Cover page of an 1896 edition of Jugend magazine. The magazine, founded and edited by Hirth, was important for helping popularize Art Nouveau and for lending its name to the German term for the style, Jugendstil.
Hirth was born in Tonna, present-day Thuringia in 1841, studied to be an economist in Gotha and in Leipzig, and after a career working as a journalist he founded the magazine Jugend: Münchner illustrierte Wochenschrift für Kunst und Leben (English: Youth: the illustrated weekly magazine of art and lifestyle of Munich). This publication, which reflected the modernist ideals that were circulating at the time among artists, was instrumental in promoting the style of Art Nouveau in Germany. As a result, the magazine's name was adopted as the most common German-language term for the movement: Jugendstil ("Jugend-style"). Hirth also coined the term "Secession" to represent the spirit of the various modern and reactionary movements of the era. He died in Tegernsee in 1916.
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