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Liszt composed this virtuoso work for the dedication of the refurbished organ in Merseburg Cathedral. The manuscript was; however; only completed after the inaugural concert and the first edition was published in Holland around 1859. Today; the work is mainly played in the second version of 1872; which Liszt made at the suggestion of his pupil A.W. Gottschalg. The latter persuaded the composer to somewhat simplify the technical demands; which reflected the intentions of the older Liszt. This Henle Urtext edition comprises the 1872 version; in addition; the appendix contains an ossia version of measures 130-166. The changes between the first and second versions are discussed in the preface.
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