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About Scholarly and Critical Editions of Music
These are the work of music scholars and comprise multi-volume monographic sets or series, often published over decades. They primarily fall into two categories:
Composer's Collected Works
Monuments of Music
Series of scores based on geography, time period, or repertory
Musica Britannica (music by British composers), Polyphonic Music of the Fourteenth-Century Most shelved in
Reference Room, M2, by title of series Some shelved in
Basement, Stacks, or at the LSF (circulating volumes) Many of the volumes are cataloged separately, so that you may search for works by specific composers
Editions based on the most important manuscript and printed sources
Each volume typically accompanied by a "critical report" (or
apparatus criticus), sometimes in a separate volume Critical report goes through the score measure-by-measure, noting variants in the sources
Locating Individual Works in Scholarly Editions
Index to Printed Music
A name and title index to music printed in scholarly editions, such as the critical editions of composers collected works (M3) and monuments (M2). Useful for short pieces of music in anthologies.
Other Resources for Identifying Scholarly Editions
These give the musical incipits of movements, but also usually list the complete works by title, volume and page number. Also list important printed and manuscript sources, and citations to books and articles about the work.
Many shelved in Reference, ML134, arranged by composer
Subject: Thematic Catalogs (click Modify search and add Subject: composer's name or browse list)
Works lists in
Grove Music Online (Oxford Music Online)
Searching for Composers Critical Editions
Searching for Monuments
1. A title search for a monument, Das Erbe deutscher Musik, brings back a very brief record. Notice that there is no subject heading.
2. The "Available from" box for Das Erbe deutscher Musik indicates it is in the Reference Room, but gives no call number. Notice the instruction: Search under individual Author/title
Searching for the monument title, using the Title begins with field, leads to the series records, but also the individual volumes with their authors and titles. Browse through the list, or use the Author and Subject limiters on the left to narrow the results.