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Table of Contents

Introduction; 1. Background and genesis; 2. Overall shape; 3. The movements; 4. Questions of reception; Appendix: the intended harpsichord.

Promotional Information

A detailed guide to one of Bach's most popular keyboard works.

About the Author

Peter Williams is John Bird Professor at Cardiff University and Arts and Sciences Distinguished Chair Emeritus at Duke University. His publications include The Organ Music of J S Bach Volumes 1, 2 and 3 (Cambridge, 1980, 1984), Bach, Handel, Scarlatti 1685-1985 (Cambridge, 1985), Perspectives on Mozart Performance with R. Larry Todd (Cambridge, 1991) and The Organ in Western Culture 750-1250 (Cambridge, 1993).


Peter Williams manages to pack in an extraordinary amount of information about the work's background, compositional techniques and structures, and reception history. His consideration of the work's relationships to a large amount of other music is particularly remarkable. The writing style is fresh and engaging and the material presented clearly and concisely. We can safely say that Williams's book will be the fundamental work on its subject for years to come.' Eighteenth-Century Music
"...this study explores not only music but its historical significance and reception, in prose that is clear, pithy, and to the point...Williams's latest book is a worthy addition to the Cambridge series." Notes

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