J.S. Bach Manuscript BWV 747 – Gaylord Music Library Special Collections

Among the many items this library acquired in the purchase of the Ernst C. Krohn Musicological Library is what appears to be a manuscript by a copyist contemporary with Johann Sebastian Bach of his chorale prelude “Christus der uns selig macht”, BWV 747. It is written in black ink on a single folded sheet 35cm high by 40cm wide. The front has pencilled notations: Schmieder 747 [,] Choralvorspiel von J. S. B. [and] (something illegible). There are two hands represented here. The one giving the title is more nearly contemporary with that of the score. The composition occupies the other three leaves. Above the first system is written “Christus der uns selig macht.” and “di J. S. B.” It is written on three staves. Following the final measure is an ornamental double bar of progressively shorter lines working down to a single dot on the middle line of the middle staff. This is then followed by the word “Finis.” with the “F” written with a large flourish. The ink fades near the fold and the outer edges. Also, it tends to bleed through from one side of the paper to the other. The paper is worn through along the fold at the position of the bass staff of the first system. The edges of the paper are both deckled as well as slightly folded over in places.

High resolution black and white scans (400 dpi) of the manuscript is also available as a series of .PDF files. Even higher resolution files (600 dpi) are available upon request.