John Tyrrell's biography of the Leos Jan?cek is the culmination of a life's work in the field. It stands upon his existing documentary studies of Jan?cek's operas and translations of other key sources and his examination of thousands of still unpublished letters and other documents in the Jan?cek archive in Brno. Altogether it provides the most detailed account of Jan?cek's life in any language and offers new views of Jan?cek as composer, writer, thinker and human being. Volume 1, which goes up to the outbreak of the First World War and Jan?cek's sixtieth birthday in the summer of 1914, consists of chronological chapters providing a straightforward account of Jan?cek's life year by year and another forty contextual chapters. Topics include on-going sequences ('Music as autobiography I', etc.; 'Jan?cek's knowledge of opera I', etc.) and individual chapters on Jan?cek as a teacher, as a theorist, as an music ethnographer, on his speech-melody theory, his relationship to particularly influential operas (Tchaikovsky's Queen of Spades, Charpentier's Louise), on his mentors (such as Anton?n Dvor?k) and his b?tes noires (such as Karel Kovarovic). A particular feature are the specially commissioned chapters on Jan?cek's health by Dr Stephen Lock (one of the editors of the Oxford Illustrated Companion to Medicine, OUP 1994 and 2001, editor of the British Medical Journal, 1975-91, and a Jan?cek enthusiast since the early postwar broadasts on the Third Programme), and on Jan?cek's earnings and finances by Dr Jir? Zahr?dka (curator of the Jan?cek archive in Brno, and editor of authentic editions of S?rka and The Excursions of Mr Broucek).