Books & Music

   Our Bach Bookshelf  updated 17 June 2019


During his lifetime Bach assembled a large library of books. Writings on Lutheran theology and the literary work of the day provided a rich source of reference material and thought for the composer. Some volumes in his Library are well annotated by him and, in the absence of a substantial number of personal letters and papers having survived, they provide us with some precious insight into the composer’s life and character.

Our own Bach bookshelf reflects the work of contemporary scholars. The differing approaches provide  fascinating reading material, carefully researched and written by leading Bach scholars and authors today.  Our selection also includes volumes that will enlighten the reader about the composer’s life, the fashion and taste of the age too, with one that is an absorbing series of chapters on the dissemination of Bach’s music in 19th century England, complete with detailed footnotes and references.

Note: The Prices quoted are as given at the time of publication. Please check at the time of enquiry or purchase.

Sir Henry Wood: Champion of J S Bach by Hannah French. Published by Boydell & Brewer (21 June 2019). ISBN 978 178327 385 0 Hardback price£55A review of this book is planned for publication in Bach Notes (Sept 2019).

Bach’s Famous Choir. Saint Thomas School in Leipzig (1212-1804) by Michael Maul, translated by Richard Howe. Published by Boydell & Brewer Ltd (Nov 2018) ISBN 978 1 78327 169 6. Price £55.

2019 MAUL REVIEW Bach’s Famous Choir

BACH – A Life in Pictures, Bach Documents Volume 9 Edited by Christoph Wolff, published by Barenreiter (2017). Edition no. BVK 2280.ISBN 978376182287. Price £248.50 from

The Sons of Bach edited by Peter Wollny & Stephen Roe. Published by Steglein, Ann Arbor, Michigan. (2016) ISBN: 978-0-819850-9-1. Price US  $65 (£52.56, c.61.39 Euros)

Bach: A Musical Biography by Peter Williams. Published by Cambridge University Press (2016), Hardback ISBN: 9781107139251 Price £29.99

Hearing Bach’s Passions - Updated Edition by Daniel R. Melamed. Published by Oxford University Press  (2016), Paperback ISBN 978-0-19-049012-6, 171 pages

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