Riemenschneider Bach Institute

 

Preface - Kenney Catalog

The classification and a large part of the cataloging of the Emilie and Karl Riemenschneider Memorial Bach Library were done by the late Edythe Backus. Although it has not been possible to include in the published catalog all the in­formation which Miss Backus compiled in the course of her bibliographical research on the collection, this data is record­ed in the card file at the library. Omissions are, for the most part, of material documenting the assigned dates. There are also in the library four other files which Miss Backus set up and which have been completed since her death. These are the plate-number file, the publishers' file, the chronological file, and the association file.

One other aspect of Miss Backus' work on the collection which is not reflected in this catalog is the special classification of a large number of items as "rare material." Three works published during Bach's lifetime, however, seem sufficiently important to warrant special mention here. These are the Clavierübung, Part I (Six Partitas); the variations for organ on the chorale "Vom Himmel hoch, da komm ich her"; and the Clavierübung, Part IV (Goldberg Variations) which appear here as entry nos. 2274, 1512, and 548.

The preparation of the published catalog has presented a number of problems, some of which have been solved with a view to utility at the expense of a wholly consistent system. The cantatas, for example, have been classified as full scores, vocal-piano scores, vocal scores, and excerpts. While a similar subdivision is perfectly feasible in some of the other categories, there are so few editions in some instances that it has seemed unnecessary to subdivide to the point where each item has a subheading. These editions are simply listed alphabetically by title. The composer's name has been omitted from the body of the entry except in the case of first editions or where there is an unusual form of spelling. The cantatas are arranged numerically, and the distinctive German titles are given in the first heading of each canta­ta. These titles are omitted from the entries unless the text is also published in translation. For these editions, as well as for those without the original German, the distinctive titles are given in all languages appearing in the text un­less they are not given on the title page or as a caption title.

The editions of the Well-tempered Clavier have presented the most difficult problems. A simple alphabetical listing seems to serve no useful purpose, particularly in view of the deviations of spelling even within the same language (Temperirte, Temperierte; Clavier, Clavir, Klavier, Klavir). A chronological listing was rejected partly because many of the dates are necessarily tentative and partly because ­date of issue and date of the original plates may vary widely, and in many cases the only available date is that of issue. A listing by publishers has already been published by Albert Riemen­schneider in Notes for the Music Library Association, No. 14 (August, 1942). The final decision to arrange them by editors seemed at once the most useful and the most precise. There is one obvious drawback to this arrangement, in that some editions have no editor specified. But since all con­ditions cannot be met, these editions have been placed in a second group and arranged alphabetically by publisher. In the case of the Well-tempered Clavier a further liberty has been taken with the system employed for the remainder of the catalog because the holdings of the Riemenschneider Library represent a very nearly complete collection of this work. Cross references have been used here but not for other works. In the listing of the Well-tempered Clavier, cross references are given to particular volumes in collections entered under Complete Works or Clavier Works (Collected or Selected) in order to bring together all the versions prepared by any one editor.

The preparation of this catalog has been a joint effort. Acknowledgments are due above all to two people who guided the project from the beginning through its many vicissitudes: Clyde L. Haselden, librarian of Baldwin Wallace University, and Cecil W. Munk, Director of the Baldwin Wallace Con­servatory. Jeanette Beebe, reference librarian of Baldwin­Wallace, performed the arduous task of proofreading and checking the manuscript, and Alice Hall, cataloger of the college library, was very helpful in advising on cataloging problems. Mabel Knapp, music cataloger of the Cleveland Public Library, gave generous assistance on bibliographical matters. A great deal of help was provided by Richard S. Hill, William Lichtenwanger, and Frank C. Campbell of the Library of Congress in connection with bibliographical re­search as well as on the more general problems of publishing a catalog. An indispensable part of the project was the tedious job of typing, filing, and correcting which was done by four students of Baldwin Wallace University-Barbara Snyder, Lloyd McFarland, June McCord, and Alison Elliott. Finally, thanks are due to Elizabeth Evanson, assistant editor at Columbia University Press, whose considerate and painstaking work eased the manuscript through the last stages of publication.

Bryn Mawr, Pennsylvania August, 1960

SYLVIA W. KENNEY



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