Saint-Georges Symphony No. 2 in D - key signature, accidentals, editing?

Edited: March 26, 2021, 9:19 PM · Can anyone help with this manuscript that I'm investigating of Joseph Bologne, Chevalier de Saint-Georges' Symphony No. 2 in D:

1. At the beginning of the second section, the second scale is B minor, written as harmonic with G and A#. I have no formal background in this, just a gut feeling that I'd have expected melodic with G# and A#. I've listened to a few recordings and am unable to discern by ear.

2. 7 measures later, the C is apparently sharp from the key signature, but it's clearly part of an A minor segment and has to be natural, which is consistent with what I hear in recordings.

3. I forgot to mark this but the first scale in the second section is apparently A major. I think I hear G# in recordings but am not sure. I'd have expected both scales to have the leading tone but there is no accidental written for the G#.

Would these be intended ambiguity, actual errors, would the musicians of the time just have known what was meant, etc.? How would I go about finding modern scholarly(?) edited parts? (I'm only familiar with student string orchestra repertoire sources.)

Similarly, does anyone have firmer information about Bologne vs. Boulogne? I've done some light internet research, it seems it may have been misspelled, case of mistaken identity that dragged on, translation/phonetic differences when entering English alphabet, or something, and multiple reputable sources and entities have it differently.

Replies (4)

Edited: March 26, 2021, 9:51 PM · Check IMSLP. You'll find answers to your questions or at least hints at how to begin to look for them. BTW the composer's family name is Saint-Georges, hence you find him under S.

Link to the work page:
Somebody typeset a score; you can check how that person solved your accidental-problems.

Check also:,_Joseph_Bologne
You'll find the various spellings of his name (in the 18th century spelling rules were looser than nowadays); "your" symphony is listed under the "collections" tab at the bottom under the name "2 symphonies op. 11".

March 26, 2021, 10:58 PM · Ah, thanks, I should have said, I've checked IMSLP, which is where I found the manuscript. One editor/typesetter retains the first A scale's G as written, makes the B minor into melodic with G#, and does not correct the C# to C natural (and doesn't mention this movement specifically in the commentary). The other editor retains both scales as written (even though I think the G# in A major is actually played by the below orchestras) but adds the C natural accidental. Hence, inconclusive information and asking if anyone has more insight!

I've listened to Tafelmusik Baroque Opera Orchestra (appears to be the most common, I had to find another one because I have trouble listening to Baroque tuning), Orchestre de Chambre de Versailles, and Omaha Symphony (it was on their website).

March 27, 2021, 2:19 PM · Ok, your specific questions:

Generally: If the source can be interpreted as correct one would prefer keeping the accidentals as they are--unless one has a good musical or practical reason to do the opposite.
1. At tempo the difference between a melodic and harmonic scale is barely audible. I'd go for melodic just because it is easier to play.
2. I don't see that as a-minor, the chord in that measure is e-minor, overall the aim is b-minor (at the forte). e-minor of course requires c natural.
3. That scale is in unison; no harmony there to clearly set the key. I'd defer to the source here and assume that it is in D.

Edited: March 28, 2021, 7:49 PM · Thanks for your input! I'll keep the principles in mind for my future looking-at-manuscripts.

1. I see that would count as a practical reason! (and perhaps I was thinking it because I have the impression of encountering melodic more often than harmonic)

2. I was "hearing in my head" the next measure in A minor but I see that isn't supported by the actual harmony. I think C natural is better but C# (making it Dorian?) might work, just perhaps unexpected). Would this be equally valid as "assume the source is correct and keep the C# in the key signature" as well as "for musical reasons of supporting E minor, change it to C natural"? I assume editors make these decisions in their editing process and it looks like one of the editors did the latter.

3. This seems sound, as I'm not sure if I really heard the G# or if I imagined it because of "expecting" it after seeing the score.

(edit: On further inspection, I found a few G#'s that are missing in A major harmony so am inclined to think missing accidentals are actual errors. Viola having the B minor scale in natural has to be a mistake too.)

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