Recordings/Discussions
Background Information
Performer Bios

Poet/Composer Bios

Additional Information

References: Main Page | Cantatas BWV 1-50 | Cantatas BWV 51-100 | Cantatas BWV 101-150 | Cantatas BWV 151-200 | Cantatas BWV 201-224 | Other Vocal BWV 225-249 | Chorales BWV 250-300 | Chorales BWV 301-350 | Chorales BWV 351-400 | Chorales BWV 401-438 | Geistliche Lieder BWV 439-507 | AMN BWV 508-524 | Vocal Works BWV Anh | BGA | NBA | BC: A | B | C | D | E | F | G | H | Sources
Discussions of BWV Numbering System: Part 1 | Part 2 | Part 3

Cantata BWV 48
Ich elender Mensch, wer wird mich erlösen
Provenance

Thomas Braatz wrote (October 13, 2002):
BWV 48 - Provenance:

The Autograph Score:

Although C. P. E. Bach most likely inherited this cantata after the death of his father, it is highly unusual that it was not listed among his (C. P. E.’s) possessions when the latter had died. There is a mixup of title pages of the score and the original parts. Such a mixup had also occurred with BWV 169. The 1st recorded owner of the score was the Berlin Singakademie. In 1855 the score was acquired by the BB (Deutsche Staatsbibliothek Berlin) where it is still located today. It was restored on February 21, 1969.

The Original Parts:

The ownership of the original parts after Bach’s death can not be reliably determined. It would appear that C. P. E. Bach had retained the folder for the original parts, but ended up with only the doublets. In the 19th century, the original parts eventually made their way to the BB where they were returned to the original folder.

The Title:

Judging by Bach’s handwriting, it would appear that J. S. Bach wrote the following title on the cover. However, it is highly unusual that Bach would give as name as “di Signore,” a phrase that is only used by Bach’s copyists.

Domin: 19 post Trinit: | Ich elender Mensch, wer wird mich etc. | a | 4 Voci | 1 Corno | 2 Hautbois | 2 Violini | Viola | con | Continuo. | di Sig. | J. S: Bach.

On the title page of the score, Bach wrote:
J. J. Concerto Doīca 19 post Trinitatis.

Two instrumental designations are as follows:
Tromba | 2 Hautb: in unisono.

There is no ‘Fine’ at the very end.

The parts with their titles written by the copyists are as follows:

1. Soprano
2. Alto
3. Tenore
4: Basso
5. Clarino
6. Hautbois all unisono
7. Violino 1mo
8. Violino 1mo (doublet)
9. Violino 2do
10. Violino 2 (doublet)
11. Viola
12. Continuo (only partially with figured bass)
13. Continuo (doublet – some mvts. with figured bass)
14. Continuo (transposed – figured bass for mvts. 2, 5 and parts of 3)

Johann Andreas Kuhnau copied 1 through 12 with the exception of the doublets which were copied by Anonymous Ia and Ii. Anonymous Ic copied 14 entirely and Christian Gottlob Meißner copied 13 except for the 1st mvt. and 5 mm. of mvt. 2 which were copied by Anonymous Im. It is not possible to determine if Bach corrected all the parts, but he certainly was responsible for all of the figured bass of 14 and parts of 12.

Text:

The author of the text could not be determined. The text of the intermediary chorale is the 4th verse of the chorale, “Ach Gott und Herr” by Martin Rutilius (1604.) Depending upon which of the hymnals from Bach’s time is consulted, the final chorale is either verse 11 or 12 of “Herr Jesu Christ, ich schrei zu dir” (Freiberg, 1620.)

Date of Composition and 1st Performance:

Based upon the watermarks in the paper used and the copyists that have been identified, the composition originated in 1723, a year in which the 19th Sunday after Trinity fell on the 3rd of October. The fact that the watermark of the paper used by Anonymous Ii is documented only in the Weimar period is of no significance since this copyist was used only during the Leipzig period. Bach probably found a blank sheet from the earlier period and happened to use it for copying a doublet.

Which Brass Instrument?

In mvts. 1, 3, and 7 the original sources list 3 different types of brass instruments:

1.) The title page (see above) lists ‘Corno’ (a horn or possibly a ‘Cornetto’)
2.) The 1st page of the score has ‘Tromba’
3.) On top of the part, Kuhnau (did he do this without consulting Bach?) wrote “Clarino” a designation that always appears on the top of the part when the brass instrument is used only to play colla parte with the cantus firmus

Since the colla parte playing is practically impossible on a natural horn/trumpet because some notes are not available to this instrument, Charles S. Terry (1932) suggested the use of a Tromba da tirarsi.

The NBA lists the following possibilities for the choice of a brass instrument:

a) Natural horn
b) Zink (Cornetto)
c) Tromba
d) Tromba da tirarsi

The NBA suggests that, despite the confusion, a preference should be given to the instrument called for in the 1st mvt.: ‘Tromba.’

The Csibas [“Die Blechblasinstrumente in J. S. Bachs Werken”] indicate that the Tromba in C should be used for the 1st mvt. and the Tromba da tirarsi for the cantus firmus in mvts. 3 (G minor) and 7 (B flat major.)

 

Cantata BWV 48: Details & Complete Recordings | Recordings of Individual Movements | Discussions: Part 1 | Part 2 | Part 3

References: Main Page | Cantatas BWV 1-50 | Cantatas BWV 51-100 | Cantatas BWV 101-150 | Cantatas BWV 151-200 | Cantatas BWV 201-224 | Other Vocal BWV 225-249 | Chorales BWV 250-300 | Chorales BWV 301-350 | Chorales BWV 351-400 | Chorales BWV 401-438 | Geistliche Lieder BWV 439-507 | AMN BWV 508-524 | Vocal Works BWV Anh | BGA | NBA | BC: A | B | C | D | E | F | G | H | Sources
Discussions of BWV Numbering System: Part 1 | Part 2 | Part 3

Introduction | Cantatas | Other Vocal | Instrumental | Performers | General Topics | Articles | Books | Movies | New
Biographies | Texts & Translations | Scores | References | Commentaries | Music | Concerts | Festivals | Tour | Art & Memorabilia
Chorale Texts | Chorale Melodies | Lutheran Church Year | Readings | Poets & Composers | Arrangements & Transcriptions
Search Website | Search Works/Movements | Terms & Abbreviations | Copyright | How to contribute | Sitemap | Links



 

Back to the Top


Last update: ýAugust 22, 2012 ý00:59:15