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This compact, attractive volume is more than an abbreviation of the Harvard Dictionary of Music. It has been written with a particular reader in mind: the amateur in the best sense of the word, whether a high school student learning his instrument or an adult with a serious interest in music but without advanced technical training.
The Brief Dictionary eliminates many entries of interest only to musicologists, and devotes ample space to informative discussions of such subjects as Symphony, Concerto, and Song. It is written in a straightforward, readable style, and avoids excessive technical terminology. The emphasis is on music which the amateur or student is likely to play or hear performed, and numerous figures and drawings of instruments clarify or illustrate the text.
The authors go beyond the cataloguing of facts; they hope to encourage intelligent interest in serious music, both for performers and for those who listen to concerts, records, or radio.