Frederick the Great
(1712—1786) king of Prussia 1740–86
(b Berlin, 1712; d Potsdam, 1786).
Ger. sovereign (reigned 1740–86) who was also composer, flautist, and patron of music. Pupil of Hayne and Quantz. Est. court orch. Berlin 1740, and opera house 1742. Employed C. P. E. Bach as harpsichordist from 1740, and J. S. Bach visited the court at Potsdam, 1747, the Musical Offering being the result (based on theme supplied by Frederick). Other notable musicians in Frederick's service incl. the Graun brothers and Quantz. Comp. syms., opera, marches, arias, etc. Wrote libs. for K. H. Graun.