Manfred Bukofzer

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Manfred Bukofzer
Born(1910-03-27)March 27, 1910
DiedDecember 17, 1955(1955-12-17) (aged 45)
NationalityGermany, United States
CitizenshipUnited States
Alma materHeidelberg University
EmployerUniversity of California, Berkeley
Spouse(s)Ilse Kämmerer[1]

Manfred Fritz Bukofzer (March 27, 1910 – December 7, 1955) was a German-American musicologist and humanist. He studied at Heidelberg University and the Stern conservatory in Berlin, but left Germany in 1933, going to Basle, where he received his doctorate. In 1939 he moved to the United States where he remained, becoming a U.S. citizen. He taught at the University of California, Berkeley from 1941 until his premature death from multiple myeloma.

Bukofzer is best known as a historian of early music, particularly of the Baroque era. His book Music in the Baroque Era is still one of the standard reference works on the topic, though some modern historians assert that it has a Germanic bias, for instance in minimizing the importance of opera (Italian by origin) during the development of musical style in the 17th century.

In addition to Baroque music, he was a specialist in English music and music theory of the 14th through 16th centuries. His other scholarly interests included jazz and ethnomusicology. Furthermore, during his time at Berkeley, Bukofzer conducted several successful operas, including The Beggar's Opera, Dido and Aeneas, and Village Barber.[2]

Among his influential students were Leonard Ratner.[3]


  • Manfred Bukofzer, Music in the Baroque Era. New York, W.W. Norton & Co., 1947. ISBN 0-393-09745-5


  1. ^
  2. ^ Boyden, David D. (1956). "In Memoriam: Manfred F. Bukofzer (1910-1955)". The Musical Quarterly. 42 (3): 291–301. doi:10.1093/mq/XLII.3.291. JSTOR 740426.
  3. ^ Kofi Agawu, "Leonard G. Ratner, 1916–2012" Ad Parnassum: A Journal of Eighteenth- and Nineteenth-Century Instrumental Music 10 (19), April 2012, 190–194