Use RISM to identify and locate music primary sources, including manuscripts or printed music, works on music theory, and libretti stored in libraries, archives, monasteries, schools and private collections. These institutions can often be approached for reproductions.
Each RISM source description contains :
The 3 RISM print series are at: UniM Southbank REF 016.78 RISM
Series A: prints and manuscripts containing works by one composer only
Series B: prints and manuscripts containing works by more than one author, and theoretical treatises
Series C: brief descriptions of all libraries throughout the world which contain music.
Manuscripts and early printed editions (published before 1801) are primary sources invaluable to the music scholar and student. Identifying and locating these materials can be a complex process. For an overview of the richness of these materials, consult the following introductory articles:
A review of the character and repertory of the main classes of manuscript in use before 1600, arranged by subject matter and also chronologically. The text is interspersed with descriptions of the major individual sources.The text is divided into the following sections (each contains a bibliography):
A review of the principal sources up to 1630 of music for two or more instruments (excluding two or more keyboards, lutes and other chordal instruments) to play together without the voice. The text is interspersed with descriptions of the major individual sources. After a general introduction, the list is organised geographically in six parts: Italy, France, Germany, Netherlands, Spain and Portugal, British Isles.
A review of sources of keyboard music up to about 1660. The text is interspersed with descriptions of the major individual sources. After a general introduction, the article is organised geographically into five parts: Italy, France, Germany, Eastern Europe and Scandinavia, The Netherlands, Spain and Portugal.
A review of the manuscript and printed sources of music for the lute. The text is interspersed with descriptions of the major individual sources. After a general introduction, the article is organised geographically in eight parts: Italian sources to c1680, Central European sources to c1650, French sources, 1529-99, Vihuela sources, 1536-76, The Low Countries, c1545-1626, English lute music, French sources, 1600-99, Central European sources after c1650.
The item-level index to the music manuscript collections of primary source microfilm held at the Louise Hanson-Dyer Music Collection.