Musikverlagswiki: A Source for Dating Printed Music

Recently we told you about current bibliographic projects about Mozart and Clementi, which we learned about during this year's IAML Congress in Leipzig. Today we're sharing information about another resource we heard about in detail, from Sabine Koch (Leipzig University of Applied Sciences): the Musikverlagswiki (Music Publishers Wiki).

We all know how difficult it can be to track down publication dates for historical printed music, which has the pesky habit of sometimes being completely absent. The Musikverlagswiki was launched in 2011 to help fill the need for a resource in dating printed music.

The wiki is currently only in German. If you have the name of a publisher or printer, you can start with the pages Verleger and Drucker, respectively, to find the firm. Currently there are 110 music publishers and 16 printing houses. There is a special emphasis on Leipzig publishers, with plans to add other domestic and foreign publishers later. The entry for the great Leipzig firm Peters includes, as an example, a history, variations in the name of the firm and its owners, address, and names of other firms they acquired—all with dates. Plate numbers, with links to Hofmeister XIX, help further refine the dates. The Musikverlagwiki has been able to benefit from a close collaboration with the Sächsisches Staatsarchiv, which houses the archival holdings of Peters and other publishers. Information from the Peters Auflagebuch (catalog containing information about print runs and issues) and the Druckbuch (printing book) have been incorporated.

If you have one of those "orphan" prints that doesn't have a title page, you can go to the page Plattennummern and look at sample plate numbers for dozens of publishers, even ones without further entries in the wiki, to help identify who the publisher might be. The page Literatur lists authentic primary sources and reliable secondary sources.

Since the resource is a wiki, new information can be added, and contributions are in fact encouraged. The page Musterseiten can be used to add new pages for either publishers or printers.


Category: Electronic resources

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