How Fashionable Scholarship and Serendipity Brought Us Our Western Musical Canon

As Classical educators, we know that history cannot be understood or mastered in isolation. Within the skein of history, every human endeavor is interwoven. One of the great supports for proclaiming this fact lies in the ancient paradigm of upper-level education known as the Quadrivium. There we find music named alongside of arithmetic, geometry, and astronomy—attesting to both the scientific aspects of music and the artistic aspects of the sciences.

How then do we approach the term “history” when applied to music? Is there a separation between the way music (or any art form) develops and the manner in which historians describe its development? To what degree does an historian’s narrative about music respond to prevailing cultural, social, philosophical, or technological trends? What role have publications and scholarship played in defining the narrative? And how has that activity influenced our understanding of music today?

Enter, if you will, the term “historiography,” or the history of writing about history. There is a rich field called music historiography wherein we analyze the way the history of music has been promulgated, organized, and presented. We moderns did not acquire our perceptions of our Western musical heritage by accident. Those perceptions have been formed gradually, at specific times, by specific factors, the most important of which are the development of musical notation and an ongoing flow of publications that elevated the music by specific composers to superior status. So let us look at this heritage, and consider how it all came about.

* * *

Our Heritage of Western Music

When we speak of Western music, we are talking about repertoire stemming largely from the European continent whose influence spilled over to places as far away as tsarist Russia and the New World. Most of us grew up perceiving the symphony orchestra to be the primary icon of this heritage, which in truth it is. But students may presume that, somehow, this orchestra dropped fully formed from the heavens, or that its development was inevitable, without drama or objection.

In addition, few people stop to wonder how the hierarchies within our Western legacy came to be established. For example, when did violins ascend as the most exalted members of the symphony orchestra, with percussion instruments sinking to the least respected? Why did names like J. S. Bach, Haydn, Mozart, Beethoven, and Brahms—fabulous composers to be sure—rise to prominence above all others? For that matter, think of the fact that these composers were all German speakers, even as the bulk of our musical forms, instruments, and musical terminology are Italian (e.g., concerto, opera, sinfonia, flauto, pianoforte, crescendo, pianissimo).

The process of giving full answers to such questions would require several substantial monographs, although the process would be straightforward.[1] For our purposes, let us explore three formative stages in the development of our musical legacy and examine the specific aspects of, and influences on, each stage. By doing so, we can construct a mini-history of Western music as well as a sampler of developments and trends in music historiography.

*  *  *

Stage 1: Medieval through the Baroque

Artists throughout history have worked for those who paid for their hire. As far back as the written record goes, artists have responded to the tastes of their patrons, be they masters or lords, princes or bishops, institutes or foundations. From ancient times until the period we call the Medieval, composers’ names did not survive for two reasons. First, secular music developed in a largely impromptu manner and was not preserved in written form; secondly, Christian repertoire, for which notation was eventually developed and codified, budded when anonymity would have been the norm for artists in ecclesiastical realms (icons, stained glass, and even the body of Gregorian chants attributed in legend to Pope Gregory the Great).

Then, in the 12th century, a good mark for many historical changes, actual names of individual composers began to be preserved. A style of music we call “early polyphony” arose around the new Cathedral of Notre Dame in Paris and two names responsible for this style—the earliest composers identifiable—emerged from the shadows: Léonin and Pérotin.[2]

A flood of known composers and performers filled the next centuries, but the overall assumption was that their successes would be local and temporary. In the same way that hits of the Roaring Twenties or rock tunes of the 1960s climbed the charts and disappeared, consumers of music, be it sacred or secular, demanded freshly composed repertoire throughout most of our history.[3] Consequently, works by successful Renaissance masters like Guillaume Dufay, Johannes Ockeghem, Jacob Obrecht, and Philippe Verdelot were regarded as fine compositions of the past, but their outdated style could not steal the spotlight from the newer styles rolling in. Works by select figures (e.g. Josquin des Prez, Giovanni Palestrina) did keep a certain currency, but music per se remained a consumable good. Its development and production did not stand still.

Our modern idea of “writing for posterity” would not arise until the 19th century. Its first manifestation dates to the late Renaissance when a perceptible call began for composers to step away from a role as guildsmen and build what we would call a “career profile” in order to secure the best professional post. The supreme example of this trend may be the career of Johann Sebastian Bach (1685-1750). Stemming from a long line of musicians, Bach spent his life in pursuit of ever-more amenable civic, court, or church positions, all of which frustrated him. But each of his positions led him to write contrasting types of compositions. For this we are grateful as we cherish specific bodies of his music such as organ works, choral masterpieces, and instrumental gems like the Brandenburg Concertos.

