Johann Sebastian Bach

Bach, Johann Sebastian

German composer (1685-1750). Autograph music manuscript: a section of the composing score of church cantata BWV 188, "Ich habe meine Zuversicht". [Leipzig, ca. 17 October 1728]. 2 pp. (approx. 158 x 195 mm), comprising bars 59b-66 and 73-76 of the 4th movement, scored for alto with cello and organ obbligato, on four systems of four hand-drawn staves. The lower half of fol. 17 of the original manuscript. Upper system affected by i.
$ 801,040 / 680.000 € (81441)

BWV 188 is a cantata for the 21st Sunday after Trinity, composed most likely for 17 October 1728 (or possibly 6 November 1729), the text as often at this period drawn from Picander (Chr. Fr. Henrici, "Ernst-Schertzhaffte und Satyrische Gedichte", Leipzig 1728). The ensemble is made up of four voices, two oboes, viola, organo obbligato and basso continuo. In the fourth movement, the dramatic heart of the cantata, the text "Unerforschlich ist die Weise" ("The ways of the Lord are past understanding", a meditation on the cross and human suffering) is elaborated as a dark, expressive aria for alto voice set against a virtuoso organ obbligato, "a complex and ever-changing kaleidoscope of richly entwined rhythms and melodies" (J.

Mincham, The Cantatas of J. S. Bach). The key, E minor, is one that Bach frequently associates with the crucifixion. The present fragment comprises 11½ bars from the conclusion of the movement, including the words "... Seinen führt, unerforschlich ist die Weise, Wie der Herr die Seinen führt, unerforschlich ist die Weise, Wie …". – The autograph of BWV 188 suffered more vicissitudes than most, with the first 10 of the 18 leaves being lost at an early date (probably before the 1827 auction), taking with them the great majority of the first movement (which can be identified as a reworking of the last movement of a lost violin concerto, also used in the clavier concerto BWV 1052). The remaining leaves are now widely scattered, with four leaves being cut up (as here) into two or even three pieces; but although the resulting fragments are now located in ten holdings in eight countries, they are nevertheless sufficiently continuous to enable the 2nd to 5th movements to be reconstituted without significant lacunae. The present fragment, which comprises the lower half of fol. 17, is identified in the "Kritischer Bericht" of the Neue Bach-Ausgabe as A14 ("unbekannter Privatbesitz"). The same source notes that the marked ink acidification which has affected the upper half of the present fragment is typical of the dismembered leaves, and is in part a result of the dense compositional script of the composer, in this instance with many tripletised semi-quavers: "Die Zerteilung von einigen der anderen Blätter hat sich unmittelbar auf den Erhaltungszustand der Manuskript-Fragmente ausgewirkt, denn die Streifen sind im ganzen gesehen in schlechtem Zustand, von Tintenfraß befallen, das Papier ist stark gebräunt, und die Lesbarkeit wird zudem durch die typische Konzeptschrift Bachs, wie sie sich in vielen Partitur-Erstschriften findet, erschwert" (p. 207). – Provenance: The autograph score of BWV 188 is thought to have been among a group of manuscripts inherited by Bach’s impecunious eldest son, Wilhelm Friedemann, and sold by him at auction in 1774. Parts of the Wilhelm Friedemann Nachlass were again auctioned in 1827, being acquired by the inventor and collector Carl Philipp Heinrich Pistor (1778-1847). Pistor’s manuscripts were inherited by his son-in-law, Adolf Friedrich Rudorff (1803-73), from whom they passed to the musicologist Friedrich Wilhelm Jähns (1809-88). The present leaf was one of four acquired from Jähns by the Viennese collector Gustav Petter (1828-68), who is thought to have been responsible for their dismemberment. The last owner of the present fragment traced by the "Kritischer Bericht" is Nora Kluge (née von Hase) of Lübeck, wife of the composer and musicologist Manfred Kluge (1928-71), probably inherited from her grandfather, Oskar von Hase (1846-1921), proprietor of the music publishers Breitkopf & Härtel. Sold at auction at Christie’s, 4 November 1981, lot 144, when it passed into the collection of the Canadian chemist and physician Frederick Lewis Maitland Pattison (1923-2010; his bookplate on the portfolio’s inside front cover). ¶ Neue Bach-Ausgabe (1997), Kritischer Bericht, A14..

