A thematic catalogue is a list of works accompanied by musical sketches of their opening bars.
This thematic catalogue, kept by Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart, lists all his works from 1784 until his death in 1791. He began keeping the catalogue on 9 February 1784 with his entry for the E-flat Piano Concerto, K.449.
In general Mozart uses the left-hand page to list the date of composition, its title and, more often than not, the instruments for which it was scored. Entries for works that included voices also often include the names of those who gave the first performances.
He writes these notes in German or Italian, according to the language in which the works were sung. On the opposite page are ruled five pairs of musical staves on which Mozart wrote the ‘incipits’ (from the Latin word to signify ‘here begins’) for each composition.
These two pages show the last entries into the catalogue, and include those for Die Zauberflöte ('The Magic Flute') and La Clemenza di Tito which it states it was written ‘for the coronation of his Majesty the Emperor Leopold II’.
See more of Mozart's musical diary on Turning the Pages™.
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- British Library
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