But still, Bach’s fame remained regional and time-limited. While admired in the next generation for his contrapuntal genius, he was viewed as old fashioned and, therefore, not relevant to the innovative wave of new composers. Among those rising to prominence were several of Bach’s talented sons, one of whom is called the “London Bach” for landing a position of influence in London,[4] and another of whom wrote copiously for the 18th-century’s greatest music aficionado, Prussian King Frederick the Great.[5]

Far greater in stature during J. S. Bach’s era was his German contemporary George Friedrich Handel (1685-1759). Handel was the recipient of the first commemorative monograph (biography) devoted to an individual composer: Memoirs of the Life of the Late George Friedrich Handel to which is added A Catalogue of His Works, and Observations upon Them by John Mainwaring.[6]

This highly laudatory paean to Handel appeared in 1760, one year after the composer’s death, and reminds us that Handel was the first international superstar in Western music. After establishing a reputation in Hamburg as a composer of trendy Italian operas, Handel moved to Italy for more success until he was wooed to London. There he switched from composing operas to putting his trademark on the flourishing genre of the oratorio. He became widely celebrated for oratorios like Messiah and Saul as well as cutting-edge instrumental pieces such as Music for the Royal Fireworks.

Accordingly, Mainwaring (1724-1807), an Englishman, penned a landmark biography of Handel, filling more than 200 pages with the kind of prose ordinarily reserved for Greek gods or feared monarchs. Inevitably containing inaccuracies unremarkable for the period, Mainwaring’s text nonetheless took a forward-looking scholarly approach, including adding an extensive listing of Handel’s known works.

Significantly, biographical attention had been accorded more than two hundred years earlier to the visual arts in a lengthy publication undertaken by artist and architect Giorgio Vasari called Lives of the Most Excellent Painters, Sculptors, & Architects (1551).[7] Vasari provided biographical sketches for hundreds of artists, including towering names like Raphael, da Vinci, Giotto, as well as some barely known today. Vasari’s sketches ranged between accurate and fanciful, but the totality of his scope laid a foundation for what would become the discipline of art history.

What accounts for the two-hundred-year gap between Vasari’s extensive accomplishment and Mainwaring’s first-ever biographical monograph of a composer? After all, music proliferated so intensely during these two centuries. Yet, biographies of individual composers did not appear.

One answer lies in the fact that visual art (paintings, sculpture, decorative art) either has immediate monetary value or can be deemed valuable as time passes  Also art, with or without financial value, is tangible and often functional (e.g., tapestries that insulated stone-cold chambers in medieval castles or public statuary that defines and decorates a square). Art also portrays and preserves historical events (scenes of battles, coronations), geographical spaces (landscapes), and personal legacies (portraits). Art transfers well to each subsequent generation and, for that matter, has potential worth as booty in war.

Music, on the other hand, is ephemeral. It cannot be held in the hand or tucked into a frame. It is difficult to monetize. Physical manifestation of historic music in written form, whether a composer’s manuscript or a printed edition, did not acquire monetary value until the late 19th century when a revival of historical repertoire began to capture the broader imagination.

Certain sacred compositions across centuries had retained currency within ecclesiastical life: mass settings by the Renaissance master Palestrina, for example, as well as the utilitarian repertoire of Gregorian chants. Still, only with the dawn of the Romantic vision did music of the past merit scholarly and popular attention.

Stage 2: The Enlightenment, Romanticism, and the “Great Man Theory”

By the end of the 18th century, the social position of the artist had changed. The time-period of Revolutionary France was not kind to the arts. Patronage dried up; indeed, many an aristocrat was dead, impoverished, or displaced. Cathedrals, palaces, and performing venues across Europe would be destroyed by Napoleon’s armies. When the Napoleonic Wars were over, a new era had dawned and a different economic force was shaping the way music developed: namely, the paying public.

Once destined to live off an archduke’s purse, composers suddenly had to promote themselves, to organize concerts and hire musicians, to print posters and programs, and to suffer the uncertainty as to what would trigger the next paycheck.[8] The artist’s public image began to matter more too. What accounted for such outstanding talent? Whence came the excess of virtuosity required by many new compositions of the 19th century?

