Little or nothing is known of the origins of the Concerto in B flat. On the basis of style the work appears to date from the late 1780s and may have been composed around the same time as the Viola Concerto in D. This edition is based on a set of MS parts formerly belonging to Ossec Monastery and now preserved in the Narodn Muzeum in Prague. The wrapper reads: Concerto in B / per il / Viola Principale / Violino Primo et Secondo / Oboe Primo et Secondo / Corno Primo et Secondo / Viola / Basso. / Del Siglre F: A: Hoffmeister. / Pro me. I.S. The parts are written in the same hand throughout and are for the most part fairly accurate. The solo part is not overburdened with dynamic markings and articulations although there is sufficient detail to give a good indication of the composer's original intentions.
In the absence of the autograph score or a set of authentic parts this edition endeavours to keep as close as possible to the source. The style and notation of articulation and dynamic markings have been standardised throughout, and, where missing, markings have been reconstructed from parallel passages. These are indicated by the use of dotted slurs or brackets where appropriate. Like most eighteenthcentury sources, the Prague parts are inconsistent at times in their notation of appoggiature ; these too have been standardised to minimise confusion. Obvious wrong notes have been corrected without comment; editorial emendations with no authority from the source are placed within brackets. Dianne James Allan Badley