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MUHL 3772 - Music History & Literature 2: How to locate scores & recordings

Resources and Information for Researching Baroque Music History

LC Classification for Music

Library of Congress - MUSIC

This is the breakdown of how the Library of Congress classifies all its music materials.

Helpful Hints

Don't Forget --

Use KEYWORD searching initially to ID relevant records.

Use SUBJECT/DESCRIPTOR searching using terms you find on relevant records.

Use TRUNCATION (i.e., shortening a word to its root or base form using a designated symbol, such as ?, * !, $) for words that might:

  • Have more than one significant form.
  • Have alternative spellings (type as much as you KNOW is correct!).

Search Tip

When searching for a piece in MaagNET, do an AUTHOR search for the composer (lastname, firstname) and you will get a list of all the compositions (including those within a CD or score) in alphabetical order.

If the piece is contained in a larger work, there will be a link to that larger work.

More About Recordings


When you are seeking musical recordings, don't forget to check NAXOS MUSIC ONLINE as well as MaagNET. Naxos offers streaming audio of thousands of classical, jazz, folk, and world music recordings. It also provides access to the full text of most accompanying materials and even includes a pronouncing dictionary of composers' names.

Where Can I Find This Info?

You can find these pieces of information using various resources in the Library or on the Library's Website.  Some of the most useful are:

MaagNET - just doing a simple keyword search using information you already know can yield helpful information.

The New Grove Dictionary of Music and Musicians, print version: REF ML100 .N48 (volumes 1-20) - Findu the full names of composers, their country of origin, and, in some cases, complete information about various compositions, including when the piece was written, its nickname (if any), its opus number or thematic catalog number (if applicable), and its original title, key, and instrumentation. Be sure to look for the list of a composer's works following the biographical information in the Grove main entry for that composer.

WorldCat - you also can find much of this information in the various bibliographic records for the musical work in WorldCat. The author field of the records will include the full name and dates of the composer and the uniform title will provide the original title, language, and any relevant sequence, opus, or thematic catalog numbers associated with the piece. Instrumentation is often provided as well. Nicknames may be in the title, notes, or alternative title fields.

Search Everything

Search Everything is Maag Library's discovery layer.

Use it to search MaagNET, OhioLINK, and most databases, ALL AT THE SAME TIME! Be sure to use the "limiters" in the left sidebar to narrow down your results.

Finding a Score or Recording

To find a score or recording of a particular musical work in MaagNET, the OhioLINK Catalog, WorldCat, or Naxos Music Library, you will need information about the following:

  1. Composer’s name -
    1. Last, first, and middle (or middle initial) if at all possible.
    2. Think about alternative transliterations if the name comes from a language that uses an alphabet other than the Roman alphabet, e.g., Cyrillic, Hebrew, Chinese, etc..
  2. Title of the work in its original language, e.g., The Marriage of Figaro = Le nozze di Figaro, B Minor Mass = Messe in H-Moll, Quartet for the End of Time = Quatuor pour la fin du temps.
  3. Alternative titles or nicknames, such as "Moonlight Sonata" or "Jupiter" Symphony. 
  4. Is the piece part of a larger work?  For example, an aria from a particular opera, e.g., "Quando m'en vo" = "Musetta's Waltz Song" from Puccini's La Boheme OR "No One Is Alone" from Sondheim's Into the Woods.
  5. Nationality of the composer.  This helps determine your search terms, for example:
    1. piano = Klavier (German) = clavier (French, technically, "keyboard")
    2. violin = Geige (German) = Violon (French)
    3. viola = Bratsche = alto
    4. double bass = Kontrabass (German) = Contrebasse (French)
    5. bassoon = Fagott (German) = basson (French) = fagotto (Italian)
    6. oboe = hautbois (French)
    7. percussion battery = Schlagzeug (German) = batterie (French)
    8. string quartet = Streichquartett (German) = quatuor a cordes (French)
      **For more info, consult:  International Vocabulary of Music by Stephen Dembski, et al. (ML108 .L49 1984)
  6. Numbers associated with the work, such as sequence, opus, or thematic catalog numbers.  Examples of some common thematic catalog numbers include:
    1. "BWV" = Bach Werke Verzeichnis (J.S. Bach)
    2. "D" = Deutsch (Schubert)
    3. "Hob." = Hoboken (F.J. Haydn)
    4. "K" = Kochel (Mozart)
    5. "R" = Ryom (Vivaldi)
    6. **You can often find thematic catalog numbers using the Maag Library catalog, WorldCat, or the "works" section at the end of composer entries in The New Grove Dictionary.
  7. Key signature or voice type/range.
  8. Instrumentation (or original instrumentation of work).
  9. Score format that you desire, e.g., full or conductor's score, mini-score, vocal score, piano reduction.

LC Classifications

Maag Library uses the Library of Congress Classification Scheme (LC) to determine the location of its materials.  The LC system is an alpha-numeric system.  This means that the call numbers contain letters and numbers.  The letters tell the user the general subject matter of the material; the numbers provide more specific information about the material.

M = Music or Scores

ML = Music Literature and/or Music History

MT = Music Theory and Pedagogy

Below are some important range designations for MUSIC in the LIBRARY of CONGRESS system:


M 2-2.3: Collections of Musical Sources, including Monuments

M 3-3.1: Collected works of individual composers


M 6-175: Solo instruments

M 177-990: Music for two or more solo instruments

M 180-298.5: Duets

M 300-386: Trios

M 400-486: Quartets

M 500-586: Quintets

M 600-686: Sextets

M 700-786: Septets

M 800-886: Octets

M 900-986: Nonets and larger combinations of purely chamber music

M 990: Chamber music for instruments of the 18th century and earlier

M 1000-1075: Orchestra

M 1001: Symphonies

M 1004: Overtures

M 1010-1011: Piano concertos

M 1100-1160: String orchestra

M 1200-1269: Band

M 1366: Jazz ensembles

M 1376-1420: Instrumental music for children

M 1473: Electronic music

M 1497-5000: VOCAL MUSIC

M 1497-1998: Secular vocal music

M 1500-1527.8: Dramatic music (including operas and musicals)

M 1500: Full scores

M 1503: Vocal scores with piano accompaniment

M 1611-1624.8: Songs for one (1) voice

M 1627-1853: National music

M 1990-1998: Secular music for children (useful for music education)

M 1999-2199: Sacred vocal music

M 2000-2007: Oratorios

M 2010-2017.6: Masses

M 2020-2036: Cantatas, choruses, etc.

M 2101-2114.8: Songs for one (1) voice

M 2115-2146: Hymnals


ML 48-54.8: Librettos

ML 100-109: Dictionaries & encyclopedias

ML 111-158: Bibliography

ML 113: Guides to historical sets, series, complete works, etc.

ML 134: Composers catalogs, thematic catalogs, A-Z (guides to research)

ML 159-3797: History & criticism

ML 162-197: By time period

  ML 193: General Baroque

  ML 194: 1600-1700

  ML 195: 1700-1800

  ML 196: 1800-1900

  ML 197: 1900-

ML 385-429: Biography

  ML 410: Composers, A-Z

ML 430-455: Composition

ML 460-1354: Instruments & instrumental music

ML 1100-1165: Chamber music

ML 1200-1270: Orchestral music

ML 1300-1354: Band music

ML 1400-3275: Vocal music

ML 1500-1554: Choral music

ML 1600-2881: Secular vocal music

ML 2900-3275: Sacred vocal music


MT 3: History of Music Education

MT 6-7: Music Theory

MT 40-67: Composition

MT 70-71: Orchestra & orchestration

MT 73Band & instrumentation for band

MT 90-145: Analytical guides

MT 170-810: Instrumental techniques

MT 728: Chamber music instruction & study

MT 730: Orchestral music instruction & study

MT 733-733.6: Band instruction & study

MT 740-810: Instruction & study for children

MT 820-949Singing & voice culture