Born at Bourges, France. Became a pupil of Zimmermann at the Paris Conservatory. When thirteen years old he took the first piano prize and the next year made a concert tour with his sister. He then settled in Vienna, where he studied under Czerny, Sechter, Seyfried and Fischhof. In 1840 he again traveled through Germany, then went to Paris. There he studied harmony under Barbereau, devoting himself to composition and becoming very successful as a teacher. He was influenced in his compositions by Berlioz. In 1847 he produced in Paris his dramatic choral symphony, Manfred; three years later appeared Arva, ou les Hongrois, a similar work. His cantata, Sappho, won a prize at the exhibition of 1878. Among his compositions are operas, dramatic symphonies, music for strings, sonatas for piano and many songs. Only one of his operas was performed during his lifetime. His four-act opera, Winkelried, was given at Geneva in 1892.