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University Library, University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign

Sacred Music and Hymnology: Finding Primary Sources

MPAL Microfilm Collection

To supplement use of The Hymn Tune Index, MPAL also houses a collection of hundreds of microfilm copies of hymn editions, primarily dating from the 16th century to 1820.  Patrons interested in this collection may review the microfilm inventory below.  Please inquire at the Music and Performing Arts circulation desk to borrow microfilm for in-library use. 

Locating Music Manuscripts and Early Printed Editions

Finding a Digital Copy

In some cases, scores and manuscripts have been digitized and are posted online for public access.  While this is not always the case, there are several ways you can check to see if a copy is available online.  If you know the institution that houses the item, check their website to see if the item is part of any digital collections.  If not, there are several online resources that specialize in facilitating access to digitized materials.

Finding Non-Musical Sources

When doing music research, it is important to contextualize the musical work(s) with cultural events and objects of that time. Some types of sources will help with this, such as newspapers, books, and article clippings containing topics such as book reviews, performance reviews, and current events.

Subject Guide

Music and Performing Arts Library's picture
Music and Performing Arts Library
1300 Music Building
1114 W. Nevada St.
Urbana, IL 61801
Subjects:Dance, Music, Theatre