With only one exception, the catalogue entry for each impression ends with a list of the copies held in designated libraries or private collections. Arranged in alphabetical order by siglum, the successive descriptions each contain three elements:
siglum of the library or private collection;
dimensions of the copy in millimetres (height by width), set off from the shelfmark by a dash.
When multiple copies are held by a library, these are classified by shelfmark under the relevant siglum in ascending alphabetical and/or numerical order.
also contain information about the following:
The abbreviaton '(v)', found immediately after the dimensions, indicates that a copy has been bound in a volume with other scores. In such cases the composition and original dimensions of the score may well have been altered and often cannot be determined.
colour of the title page
Cognate copies produced with differently coloured TPs are catalogued together under the relevant entry, with individual descriptions of the colour used in each score (e.g. 44–1a-ME, 45–1a-ME, 66–1-EW).
contents of albums and wrappers/covers
In cases where albums classified together differ in composition, TP and/or wrappers/covers, details of these various elements – which may be unique to a given copy – are provided in the relevant description (e.g. 32/1–1a-Sam, 32/2–1-Sam, MEG–1a-CH, MFM–1-E). The same holds for the content of wrappers, which are described only for those copies that still possess them (e.g. 32/1–1c-Sam, 52–1-Sm, 52–1-B&H).
composition of defective copies and those in poor condition
Detailed information about the composition of such scores is provided (e.g. 1–1c-Sam (D-Bds copy), 20–1a-Sm (F-Ppo copy)); for those lacking TPs and for which classification is therefore problematic, we propose possible alternative classifications (e.g. 15–1a-B&H (second PL-Wbfc copy), 26–1-B&H (ditto)). Where sets of instrumental parts are incomplete, we identify the parts that are present but not the missing ones (e.g. 3–1a-ME, 8–1-Sm, 65–1-B&H, GDC–1-Sam). For copies in poor condition we generally explain which elements have been damaged or destroyed (e.g. 14–1-KI (F-Po copy), 21–1a-B&H (PL-Wam copy)). Where a score appears defective because a final blank leaf is missing, a brief indication of the ‘correct’ number of leaves is given with reference to the detailed information under ‘Comments’ (e.g. 2–2-HAt, 7–6a-KI). The sole exception to this is Wessel’s edition of Op. 28, where it is impossible to determine the original composition of most copies in which the final blank leaf is no longer present.
provenance of copies
belonging to Chopin’s pupils (i.e. Dubois-O’Meara, Orda, Scherbatoff, Stirling, Zaleska-Rosengardt) or his sister Ludwika Jędrzejewicz
stamps of libraries or private owners
Full details of library stamps are provided (e.g. 8–1b-KI) except those of the libraries that currently hold given scores or their institutional precursors (e.g. Bibliothèque royale → Bibliothèque nationale; British Museum → British Library). Nor do we describe the stamps of libraries that previously owned the scores if they are located in the same city or town as the current holding institution (most cases of this type involve no more than a transfer or exchange of collections – e.g. the partial transfer of F-Pc’s holdings to F-Pn in 1964). The same exclusion applies to the stamps, labels and bookplates in copies from the few private collections catalogued here.
stamps of publishers, their agents and successors, etc.
Stamps of the publisher to whom we attribute the production of an impression (as reflected in the relevant edition/impression code) are not identified by name, instead being referred to simply as ‘publisher’s signature/round/oval/rectangular/blind/decorative stamp’ (e.g. 15–1b-Sm, 15–1-B&H). However, we do specify any differences between the address of a publisher within a stamp as against its printed counterpart on the respective TP (e.g. 5–1-SC (US-CAh copy), 66–1e-GE, 67–1c-GE). The stamps of successors to the original publisher are identified using the standardised form(s) shown at Sigla of publishers. (For example, the stamps ‘Brandus et C’ and ‘Brandus et C’ are cited under ‘Copies’ as ‘Brandus signature stamp’, likewise ‘Brandus & C’ and ‘Brandus & C’; similarly, the stamps ‘G Brandus & S Dufour’ and ‘G. Brandus & S. Dufour’ appear as ‘Brandus et Dufour signature stamp’.) Quasi-facsimile transcriptions of successor stamps are provided only exceptionally. We also give full details of other stamps if they yield significant information about the copy’s identity and history (e.g. 32–1-Sm, 39–1a-B&H, 40–2a-B&H).