Tantalizing new lore about “the creative genius” gained credence. For most historical eras, an artist’s talent had been viewed as a gift from the Divine; but that explanation paled in light of more exciting explanations once psychology emerged as a discipline in the 19th century. A Romantic view of talent even credited the virtuosity of performers like Paganini and Liszt to il diavolo! In that same century, once the winds of Neoclassicism began to blow, some artists also were cast in partnership with the Greek Muses.

Now fully in the public eye, conscious of the need to cultivate their public images, composers faced another beast: the music critic whose role strengthened exponentially with the proliferation of journals and newspapers. Today we see music criticism as a minor, specialized element within the “arts” section of a newspaper. But music critics by the 19th century held enormous sway. Their articles in the press were extensive, biased, entertaining, and persuasive. To be “up on the arts” from the mid-18th century on meant to read the words of one’s favorite critics, many of whom warred openly with each other, to the delight of the reading public.

To illustrate some of these points, let us consider the undeniable genius Ludwig van Beethoven (1770-1827) whose career was affected by all of these forces: difficulty finding patronage, the rise of Napoleon, the whims of the new listening public, and the skepticism of the music critic.

An often frustrated and disconcerted man, Beethoven struggled in addition with the crippling ailment of degenerative deafness. Yet, his “image” underwent perhaps the most radical posthumous shift in artistic history. An ordinary-looking person (based on surviving portraits), he would be transformed in less than a century by a series of visual artists into, ultimately, the god-like figure portrayed in Max Klinger’s towering “Beethoven” monument created for the Secession Exhibit in Vienna in 1902. Viewers gasped at this marble-and-gilded Beethoven astride a powerful chariot, flanked by eagles, his angry eyes piercing and unruly hair flying![9]

Klinger’s monument reflects a clear historiographical shift from the Enlightenment ideal of composer as courtly servant and admired technician to a vision of the composer as a transcendental mega-figure. In its sheer size, extravagance of design, and expensive materials, Klinger’s Beethoven set into three dimensions an indelible interpretation of the power of ephemeral sound that flows from the mind and heart of a creative human being.

The “Great Man Theory” developed as a catchall phrase for this Romanticized interpretation of how specific figures are born with superhuman ability to influence events. It changed how music history (indeed all history) was written. And, powered by new directions in music publishing, it continued to shape the historical narrative of not only music, but the arts in general well into the 20th century.[10]

Stage 3: Dawn of Our Modern Era and New Directions in Music Publishing

Looking, then, across the shifting sands of the 19th century, it is not surprising to find many new types of publications in music. A rash of individual composer-biographies poured forth, some following the panegyric tone of Mainwaring’s biography of Handel, but others assuming a more objective, scientific tone. In fact, several landmark 19th-century music biographies are still viewed with respect, including the first biography of J. S. Bach completed in 1802 by Johann Forkel entitled Über Johann Sebastian Bach’s Leben, Kunst, und Kunstwerke (About Johann Sebastian Bach, Life, Art, and Artistic Works). Forkel’s biography in fact served as a key resource in the Romantic revival of interest in Bach’s music.

Another similarly respected (and still consulted) biography came from the pen of an American-born librarian named Alexander Wheelock Thayer. Thayer undertook to correct and expand a problematic biography of Beethoven published in 1840 by Moravian violinist Anton Schindler who not only had served as a secretary to Beethoven but ended up buying a chunk of Beethoven’s disorderly estate. Thayer’s extremely detailed biography countered serious misstatements by Schindler and contained enormous amounts of accurate detail about Beethoven’s life and music. Thayer’s Life of Beethoven appeared in three volumes between 1866 and 1879 and, with revisions by modern editors, is still in print and consulted today.

By the 19th-century’s end, music biography was an established art within music historiography. But much remained to be published. Perhaps the most radical of the new publishing ventures involved the idea of producing extensive, multi-volume editions of music that would not have been available previously to the public. These divided into two types. The first type bore the title “Complete Works” or “Collected Editions” and immediately served to enshrine a composer’s reputation, sending him as it were into the rank of the “Great Men.”[11] The second involved collecting, editing, and publishing bodies of compositions united by a common theme, genre, or national origin.

Casting our eye over the first of these undertakings—the complete or collected editions (Gesamtausgaben)—the first series of merit was issued in 1851 by the Leipzig firm of Breitkopf und Härtel and devoted to the music of that city’s favorite son: Johann Sebastian Bach. This publication took fifty years to complete and, despite being superseded by more accurate editions, stands as a wonder in publishing history.

