Editing Early Music is designed as a guide to editorial predures suitable for music written from the Middle Ages to about 1830. Some of the suggestions are relevant to the editing of any music no longer in copyright. There is an introductory chapter on the principles of editing and transcribing, followed by three chronologically arranged chapters devoted to medieval and early renaissance music, the Renaissance, and baroque and classical music.
The final chapter deals with the preparation of copy and other practical matters. Some of the technicalities are presented in the form of tables and appendices; there are musical illustrations and sample score-layouts, and a bibliography. While the book does not aim to descript early notations in detail, some of the basic information is conveyed, particularly through the extensive discussion of such matters as reduced time values and the treatment of accidentals.