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A Guide to Library Resources for Music

Dictionaries and Encyclopedias

  • A Dictionary of Music Titles: The Origins of the Names and Titles of 3,500 Musical Compositions
  • New Grove Dictionary of Music & Musicians (also available as part of Oxford Music Online - see below)
  • The Garland Encyclopedia of World Music

Thematic Catalogs

Thematic Catalogs provide an organized lists of composer's works.

A thematic catalogue is an index to a group of musical compositions that incorporates citations of their opening notes (incipits), or principal melodic features (themes), or both. These citations may be given in various forms, such as conventional notes, neumes, tablatures, syllables, numbers, letters or computer codes. Brook, Barry S. 2001. "Thematic catalogue" Grove Music Online. 23 Aug. 2018.

Why use a thematic catalog? Thematic catalogs can help you locate individual works in a composer's collected edition. They also contain a lot of useful information on the primary sources (manuscripts, early editions) of a composer's works.