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Bach, Johann Sebastian

German composer (1685-1750). Autograph manuscript signed in 2 places ("Joh. Seb. Bach"). Leipzig, 26 Oct. 1743 and 1745. 2 pp. on the recto and verso of a 75 x 95 mm leaf mounted in a paper frame.
$ 565,440 / 480.000 € (81762)

Two receipts for the sum of 5 guilders, one to Martin Simon Hille, the other to Johann Bode, who is in charge of enforcing the pious foundation of Sabina Nathan: "Viel erwehntem Nathanischem Legato hat Herr Martin Simon Hille, als der Zeit Inspector obbesagten Legati, heute dato vermittelst Auszahlung derer gewöhnlichen 5 Gülden abermahlen völlige Genüge geleistet, wannenhero auch morgenden Tages in der Thomas-Kirche das Leichengedächtniß abgesungen werden soll [...]" (1743). – "Vor gegenwärtiges Jahr hat der dasige Inspector des Nathanischen Legati Herr Johann Bode, wegen Absingung eines Sterbe Liedes, vermittelst richtiger Auszahlung der legirten fünff Gülden Meißnisch völlige Genüge geleistet, so hiermit bescheiniget u.

darüber quittiret wird [...] (1745)". – The wealthy widow Sabina Nathan of Leipzig, who died in 1612, had made a bequest in her memory by having a motet for the deceased sung every year on the feast day of St. Sabina in the Lutheran Church of St. Thomas in Leipzig. Bach, as Kapellmeister of this church, carried out the task from 1726 to 1749. – One slit in a stricken-out correction due to ink corrosion, otherwise fine. Sold at Sotheby’s, 5 December 2003, lot 11. ¶ Bach-Dokumente I: Schriftstücke von der Hand Johann Sebastian Bachs (Kassel, Bärenreiter, 1963), pp. 201-203, nos. 126 & 128..

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Bach, Johann Sebastian

German composer (1685-1750). Autograph receipt signed. [Leipzig. Oblong 12mo (ca. 98 x 52 mm). 1 p., with a similar receipt for another legacy with 4 additional signatures on verso. Evenly browned, a little stained, edges a little chipped. Decoratively framed and glazed with a brass plaque and an engraved portrait (lig.
$ 212,040 / 180.000 € (82505/BN53630)

Signature by Johann Sebastian Bach, confirming in his own hand the receipt of 2 guilders ("acc[epi] - 2 fl.") from the Lobwasser Bequest. The sum was paid out around every 2nd of July to the cantor, deputy headmaster, and third teacher (tertius) at St. Thomas. Above and below Bach's signature, his colleagues Conrad Benedict Hülse and Abraham Kriegel sign for their 2 guilders. - One of Bach's several supplementary sources of income which together made up a substantial part of his Leipzig salary, this payment would in the mid-18th century have corresponded roughly to an organist's weekly wages.

The "Legatum Lobwasserianum", a legacy of 1000 guilders, was bequeathed in 1610 by a Leipzig lawyer's pious widow, Maria Lobwasser; the 50 guilders of annual interest, paid on the Feast of the Visitation, went toward supporting St Thomas's church and school personnel. - This is one of only two known receipts from Bach receiving his Lobwasser funds. The other, from 1750, was originally written on the same sheet of paper underneath the entry for 1748, but the two records were later cut apart and separated. Curiously, the relevant entry for 1749 must have been made in another, now lost document, as a date "1749" and Hülse's stricken-out signature, apparently made here in error, appear at the bottom of the present slip of paper (formerly between the 1748 and 1750 records). The small 8vo leaf, removed from a receipt book, was complete in 1908 when it was offered at C. G. Boerner's sale of "precious autographs from a Viennese private collection" (lot 3). The buyer was probably the noted Swiss collector Karl Geigy-Hagenbach, in whose "album of manuscripts by illustrious personages", published in 1925, it was again illustrated intact. The receipt's location was subsequently unknown until, in May 1986, the present upper half of the sheet appeared at Christie's manuscripts sale (lot 271). It was likely acquired there by the Canadian chemist and physician Frederick Lewis Maitland Pattison (1923-2010) and subsequently sold by the New York dealer Kenneth W. Rendell (his description pasted on the reverse of the frame) to the Musée des Lettres et Manuscrits, Paris; acquired from their sale. - In December 2014, the lower half (bearing the receipt for 1750, signed by Bach's son Johann Christian in the place of the blind and dying composer) appeared at Swann's in New York, described as having previously been in the collection of the Polish harpsichordist Wanda Landowska (1879-1959), and was bought by the Bach-Archiv in Leipzig..

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