1. Content and Use of the Partbook-Viewer

Most of the polyphonic vocal and instrumental music prints from the 16th and 17th centuries have been published in the manifestation form of partbooks. The partbook-viewer of the BSB has been developed as an adequate online presentation tool for ca. 1,300 musical partbooks from the BSB, which have been catalogued and digitized in the DFG-project Printed sources of polyphonic music (1501-1700) from the Bavarian State Library between 2012 and 2016. In addition a further DFG-project from 2015 to 2018 enabled the library to digitize the partbook manuscripts from the Late Middle Ages to the Renaissance. On the occasion of this later project the viewer has been upgraded to present the more deeply indexed manuscripts.

The OPACplus of the Bavarian State Library ( is the main research tool for the catalogue entries of printed music and to an increasing extent also for music manuscripts, including access to the digitized form of the musical sources. The search interface of the partbook-viewer uses a shortened catalogue entry.

The default presentation tool for music prints and manuscripts in the form of partbooks is the partbook-viewer. The partbook-viewer offers an access to the standard viewer of the Bavarian State Library as well.

2. Searching

2.1 Basic Search

Search in the fields title, composer, shelfmark and year.

2.2 Search interface

Four search fields are available which are automatically joined by the operator „and“.


Possible search with key words and strings without wildcards.


Name of the composer or editor of a work. Possible search with prename and/or surname.


Fill in the shelf mark of the copy in the Bavarian State Library. Automatic truncation to the right. (e.g.: 4 48). May be refined by using precise shelfmarks (e.g.: 4 131#Beibd.1). Please note that most signature groups (,, Liturg., etc.) need a compulsory format information for folio and quarto formats whereas the leading digit can be missing in the octavo format (2 / 4 /

Year of publication

Year dates with four characters. Automatic truncation to the right with two or three characters and '*'.
Search strategies:

  • 1523
  • 152*
  • 15*
  • 1510-1578
  • -1670
  • 1630-

Use the drop-down for searching prints, manuscripts or both of them.

2.3 New search

Reset all fields in the search interface.

3. List of Results and Browsing Functionality

The list of search results will be created automatically. Each result record is supplemented by a thumbnail image of the cover or the first page of the source.

The hyperlinked fields composer, shelfmark and year may be used for browsing.

The button Bild Digitalisat anzeigen activates the presentation of the digitized source using the part-book-viewer.

4. Functionality of the Partbook-Viewer

All part books of one music publication (one bibliographical entity) are shown simultaneously on one screen.

Primary Navigation Bar

The primary navigation bar (on top of the screen) gives information on the shelfmark, composer, title, persistent URN and the number of images of the complete digitized source.
Bild Navigation Coordinated page turns for one or five pages (forward or back) or jumping to the first or last image of every part book on the screen.

The symbol Bild Listendarstellung creates a list of the partbooks contained in the digitized source, which can be switched on or off using the buttons Bild Anzeige/Ausblenden.

Bild Link zum Original Switch to the standard viewer of the MDZ, a surface equipped with several functions like the presentation of two face-in-face pages on one screen.

The symbol Bild Link zur Suchmaske leads back from the viewer surface to the start page of the part-book search interface.

The symbol Bild ToC will be generated when at least one part book contains an original index page. A click on the symbol shows all original index pages of the source.

The symbol Bild Werke is present when a digital table of contents allows to click on single titles via drop-down menu.

Individual navigation tool

Each single part book section on the screen has an own, individual navigation tool.

5. Contact

Bavarian State Library

Digital Library/Munich DigitiZation Center/Digital Preservation
Head: Dr. Markus Brantl
Ludwigstraße 16
80539 Munich
E-Mail: mdz[at]

Music Department
Head: Dr. Reiner Nägele
Ludwigstraße 16
80539 München
Fax: +49 89 28638-2479
E-Mail: musik[at]