Displaying figured bass

Figured bass can be displayed using the FiguredBass context, or in most staff contexts.

When displayed in a FiguredBass context, the vertical location of the figures is independent of the notes on the staff.

<<
  \relative {
    c''4 c'8 r8 c,4 c'
  }
  \new FiguredBass {
    \figuremode {
      <4>4 <10 6>8 s8
      <6 4>4 <6 4>
    }
  }
>>

[image of music]

In the example above, the FiguredBass context must be explicitly instantiated to avoid creating a second (empty) staff.

Figured bass can also be added to Staff contexts directly. In this case, the vertical position of the figures is adjusted automatically.

<<
  \new Staff = "myStaff"
  \figuremode {
    <4>4 <10 6>8 s8
    <6 4>4 <6 4>
  }
  %% Put notes on same Staff as figures
  \context Staff = "myStaff" {
    \clef bass
    c4 c'8 r8 c4 c'
  }
>>

[image of music]

When added in a Staff context, figured bass can be displayed above or below the staff.

<<
  \new Staff = "myStaff"
  \figuremode {
    <4>4 <10 6>8 s8
    \bassFigureStaffAlignmentDown
    <6 4>4 <6 4>
  }
  %% Put notes on same Staff as figures
  \context Staff = "myStaff" {
    \clef bass
    c4 c'8 r8 c4 c'
  }
>>

[image of music]

The horizontal alignment of numbers in a figured bass stack that have more than a single digit can be controlled with the context property figuredBassLargeNumberAlignment.

<<
  \new Voice {
    \clef bass
    r2 d | d d | a2
  }
  \new FiguredBass \figuremode {
    s2 <10+ 8> |
    \set figuredBassLargeNumberAlignment = #RIGHT
    <11 9>2
    \set figuredBassLargeNumberAlignment = #LEFT
    <10+ 9>2 |
    <_+>2
  }
>>

[image of music]

The vertical distance of figured bass elements can be controlled with subproperties minimum-distance and padding of staff-staff-spacing.

<<
  { \clef bass g,2 c, }
  \figures {
    \once \override BassFigureLine
                    .staff-staff-spacing.minimum-distance = 3
    <7 _-> <7- _->
  }
>>

[image of music]

Predefined commands

\bassFigureStaffAlignmentDown, \bassFigureStaffAlignmentUp, \bassFigureStaffAlignmentNeutral.

See also

Snippets: Chords.

Internals Reference: BassFigure, BassFigureAlignment, BassFigureLine, BassFigureBracket, BassFigureContinuation, FiguredBass.

Known issues and warnings

To ensure that continuation lines work properly, it is safest to use the same rhythm in the figure line as in the bass line.

<<
  {
    \clef bass
    \repeat unfold 4 { f16. g32 } f8. es16 d8 es
  }
  \figures {
    \bassFigureExtendersOn
    % The extenders are correct here,
    % with the same rhythm as the bass.
    \repeat unfold 4 { <6 4->16. <6 4->32 }
    <5>8. r16 <6>8 <6\! 5->
  }
>>
<<
  {
    \clef bass
    \repeat unfold 4 { f16. g32 } f8. es16 d8 es
  }
  \figures {
    \bassFigureExtendersOn
    % The extenders are incorrect here,
    % even though the timing is the same.
    <6 4->4 <6 4->4
    <5>8. r16 <6>8 <6\! 5->
  }
>>

[image of music]


LilyPond Notation Reference v2.25.13 (development-branch).