He was 11 years old at the time. The three act performance is based upon Greek mythology as told by Roman poet Ovid in his masterwork Metamorphoses. Interpreting this work, Rufinus Widl wrote the libretto in Latin. The story follows that Hyacinth died accidentally from being struck on the head by a discus thrown by Apollo.
However, another myth tells that it was the wind god Zephyrus who was actually responsible for Hyacinth’s death because Zephyrus, out of jealousy, blew the discus off course in order to injure and kill Hyacinth. When he died, Apollo made the hyacinth flower spring out from his spilled blood.
The librettist and priest, Rufinus Widl, modified Ovid’s story (in which Apollo, Zephyrus, and Hyacinthus clearly constituted a homosexual love triangle) to make it conform to the ethic, by changing the sexually desired character from Ovid’s Hyacinth to Melia, his sister.
Words of Wisdom
Neither a lofty degree of intelligence nor imagination nor both together go to the making of genius. Love, love, love, that is the soul of genius.