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 (ûr′tĕkst′, o͞or′-)
The original text, as of a musical score or a literary work.

[German : ur-, original; see Ursprache + Text, text (from Middle High German, from Late Latin textus); see text.]
American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fifth Edition. Copyright © 2016 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.


1. (Linguistics) the earliest form of a text as established by linguistic scholars as a basis for variants in later texts still in existence
2. (Music, other) an edition of a musical score showing the composer's intentions without later editorial interpolation
[from ur- original + text]
Collins English Dictionary – Complete and Unabridged, 12th Edition 2014 © HarperCollins Publishers 1991, 1994, 1998, 2000, 2003, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2011, 2014


(ˈʊərˌtɛkst, ˈɜr-)

n. (sometimes cap.)
the original form of a text, esp. of a musical composition.
Random House Kernerman Webster's College Dictionary, © 2010 K Dictionaries Ltd. Copyright 2005, 1997, 1991 by Random House, Inc. All rights reserved.
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References in periodicals archive ?
Also, the presentation of urtexts would be enhanced if, for ease of reference, the notes on each author in each introduction and its appendix were positioned after each urtext's title heading.
He sets up a nice contrast between the "reverential disinterring of musical masterpieces" (p.vii), by those claiming fidelity to Urtexts, and the "sad catalog of corruption" (p.280), exemplified by those who added their own (sometimes not particularly relevant or gratifying) flourishes to compositions.
Experience has shown that most publishers, even of 'Urtexts', will not yet accept such flouting of notational or engraving conventions widely regarded as 'laws'" (Debussy Studies, 97-98).
Ironically, perhaps, it is for this reason not really an Urtext as advertised, but a collation of several Urtexts.
By presenting some of the Urtexts for Balzac's 'cathedrale de papier', this anthology therefore also complements Vachon's edited proceedings of the 1994 Montreal conference entitled Balzac.
The original texts (Urtexts) are then reconstructed (pp.