We either fully describe or provide salient information about the labels found on various scores (e.g. 15–2f-B&H, 50–2-ME (PL-Kj copy), 32–2a-Sam (PL-Wekier copy), Posth–1c-Sam (A-Wgm copy)). These include paste-overs containing both printed and handwritten text (e.g. 10/1-6–3a-KI (GB-Lcm copy)) or simply the latter (e.g. 2–1a-W, 25/1-6–1d-B&H (D-Mbs copy)). No reference is made to the shape of labels, most of which are rectangular; any deviations from this norm seem to have no bearing on the date or identity of the copies in question.
STPs in the ‘EO’ series reprinted by G. Brandus et S. Dufour and their successors
Here we specify the name of the printer and the accompanying numeric designation, the latter of which almost certainly relates to the year of publication (e.g. 1–1a-BR, 64/1–2a-BR). Where the STP exists in two different versions on the title page and wrapper, we cite the number of each version and the numeric designations on both of these (e.g. 1–1a-BR (F-Pn copies), 15–1c-BRg (first A-Wn copy)).
Even when stamps,
signatures and/or annotations appear on more than one page of a copy, their
presence is described with regard to only a single page, usually the TP.
With few exceptions,
no reference is made to the following:
handwritten annotations deemed to be insignificant (including those in the category described immediately below)
stamps, labels, etc. containing only numbers or dates unrelated to the score’s publication
stamps and signatures which are illegible or essentially incomplete (i.e. salient information is missing)
supplementary pagination added either mechanically or by hand
presence of loose singletons
presence of watermarks (for scores printed on watermarked paper)
presence of bindings, covers and associated flyleaves which are not original.
It should be noted that the abbreviations STP, CTP, HT and advt are not explicitly stated in the descriptions of the contents of wrappers. The presence of HTs can easily be identified from the transcriptions of their text, which we always provide in full (e.g. 18–1a-Sm (first F-Pn copy), 52–1-B&H (D-Dl and D-Mbs copies)). Similarly, the number of the version located immediately after the abbreviated title (e.g. 15–2b-B&H (second A-Wn copy)) usually allows one to deduce that a description concerns either a STP or an advertisement which exists in multiple versions. However, more subtle inferences must be made in the case of certain material known only in one version but relevant to more than one catalogue entry (and thus presented in a short form): this includes two STPs (BALLADEN|FÜR DAS PIANOFORTE|VON|FR. CHOPIN and WALZER|FÜR DAS PIANOFORTE|VON|FR. CHOPIN), one CTP (IMPROMPTUS|FÜR DAS PIANOFORTE|VON|FR. CHOPIN) and numerous advertisements (e.g. 15–1c-BRg (first A-Wn copy), 15–1a-B&H (A-Wgm copy)). Supplementary information about the content of these elements can however be derived from the fact that STPs and CTPs are found only on the front page of wrappers, while any advertisements appear on the remaining pages thereof. Useful cross-reference can also be made to Appendices I & II on the basis of this information.
Only rarely do we comment on the imposition of scores. It is often difficult if not impossible to reconstruct the original state of various kinds of publication, namely large collective volumes which do not retain their original bindings (e.g. albums, Méthode des Méthodes), copies bound into volumes by libraries, and scores which have been restored in some way.
 For most copies of English first editions without TPs cross-reference is made to the section Publications of Wessel and his successors (Ashdown & Parry, Edwin Ashdown), see especially Table 16.
 In just three cases reference is made to physical features from which one can infer the structure of the score as originally published (see A-Wn copies of 6–1a-KI and 66–1-Sam; GB-Lbl copies of 74/10–1a-KO and 74/1–1a-KO). For discussion of the means by which certain large-scale publications were assembled see also Format, dimensions and physical contents, note 3.