Similar collected editions followed quickly. Most took decades to complete and some were never finished. The majority of composers chosen for these early compilations were German-speakers whose careers flourished within Western Europe, including Handel, Beethoven, Mendelssohn, Mozart, Schumann, and Schubert.[12] Even today, most of these composers continue to be placed in the category of “Great Men.”

Who then bought these editions? Published music to this point had been printed as a consumable item, purchased with gusto at reasonable prices by those eager to take it home and sing or play it, much as we do with recordings and downloads today.

But these large-scale collected editions were expensive, targeted at a different audience. They were sold by subscription to princely and aristocratic families, wealthy merchants, university and museum libraries, rival publishing houses, and the burgeoning “Friends of Music” Societies (Gesellschaften der Musikfreunden) that were emerging in cities across Europe and the United States. The names of such organizations appear in the subscription list of the aforementioned 1851 edition of Bach’s music, along with individuals living as far away as New York and Baltimore.

The second type of new publication, unquestionably more esoteric, arose in the last part of the 19th-century, initially with the German title Denkmäler (denken, to think; mal, time) or Monuments. These editions sought to recover from the cobwebs of history an impressive sweep and array of compositions of many types (genres) that had enjoyed popularity in their day but, in most cases, had been forgotten.

Initial sets of such monuments focused on repertoire that had sounded within the Austro-Hungarian Empire or the newly constituted (1871) nation of Germany. The earliest monument series began in the late 1860s and 1870s, but the first series actually to be completed was one published between 1892 and 1911 with the title Denkmäler der deutscher Tonkunst (Monuments of German Music), employing the high-brow word Tonkunst for music and known affectionately as the DDT. The DDT was answered two years later by the launching of the DTÖ—Denkmäler der Tonkunst in Österreich, or Monuments of Austrian Music. When stretched out on a library shelf, these impressive volumes served as a concrete testament to those nations’ musical achievements.

A host of similar monuments arose in various cultural centers across Europe and Great Britain. English scholars, for example, assembled a series presenting their extraordinary repertoire of Renaissance vocal music in The English Madrigal School (1913-24). Germans sent an important reply with Das Chorwerk (The Choral Work) beginning in 1929. Both of these monument series were printed less expensively, rendering them ideal for ordinary choirs to use in performance.[13]

Another fascinating, and highly useful, research tool came into print: the thematic catalogue wherein compositions would be compiled, “scientifically” described, and given a numbering system. As an idea, thematic catalogues were not new. Composers (or their publishers) had always made inventories of their own works, utilizing unique numbering systems or employing the general term opus number (work number) to designate their order of composition or publication. But think how significant it was for second parties, decades or centuries later, to begin to catalogue an historical composer’s works using the best known practices: finding and eliminating spurious or dubious works, identifying inconsistencies, and filling in, as accurately as possible, missing data such as date and place of composition!

Indeed, the first such scholarly thematic catalogue appeared in 1862 from the pen of a German aristocrat Ludwig Ritter von Köchel who adored the music of Mozart. Despite the fact that subsequent researchers would discover much new information about Mozart’s works, Köchel’s numbering system continues to be used for Mozart’s music. For example, Mozart’s Symphony No. 41 known as the Jupiter Symphony, is still identified as K. 551 (KV 551).[14]

Now nearly the full complement of innovative, groundbreaking, and consequential tools for studying music history was in place. With the proliferation of collected editions (Gesamtausgaben) and highly detailed thematic catalogues of composers’ works, a presumptive canon of “great” composers had been established. Most of these names still stand today as icons of our Western classical heritage.

The multi-volume monument series played a more limited role in affecting public understanding of music. But their very publication provided immediate access to a nation’s musical legacy and a sophisticated documentation of music of the past. On the other hand, an ongoing stream of new composer biographies was embraced by music professionals and, in some cases, the reading public. In a surprisingly short amount of time, music had attained the status of a scientific discipline: a modern field of research with extensive scholarly tools and expanding bibliographic support.[15]

Not surprisingly the term Musikwissenschaft (Science of Music) began to be applied to this burgeoning scholarly study of music history. Documented as early as 1827, the use of this term (best rendered “musicology”) by the 1860s parallels directly the 19th-century Germanic trend to treat the study of disciplines within the humanities as a science. Once treated as scientific, the path of music history invited not just ongoing research but scholarly retrospectives on how music had been perceived and presented across time, which brings us back to the idea of music historiography as the “history” of music’s history.

