Der Fliegende Hollander (The Flying Dutchman) is universally acknowledged as Richard Wagner's first truly significant, original work. It is the earliest of Wagner's operatic masterpieces to have secured a permanent place in the international repertoire and the composer himself regarded it as a major turning point in his artistic career. This handbook brings together five leading specialists to provide an in-depth account of the origins, style, and performance history of Der Fliegende Hollander. Designed for scholars, performers and the opera-going public alike, the book reflects on the biographical impulses behind the opera's conception and considers how Wagner drew on German Romantic tradition whilst also anticipating the revolutionary aims of 'music drama'. The opera's literary sources and production history are examined and there is a detailed survey of how generations of performers have interpreted the musical score. Rare pictures from important and influential productions complete this invaluable guide.