FIRST OFF . . .
Nearly 200 years after Wolfgang Mozart’s body was thrown into a common grave in Vienna’s Saint Marx cemetery in 1791, French forensic scientist Pierre-Francois Puech has positively identified Mozart’s skull because of a rare deformity that gave the composer a bulging forehead. The skull was dug up by Jacob Hirtl, an Austrian doctor, about 150 years ago and donated to the Mozarteum in Salzburg, which locked it away in a cupboard because its authenticity was in question. The recent investigation was prompted by Peter Shaffer’s play and film, “Amadeus,” which recalled Mozart’s hurried pauper’s burial when the composer was 36. Puech’s examination revealed that Mozart had a slightly larger brain than most people.