[Bach, Johann Sebastian. (1685-1750)] Gebser, Johann Ernst.
Five Early Copyist Manuscripts of Keyboard Works
An interesting group of five copyist manuscripts of selected keyboard works by J. S. Bach, ca. 1820s-1830s, in the hand of Johann Ernst Gebser and with his signature and stamp on the title page of each. The works represented are the Goldberg Variations [BWV 988], the Canonic Variations on "Von Himmel Hoch" [BWV 769], two Preludes and Fugues in C [BWV 546 and 547], two ricercars from the Musical Offering [BWV 1079], and a selection of chorale preludes, including several from the Kirnberger preludes and several misattributed to Bach. Each manuscript bearing the signature of Ernst Gebser. One volume includes a postscript noting that Bach's complete organ works can be purchased from the music publisher Tobias Haslinger. Each separately sewn with cardboard or paper covers, with one exception. Overall foxing and toning, some light water stains and a few edge tears, but structurally sound, very legible, and overall in fine condition.
Viertter Theil Clavier Uebung, bestehend in einer Aria fürs Clavier von Johann Sebastian Bach
[Goldberg Variations, BWV 988]. 31 pp. Unlabeled blue cardboard covers. 8 x 13 inches (20.5 x 33 cm).
Canonische Veränderung über das Weihnachtslied, Von Himmel hoch da komm ich her, von Johann Sebastian Bach [BWV 769]. 10 pp. Heavier wear to the paper cover, with one loss at the top edge. 8 x 13 inches (20.5 x 33 cm).
Zwei Praeludium und Zwei Fugen von Johann Sebastian Bach [Prelude and Fugue in C major, BWV 547, and Prelude and Fugue in C minor, BWV 546]. 18 pp. Heart-shaped title label. 8 x 13 inches (20.5 x 33 cm).
Ricercata super Thema Regium par Johann Sebastian Bach [Ricercar a 3 and Ricercar a 6 from Musical Offering, BWV 1079]. Oblong, without covers. 14 pp. 12.75 x 10.5 inches (32 x 26.5 cm).
Choral Vorspiele für die Orgel von J. S. Bach, 1tes und 2tes Heft [Contents: BWV 769, variations V, III, and IV; Fughetta on Vom Himmel Hoch, BWV 700; Gott der Vater wohn uns bei, BWV 748 (spurious; composed by Johann Gottfried Walther); Christ unser Herr zum Jordan kam, BWV 684; Schmücke dich, o liebe Seele, BWV 759 (spurious, composed by Gottfried August Homilius); Fuga sopra Durch Adams Fall, BWV 705; Wir Christenleut', BWV 710; Ach Gott und Herr, BWV 693 (spurious, composed by Johann Gottfriend Walther).] 23 pp. Heart-shaped title label. 8 x 13 inches (20.5 x 33 cm).
Johann Ernst Gebser is responsible for a number of manuscripts identified by the Bach-Archiv, Leipzig as dating from the 1820s, and other later examples of his hand can further be seen on www.bachdigital.de. The present manuscripts, hitherto unrecorded, date from the height of 19th century Bach revival and constitute an important new source for the works here included.