* * *

This narrative from the 12th century to the middle of the 20th century has been selective. Yet it does highlight the major stages of thought, tools, and actions that gave us our Western musical legacy. The publications of actual music and the variety of bibliographic tools employed by music researchers in the 19th century continue to inform modern scholarship. The sheer breadth of these tools is impressive and deserves to be better known among Classical educators.

Nor is the work of music historians done. Early complete editions need revamping in light of newly discovered sources and better editorial practices. The task of recovering more obscure historical repertoire— started with the 19th-century monuments series—continues at an accelerated pace.[16] Microfilm, one of the Second World War’s greatest technological gifts, thankfully ensured the preservation of many important resources through that (and subsequent) disasters, and has allowed musicological research to go from local to national to global in scope. Digitization in our own era has enabled even more effortless access to such materials.

But then the critical question arises: what do we do with all of these volumes of notes and information? By the 1980s, music libraries were already overflowing with materials in excess of what any student or consumer could absorb. The language of music scholarship after World War II moved far away from the language of the average music lover and established itself fully in the Ivory Tower of academe. So, despite the marvels of what has been discovered and documented, musicological publications and the fascinating insights gleaned by music historiography has had limited effect on the audiences who attend and support classical music.

Meanwhile, “the Great Man” theory does continue to exist, although it has waned in influence. A remnant of its influence can be seen in the form of miniature plaster composer busts—often the trio known as “the Three B’s” or Bach, Beethoven, and Brahms. These artifacts remain a concrete testament to a personality-driven interpretation of music’s history, but they seem quaint when compared to today’s global view of music. If set against the tone of current academic writings on music which, alas, blares our societal obsession with identity politics, they become fully archaic.

There is another remnant of “the Great Man Theory” that Classical educators might wish to reconsider, for it is alive and well. We see it in the way music frequently is taught to children: namely the pedagogy of using composers’ biographies (composer studies) to introduce children to music. The biographies designed these days for children are usually accurate, if simplistic, filled with pictures, and sometimes accompanied by recorded music in different formats. On the surface, they are attractive resources.

My cautions about relying primarily on such composer biographies goes beyond the scope of this article. Suffice it to say that they rarely accomplish the purpose of generating enthusiasm for the actual music or teach the skills necessary to comprehend music. If and when they are implemented, composer biographies are most effective when subordinated to actual repertoire, interlaced with cultural and historical factors, and enhanced by knowledgeable instruction from enthusiastic tutors, parents, or curriculum providers.

The preferred, and more effective, approach to teaching children about music history involves setting forth and pursuing an integrated study of the arts wherein every possible discipline is interwoven.[17] Such an integrated method of study knows no limits in terms of topics and content. That fact, in and of itself, can frustrate students (and adults) who instinctively want “learning” to fall into predictable and easily manageable categories. But is not real learning often messy? Can not learning be described as a flowing river into which countless tributaries unceasingly pour?

It is our job as Classical educators to help students navigate this breathtakingly beautiful, if tumultuous, river. To the degree we do this, and help students interpret historical development as an ever-shifting product of each given era, our Western musical legacy shines as a glittering tapestry of divinely inspired human achievement.

SELECTED BIBLIOGRAPHY

 

Bergeron, Katherine and Philip V. Bohlman, eds. Disciplining Music: Musicology and Its Canons. Chicago: University of Chicago Press, 1992.

Comini, Alessandra. The Changing Image of Beethoven: A Study in Myth-Making New York: Rizzoli, 1987; 2nd ed. Santa Fe: Sunstone Press, 2016.

Crocker, Richard L. A History of Musical Style. Toronto: Dover Publications, 1986.

Dahlhaus, Carl. Foundations of Music History. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 1983.

Denkmäler der deutscher Tonkunst (Monuments of German Music), Series 1,65 vols. Breitkopf und Härtel, 1892-1931; Series 2, 38 vols. Leipzig: Breitkopf und Härtel, 1957-1961. Online: https://bit.ly/36TuHzA

Duckles, Vincent. “Patterns in the Historiography of 19th-Century Music,” Acta Musicologica 42 (1970): 75-82.

Köchel, Ludwig Ritter von. Chronologisch-Thematisches Verzeichniss sämmtlicher Tonwerke Wolfgang Amade [sic] Mozarts. Leipzig: Breitkopf und Härtel, 1862.

Online https://bit.ly/3kGpf7J

 

Mathew, Benjamin and Benjamin Walter, eds. The Invention of Beethoven and Rossini: Historiography, Analysis, Criticism. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 2013.

Raynor, Henry. A Social History of Music From the Middle Ages to Beethoven and Music and Society Since 1815. New York: Taplinger Publishing Co., 1978.

