The Mass in B Minor is arguably Bach's greatest single work. In this short guide John Butt considers the work from many angles offering the reader basic information in a concise and accessible form. The Mass in B Minor is fraught with difficulties regarding its origin, and ambiguities concerning its function. John Butt looks again at the historical sources and provides an up-to-date summary of existing research and opinions together with new insights of his own. He gives a vivid account of the work's genesis, its historical context, and its reception by later generations. One chapter considers the work movement by movement providing the text in both Latin and English. The final group of chapters on the music itself suggests some new approaches to the work - its forms, style and overall structure - which are both critically and historically based. This is an informative and lucid guide, valuable for student and music lover alike.