Editorial Policy

Notation of Vocal Parts. Our editions are faithful to the originals but formatted in a modern music font using modern notational conventions. The most significant change is the way vocal parts are notated. In our editions, we adhere to the modern convention that sung notes of duration less than a quarter note are beamed together, even if they are assigned different syllables. Most vocal music from the public domain era would beam sung notes together only if they were all sung on the same syllable. This can best be illustrated by looking at this example:

The original beaming of notes is shown at left, while the same passage is notated in the modern convention on the right. Note that it is the slur that indicates a melisma (the technical term for a syllable sung on more than one note) in our convention.

To Number or Not to Number. Almost all of the original editions of the works in our catalog were printed without numbered measures. After considering alternatives, we decided to include measure numbering in all of our works except those in the popular song category, where we felt the presence of measure numbers was not appropriate.

Other Changes. Occasionally, we will simplify enharmonic notation or insert a key signature change to make it easier to read the music. We also make judicious correction of what we believe to be errors in the original printing. In all cases, these editorial modifications will be noted either in the score itself or in the listing in the catalog.

Punctuation in Lyrics. We will make punctuation changes to lyrics to form complete sentences and otherwise clean up poorly punctuated texts without comment, but we will not make any significant changes to the text itself without mentioning exactly what has been changed.

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