Peter Cornelius was a German composer, writer about music, poet and translator. He was born and died in Mainz where his grave in the Hauptfriedhof survives. Cornelius played violin and composed lieder from an early age, studying with Tekla Griebel-Wandall and composition with Heinrich Esser in 1841. Cornelius lived with his painter uncle Peter von Cornelius in Berlin from 1844 to 1852, during which time he met prominent figures such as Alexander von Humboldt, the Brothers Grimm, Friedrich Rückert and Felix Mendelssohn. During his last few years in Berlin, Cornelius wrote music criticism for several major Berlin journals and entered into friendships with Joseph von Eichendorff, Paul Heyse and Hans von Bülow.