In 1829 the Leipzig music publisher Friedrich Hofmeister began publishing a series of monthly or bi-monthly catalogues of printed music, largely but not exclusively based on the products of publishers in the German-speaking world. These Monatsberichte at first comprised about 2,000 records per year, but by 1900 the annual total had risen to 13,000, yielding a total of over 330,000 records for the period 1829-1900.

This constitutes the single most important bibliographical source for the publication of music during this period; not only do the Monatsberichte permit the dating to within approximately eight weeks of any piece of printed music listed, but they include books, music periodicals, illustrations, portraits and busts of composers, so enabling a comprehensive assessment of the nature and extent of music publication at any particular time and place. They are in this way an indispensable resource for the study of musical taste and publishing trends in the nineteenth century. Further information on the Monatsberichte may be found in 'A survey of the Music Catalogues of Whistling and Hofmeister' by Rudolf Elvers and Cecil Hopkinson, as well as other items listed in the Bibliography.

Hofmeister XIX makes this key resource available on the web in a fully searchable form; all textual material from the Monatsberichte is included apart from title pages and advertisements, and the records are linked to the high-quality facsimile images of the original Monatsberichte on the website of the Österreichische Nationalbibliothek.

The origins of the project date back to the late 1980s, when the International Association of Music Libraries established a Hofmeister XIX Working Group, but implementation began only in 2004, with a grant of £294,784 from the Arts and Humanities Research Council under its Resource Enhancement scheme. The project was developed and managed by the Music Department at Royal Holloway, University of London in association with the Centre for Computing in the Humanities, King's College, London

Funded development of Hofmeister XIX has now finished. It is possible that there will at some point be a further phase of development, which would add the predecessors of the Monatsberichte (the Whistling Handbuch and the Nachträge), so extending the resource back to 1817; add the Monatsberichte up to 1945 (by which time they had become part of the Deutsche Nationalbibliografie); and provide enhanced facilities for extracting statistical information.

Please note that Hofmeister XIX is not the catalogue of a physical collection of music publications, nor is it a list of items for sale. To locate copies of items included in it, we suggest you consult the Karlsruher Virtueller Katalog, or the list of international music libraries on the Royal Holloway Golden Pages.