Once Verdi had become Italy's preeminent opera composer, he wrote only a few instrumental compositions, most notably the String Quartet in E Minor of 1873. He originally wanted to keep this quartet - first performed in his hotel for a few friends - private, but he eventually allowed its publication. Following its 1876 public premiere in Paris with the celebrated violinist Camillo Sivori, it soon became well known all over Europe and the United States. Though several recordings are available and the piece is regularly performed, all of these performances use later editions that do not live up to the composer's intentions. In contrast, this critical edition is based on his autograph score, preserved at the Naples conservatory, as well as contemporary manuscript parts, early editions, and Verdi's own instructions for performance.Verdi wrote as gifts for admirers the three piano works - Romance sans paroles, Valzer, and an album leaf for Francesco Florimo - also included here. Editor Gundula Kreuzer traces their origins, sources, and performance questions - as well as the string quartet's - in her introduction. Her critical commentary details editorial problems and solutions.