This is as much an encyclopedia as a dictionary. Its 20 volumes embrace the entire world of musical knowledge, offering over 22,500 alphabetically arranged articles, by 2,300 contributors from over 70 different countries.
This classic reference work, the best one-volume music dictionary available, has been brought completely up to date in this new edition. Combining authoritative scholarship and lucid, lively prose, the Fourth Edition of The Harvard Dictionary of Music is the essential guide for musicians, students, and everyone who appreciates music. The Harvard Dictionary of Music has long been admired for its wide range as well as its reliability. This treasure trove includes entries on all the styles and forms in Western music; comprehensive articles on the music of Africa, Asia, Latin America, and the Near East; descriptions of instruments enriched by historical background; and articles that reflect today's beat, including popular music, jazz, and rock. Throughout this Fourth Edition, existing articles have been fine-tuned and new entries added so that the dictionary fully reflects current music scholarship and recent developments in musical culture. Encyclopedia-length articles by notable experts alternate with short entries for quick reference, including definitions and identifications of works and instruments. More than 220 drawings and 250 musical examples enhance the text. This is an invaluable book that no music lover can afford to be without.
Both the New Grove and Harvard dictionaries have introductory articles on sources which should be consulted.
The article in the New Grove is exceptionally thorough:
I. Introduction, vol. 23, p.792
II. Western plainchant, vol. 23, p.817
III. Secular monophony, vol. 23, p.846
IV. Organum and discant, vol. 23, p.868
V. Early motet, vol. 23, p.874
VI. English polyphony 1270-1400, vol. 23, p.877
VII. French polyphony 1300-1420, vol. 23, p.882
VIII. Italian polyphony c1325-c1420, vol. 23, p.888
IX. Renaissance polyphony, vol. 23, p.892
"Sources of instrumental ensemble music to 1630", vol. 24, p.1
"Sources of keyboard music to 1660", vol. 24, p.19
Full-text access to the following standard reference sources: The New Grove Dictionary of Music & Musicians, The New Grove Dictionary of Opera, The New Grove Dictionary of Jazz, The Oxford Dictionary of Music, and The Oxford Companion to Music. (11 simultaneous users.) All of these are also available in print in the reference section of the Performing Arts Library. Oxford Music Online is an excellent complement to Classical Music Reference Library (also available through ResearchPort) and the two resources should be used in tandem.