Music & Letters was first published in January 1920, under the initiative of its editor-in-chief, A. Fox Strangways. In his editorial for the opening volume, Fox Strangways wrote that 'music expresses, defines and communicates emotions as language does thoughts'; the issue additionally carried a pastel portrait of Elgar by William Rothenstein, and a 2-quatrain poem, entitled 'The Shyness of Beauty', by Laurence Binyon. Ever since that first issue, Music & Letters has been at the forefront of scholarly and critically engaged writing about music, covering a wide and eclectic range of topics, and with a particular emphasis on encouraging fruitful dialogue between musicology and other disciplines. It is now an internationally leading peer-reviewed journal of musical scholarship.
To celebrate the 100th anniversary of the journal's first appearance, the editors have launched a prize competition to find the very best original articles in musicology. Submissions will be assessed through double-blind peer review, following which the prize-winning articles will be selected by the Music & Letters Editorial Board. The successful entries will be published in a special anniversary issue of the journal in 2020, and each of the winning authors will additionally receive a prize of £500.
The competition opened on 1 January 2018, and the deadline for submission is 31 May 2018. The rules of the competition are given in full at https://academic.oup.com/ml/pages/centenary_anniversary_prize_competition.