Thomas Braatz wrote (July 29, 2002):
BWV 168 Tue Rechnung! Donnerwort
The autograph score is in the BB (Deutsche Staatsbibliothek Berlin.) Listed in the estate of C.P.E. Bach in 1790 along ‘with parts’ was then in the Berliner Singakademie manuscript library. When the BB acquired it in 1855, the parts were specified as not being the original ones. The condition of the score is moderately good. There is damage by “Tintenfraß” [the ink eating its way through the paper – does anyone know the technical term for this in English? Jim? Anyone?] The manuscript was restored twice in 1942 and in 1966.
At the top of the 1st sheet of music of the score, Bach wrote:
J J. Dominica [‘Dominica’ usually appears in an abbreviated form in Bach’s autograph scores] 9 post Trinitatis
and at the very end of the music (after the final chorale):
The 13 original parts are variously distributed:
9 instrumental parts + Violino II [doublet and fragment] + Soprano part are in the Princeton University Library, USA
the Alto part is in the Fitzwilliam Museum, Cambridge, England
the Tenor par is in the BB in Berlin Germany
The Bass part, Violino I (doublet), and the remaining fragment of Violino II are missing
It is not certain whether the original parts were in C.P.E. Bach’s possession, or whether these were later copies of these. It is possible that C.P.E. Bach had the originals for a while, but because the Rudorff manuscript collection included them at the beginning of the 19th century, it is likely that they were acquired via W.F. Bach. In the 1840’s Rudorff either gave them away or loaned them to Friedrich Wilhelm Jähns. The BG did not know where these parts were. Jähns either gave away or sold them at an auction date in 1851 where they were noted as being up for sale. At this point the Soprano part disappeared entirely until 1977 when it was auctioned off by Pierre Berès in Paris. Notes that accompanied the sale indicate that it was sold in 1882 by a bookseller, Lepke, and that it had been in possession of Karl Eckert. The Alto part at the time the BG published the cantata was in the possession of a Mr. Künzel of Leipzig. In 1933, the Fitzwilliam Museum received this part from the estate of James Stewart Henderson. The Tenor part has been in the BB since 1876 where it was received as a gift from Professor Wagener in Marburg. After Jähns’ death in 1888, some of the Bach manuscripts in his possession were returned to the Rudorff family. It appears that Rudorff attempted 3 times to auction of the parts in 1893-1895. After Ernst Rudorff’s death in 1916, his collection of Bach manuscripts went to the Peters music library in Leipzig. Since 1945, these original parts were in private hands (the Walter Hinrichsen Collection.)
The Violino II doublet appeared for the 1st time in 1930 at an auction of the Leo Liepmannssohn firm in Berlin. It was already at that time only a fragment. In 1965 this fragment reappeared again as a private collector, Fred Baerwald, put it up for auction with Charles Hamilton in New York. In 1966 Baerwald donated it to the Princeton University Library.
There were 6 copiers involved in the copying out of the parts. The main copiers are Johann Andreas Kuhnau, Christian Gottlob Meißner, and Johann Heinrich Bach + 3 unknown copiers. J.S. Bach’s contribution to the parts was correction and additional dynamics, articulation, phrasing marks and ornamentation.
The 1st performance took place on July 29, 1725. Possibly there was a subsequent performance the very next year on August 18, 1726.
A printed version of the text was published as a collection of cantata texts, “Evangelische Andachts=Opffer” by Salomo Franck, Weimar, 1715. Bach made no changes to the text.
The beginning words of the cantata, “Tue Rechnung” were borrowed from Luke 23:30: “Dann werden sie anfangen, zu sagen zu den Bergen: Fallet über uns! Und zu den Hügeln: Decket uns!“
The final chorale verse is basically the same as Bartholomäus Ringwaldt's (1588) "Herr Jesu Christ, du höchstes Gut."