Thomas Braatz wrote (May 3, 2008):
(based upon information found in the NBA KB I/25 pp. 204-236)
According to Alfred Dürr, this cantata was most likely composed shortly before its first performance which probably took place on October 17, 1728. The Bach Compendium believes this might have even been a year later. In any case, no evidence of a later repeat performance during Bach’s lifetime has been found.
It can reasonably be assumed that, at the time of its first performance, the original composing score and a complete set of parts did exist. The set of parts disappeared early on, but portions of this score still exist today, albeit they are found widely distributed in many different locations.
It is reasonable to assume that, upon Bach’s death in 1750, his son, Wilhelm Friedemann inherited the score. In 1774, the latter was forced to auction off this manuscript along with others which he had in his possession at the time. Any trace of what may have happened to the score between 1774 and another auction in 1827 which featured manuscripts which had once been in WF’s possession has been lost. One can suspect that the autograph score no longer existed in its complete state at this time. Originally, Carl Friedrich Zelter (1758-1832) had wanted to obtain it for the choral library of the Berliner Singakademie; however, he was outbid by another collector of Bach manuscripts, Carl Philipp Heinrich Pistor (1778-1847), who later passed it on to his son-in-law, Adolf Friedrich Rudorff (1803-1873). The latter, in turn, bequeathed it to Friedrich Wilhelm Jähns (1809-1888) who began selling off individual pages to various collectors; for instance, pp. 13, 16, 17 and 18 were sold to Gustav Petter (1828-1868) in Vienna. Petter, in turn, cut each of these pages, containing the two arias, mvts. 2 and 4, into three parts. As a result, bits and pieces of this cantata score can be presently found in Eisenach, Berlin, Vienna, St. Petersburg, Paris, Stockholm, Switzerland, and Washington, D.C.
[Example: Mvt. 4 is divided as follows:
End of mvt. 3 and beginning mm. 1-6 of mvt. 4 (front side of page 15) Berlin Staatsbibliothek
Mvt. 4, mm. 7-24a (back side of p. 15) Berlin (same)
Mvt. 4, mm. 24b-29 (front–top side p. 16) Eisenach Bachhaus
Mvt. 4, mm. 30-32a (front–middle side p. 16) lost
Mvt. 4, mm. 32b-37 (front-bottom side p. 16) Switzerland (in a private collection)
Mvt. 4, mm. 38-43a (back-top side of p. 16) Eisenach (same)
Mvt. 4, mm. 43b-45 (back-middle side of p. 16) lost
Mvt. 4, mm. 46-51 (back-bottom side of p. 16) Switzerland (same)
Mvt. 4, mm. 52-55 (front-top side of p. 17) St. Petersburg Saltykow-Stschedrin Library
Mvt. 4, mm. 56-59a (front-middle side of p. 17) Paris Bibliothèque Nationale
Mvt. 4, mm. 59b-66 (front-bottom side of p. 17) privately owned unknown
Mvt. 4, mm. 67-69 (back-top side of p. 17) St. Petersburg (same)
Mvt. 4, mm. 70-72 (back-middle side of p. 17) Paris (same)
Mvt. 4, mm. 73-end (back-bottom side of p. 17) private owner unknown]
The watermark for this score is unique. This makes the dating somewhat uncertain as indicated above. The condition of the various parts of the score is unbelievably poor: the ink has eaten its way through the paper which is quite brown and soiled in places. The notes and text are extremely difficult to decipher with inkspots, crossouts, corrections and irregularly flowing ink compounding the fact that this is a composing score. The pages, or segments thereof, have had their edges frequently cut (the NBA KB gives the varying sizes of the pages which at one time were uniformly large).
Unfortunately, for Alfred Dörffel who edited this cantata for the BGA (Leipzig, March, 1891), not a single part of Bach’s autograph score was available to him for consideration in his editing process. The NBA documents how difficult it was to decipher Bach’s intentions from mostly photocopies of the original. All of this is explained in detail in the NBA KB.
Although the first 248 measures of mvt. 1 have been irretrievably lost, there still remain 33 measures which give an idea of what Bach had originally intended. The greatest difficulty appears to be in recreating the 3 independently treated woodwinds (2 oboes, 1 Taille). A reconstruction of BWV 1052 to make it fit this cantata has been undertaken, but the NBA presents only the existing 33 measures in its printed score. The original source for this mvt. is a violin concerto, presented as a reconstruction by Wilfried Fischer in NBA VII/7. Reconstructions of this as an organ concerto have been attempted by F.A. Theill (Musikverlag Forberg, Bonn, 1985) and by Ralph Schureck (in a private English printing with details not available) and explained in detail in his article “The Restauration of a lost Bach sinfonia for organ and orchestra, based on a revised list of sources for Cantata 188 and related works” in Musicology 5, 1979, pp. 206-209.