Répertoire International des Sources Musicales (RISM) (International Inventory of Musical Sources), 1952. Online: http://www.rism.info/publications.html

[1] A good point of departure in terms of a single volume might be Richard L. Crocker’s A History of Musical Style (New York: McGraw-Hill Books, 1966, revised 1986), covering the development of musical styles and ideas from 700 to modern times.

[2] Léonin (c. 1150-1201?); Pérotin, c. 1155/60-1200/1205).

[3] After the Second World War, this paradigm changed for the first time. Music of the most prominent Romantic composers (like Beethoven. Brahms, Mendelssohn, Mozart, Rossini, and Verdi, kept their currency and their box-office appeal, overriding the demand for new compositions which, by the 1920s and 30s had become so avant-garde as to alienate audiences. A different, but also unique, situation arose in the 1980s regarding pop music (rock and roll) as tunes from the 1950s, 60s, and 70s stayed popular with a new generation of young people and, even now, keep their currency with an audience three generations removed from their original fans.

[4] Johann Christoph Bach, 1735-1782.

[5] Carl Philipp Emanuel Bach, 1714-1788.

[6] London, 1760. Translated into German in 1761 by Johann Mattheson and published under the title Georg Friderich Händels Lebenbeschreibung.

[7] Le Vite de’ più eccellenti pittori, scultori, ed architettori. Florence, 1551.

[8] In some respects, the public had already gained significant access to the arts. Eighteenth-century monarchs as powerful as Catherine the Great, for example, had opened their private art collections to select elements of the public.

[9] The process of that transformation (from ordinary man to godlike figure) has been documented in a fascinating volume called The Changing Image of Beethoven: A Study in Myth-Making (New York: Rizzoli, 1987; revised edition Sunstone Press, 2016) by the most colorful scholar I have ever known, Southern Methodist University’s Distinguished Professor of Art History Emerita Dr. Alessandra Comini.

[10] The “Great Man Theory” prevailed as the primary shaper of the narrative across the arts until the disastrous simultaneity of history’s “greatest” evil trio of “great” men: Hitler. Mussolini, and Stalin. Thereafter, in post-World War II music scholarship and the humanities at large, that narrative crumbled.

[11] Other titles found included Musikalische Werke, Obras completas, Œuvres completes, Opera omnia, Tutte le opere, and Собранние сочинение (Sobrannie sochinenie).

[12] Extensive “complete” editions burst forth in the first half-century of this publishing phenomenon, as shown here by the dates of their initial volumes: Handel (1858-); Palestrina (1862-); Beethoven (1862-); Mendelssohn (1874-); Mozart (1877-); Chopin (1878-); Schumann (1880-); Grétry (1884-); Schubert (1884-); Schütz (1885); Lassus (1894); Berlioz (1899-); Schein (1901-). The few non-German composers in the list are interesting to observe, including the stellar French master of opera and ballet André Grétry (1741-1813)—a composer whose name is still enshrined in the décor of European opera houses but whose works have largely been forgotten— as well as two of the greatest masters of Renaissance polyphony: Italian Giovanni Palestrina (1525-1594) and Flemish Orlando di Lasso (c. 1532-1594). But the most fascinating name is that of Frédéric Chopin (1810-1849), a Polish pianist whose modest, problematic career in Paris seemed unlikely to catapult him to the rank of “Great Men.” His collected edition did much to ensure his ongoing reputation.

[13] These types of editions became important vehicles for projecting national sentiments and identities, particularly in the years surrounding the Second World War: for example, the Czech contribution called Musica antiqua bohemica (Music of Old Bohemia), beginning in 1943.

[14] Köchel-Verzeichnis (Köchel mark/sign).

[15] There are superstars in this publishing phenomenon, including the most highly esteemed Bohemian-Austrian scholar Guido Adler (1855-1941) whose sweeping accomplishments in music are too numerous to summarize.

[16] The most ambitious international project was founded in Paris in 1952 and entitled International Inventory of Musical Sources, or Répertoire International des Sources Musicales (RISM). Today it is, not surprisingly, an online data bank involving projects around the globe.

[17] This integrative approach shapes everything we create at Professor Carol®. Our courses are dedicated to the fact that history can be studied and analyzed through the lens of the Fine Arts. In addition to courses and a diverse offering of seminars and instructional series, we just launched a colorful new feature that integrates history with repertoire called “Composer of the Month.”

© Retained by author and Institute for Classical Education 2020 

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