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Music & Music Research

Thematic Catalogs


Bruce Gustafson, Chambonnières: A Thematic Catalogue, JSCM Instrumenta 1 (created 2007, last revised February 2017), accessed August 1, 2019.

Composers' Thematic Catalogs

A thematic catalog is a guide to a composer's works. Works can be arranged by genre, dates, or other device and information about each work can include:

  • Name of work in original language
  • Popular titles
  • Opus number, serial number, work number (e.g., K. 626, BWV 1060, D 328)
  • Type of composition
  • Key
  • Instrumentation
  • Incipits of individual movements or sections of musical works
  • Dates and places of composition, premier, revisions
  • Holding institution of holograph, working copies, first prints
  • Spurious and doubtful works
  • Bibliography of research about a work

Thematic catalogs can be found in Reference at REF ML134. They are arranged alphabetically by composer's last name.

Thematic Catalogs in the Little Fine Arts Library

Thematic catalogs can be found in Reference at REF ML134.

They are arranged alphabetically by composer's last name; for example:

REF ML134 .B09 A2 1989 = CPE Bach Thematic Catalogue of the Works of Carl Philipp Emanuel Bach

REF ML134.B155 A35 1990 = JS Bach Thematisch-systematisches Verzeichnis der musikalischen Werke von Johann sebastian Bach : Bach-Werek-Verzeichnis (BWV)

REF ML134.B175 A3 2012 = Samuel Barber Samuel Barber : A Thematic Catalogue of the Complete Works

REF ML134.B4 A18 2014 = Beethoven Ludwig van Beethoven : thematisch-bibliographisches Werkverzeichnis

and so on...

Not every composer has a thematic catalog and some have more than one! If you need help locating a thematic catalog please ask us for assistance.

Thematic Catalogs Online

Please note that some of these sites are ongoing projects and older digitized books or publisher's catalogs may not be the latest edition.

Johann Georg Albrechtsberger

Carl Philipp Emanuel Bach 

Johann Sebastian Bach

Ludwig van Beethoven 

Georges Bizet 

Johannes Brahms 

Benjamin Britten 

Anton Bruckner

Jacques Champion de Chambonnières 

Friedrich Chopin 

Girolamo Frescobaldi 

Christoph Willibald Gluck

Christoph Graupner 

Edvard Grieg 

Johan Peter Emilius Hartmann 

Jean-Baptiste Lully

Felix Mendelssohn-Bartholdy 

Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart 

Carl Nielsen 

Marc' Antonio Pasqualini

Max Reger 

Camille Saint-Saëns 

Johann Adolph Scheibe 

Arnold Schoenberg 

Franz Schubert 

Robert Schumann 

Ludwig Senfl

Richard Strauss 

Pauline Viardot

Carl Maria von Weber 

Terminology, Abbreviations, etc.

Is There a Thematic Catalog for Every Composer?

Not every composer has a thematic catalog for their works. The Library of Congress uses hundreds of existing composers' thematic catalogs to identify works when creating bibliographic records. The Music Library Association's Cataloging and Metadata Committee maintains a list of these on its website.