This catalogue was first envisaged as a biography of Pleyel, with the traditional appended list of works plus an account of the music publishing enterprise he founded after he left Strasbourg to settle in Paris. As the project progressed, however, it became obvious that the vast number of Pleyel's compositions, together with the detailed documentation needed to clarify the interrelationships of the numerous arrangements and variants, required a separate publication. It was equally clear that the authoritative biography could not be written until the snarled web of his works was untangled and the compositions identified with more precision than had been previously attempted. The time had unquestionably arrived to,abandon the helplessness and resignation evinced by scholars for over a century when confronted with the ordering of Pleyel's oeuvre. It had to be faced head on.
Abigail Benton Sivan: