"Johann Sebastian Bachs vierstimmige Choral-Gesänge gesammlet von Carl Philipp Emanuel Bach 1765." Contemporary manuscript copy of chorales by Bach and others.
Oblong folio (340 x 202 mm). 272 written pages with a total of 252 numbered chorales (and 4 pages of empty pen-staves). Contemporary half calf over mottled boards with manuscript title label to upper cover. All edges sprinkled in red.
Highly interesting collection of Bach chorales, very likely assembled from 1765 onwards at St. Thomas School, Leipzig under the direction of Johann Friedrich Doles, the student of and successor to Johann Sebastian Bach, who sought to make his master's works more widely known. According to an expert opinion included with the volume (ca. 1940), the late head of the Peters Music Library, Kurt Taut (1888-1939), had surmised that the book was "written in Doles's own hand". This assumption is sustained by the apparently autograph entry "di Doles" at the beginning of the Doles chorales which entirely resembles the writing of the remainder of the manuscript.
The volume comprises a total of 252 chorales in a clean, contemporary copy by a single hand, numbered in red ink and (by a later editor) in pencil. Numbers 1 through 200 broadly agree with the two-part printed edition of Bach's chorales issued by Carl Philipp Emanuel Bach (Berlin/Leipzig 1765 & 1769), while numbers 231-251 represent the melodies for Gellert's "Geistliche Oden und Lieder" which Doles published in 1758, but in a revised order. As far as they could be identified, the final piece as well as the thirty pieces between the (real or ascribed) Bach music and Doles's settings consist of works by various composers of the 16th through 18th centuries, including Doles.
Provenance: In 1882 the book was in the library of the Leipzig-based cultural anthropologist and Bach collector Albrecht Kurzwelly (1868-1917), as shown by his label on the pastedown and his ownership on the flyleaf. After his death, it passed into the possession of the Zwenkau music publisher and collector Walter Höckner (cf. his stamp and the end).
Extremeties slightly bumped; a few spine defects have been professionally repaired. Signed expertise (1878) by the Leipzig choirmaster and Bach scholar Wilhelm Rust (1822-92); another opinion (1918) by Rust's successor Bernhard Friedrich Richter (1850-1931) is pasted between the upper cover and the flyleaf.