- Nussbaumer, F.A.
- A 19th-century Austrian philologist who has been credited with having been the first to render an autodescription of * synaesthesias. Nussbaumer described a systematic association between colours and musical tones (i.e. *colour hearing, or, more specifically, * coloured music) that he and his brother had experienced since childhood. As he told the Viennese Association of Physicians in 1873, the two of them used to see colours in consonance with bars of music played on the reed organ in their parental home. The brothers had a habit of commenting enthusiastically on the colours rather than the music, employing quite baroque descriptions of the various hues they perceived, due to which they were often ridiculed by the other family members. It was not until they had reached adulthood that the Nussbaumer brothers realized how unique their experience was. In his paper on the subject, F.A. Nussbaumer reports that he experienced colour hearing in his *dreams as well. Two other historical figures who claimed to be familiar with coloured music are the Russian composers Nikolai Rimsky-Korsakov (1844-1906) and Alexander Scriabin (1872-1915).ReferencesNussbaumer, F.A. (1873). Ueber subjektive Farbenempfindungen, die durch objektive Gehörempfindungen erzeugt werden. Eine Mittheilung nach Beobachtungen an sich selbst. Wiener Medizinische Wochenschrift,3, 52-54.Ziehen, Th. (1911). Psychiatrie. Für Ärzte und Studierende bearbeitet. Vierte, vollständig umgearbeitete Auflage. Leipzig: Verlag von S. Hirzel.
Dictionary of Hallucinations. J.D. Blom. 2010.