1.2 About the documentation

This section explains the different portions of the documentation.


About the Learning Manual

This book explains how to begin learning LilyPond, as well as explaining some key concepts in easy terms. You should read these chapters in a linear fashion.

There is a paragraph See also at the end of each section, which contains cross-references to other sections: you should not follow these cross-references at first reading; when you have read all of the Learning Manual, you may want to read some sections again and follow cross-references for further reading.

The Learning Manual also contains appendices which are not part of the recommended linear reading. They may be useful for later viewing:


About the Music Glossary

Music glossary this explains musical terms, and includes translations to various languages. If you are not familiar with music notation or music terminology (especially if you are a non-native English speaker), it is highly advisable to consult the glossary.


About the Notation Reference

This book explains all the LilyPond commands which produce notation. It assumes that readers are familiar with the concepts in the Learning Manual.

The Notation Reference also contains appendices with useful reference charts.


About the Application Usage

This book explains how to execute the programs and how to integrate LilyPond notation with other programs.


About the Snippet List

LilyPond Snippet List: this shows a selected set of LilyPond snippets from the LilyPond Snippet Repository (LSR). All the snippets are in the public domain.

Please note that this document is not an exact subset of LSR. LSR is running a stable LilyPond version, so any snippet which demonstrates new features of a development version must be added separately. These are stored in ‘input/new/’ in the LilyPond source tree.

The list of snippets for each subsection of the Notation Reference are also linked from the See also portion.


About the Internals Reference

Internals Reference: this is a set of heavily cross linked HTML pages which document the nitty-gritty details of each and every LilyPond class, object, and function. It is produced directly from the formatting definitions in the source code.

Almost all formatting functionality that is used internally is available directly to the user. For example, most variables that control thickness values, distances, etc., can be changed in input files. There are a huge number of formatting options, and all of them are described in this document. Each section of the Notation Reference has a See also subsection, which refers to the generated documentation. In the HTML document, these subsections have clickable links.


Other documentation

There are a number of other sources of information which may be very valuable.


Other languages: français, español, deutsch.

Learning Manual