I have seen how someone used Musescore, lyrics and a special font to attach roman numerals to a score. I have also seen examples of roman numerals in Sibelius. I have no idea how that was done.

I would like to understand the current situation regarding software support for roman numerals and functions (such as T for tonic) in digital scores.

  • Which software is available that allows you to add roman numerals/functions to a score?
  • Is it always done with a workaround via lyrics and a special font (probably making any existing real lyrics useless), or does some software have dedicated data for numerals/functions?

Related question: Does MusicXML support roman numerals and/or functions?

  • Might I suggest that you separate this into (at least) two questions: one on software support, the other on representing roman-numeral or functional notation in MusicXML.
    – Dave
    Sep 28, 2017 at 22:17
  • I have done so. Sep 28, 2017 at 22:58

1 Answer 1


LilyPond also provides support for Roman numerals; one such example can be found at the LilyPond Snippet Repository. It is done, as you said, with a lyrics workaround. (There's also a more advanced version of this floating around somewhere, waiting to be added in the near future.)

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These Roman numerals can be replaced with other text. Furthermore, LilyPond's markup capabilities allow one to add arrows, symbols, etc. So you could have your T and D functions, then you can have an arrow connecting the two, or intermediary Riemannianian S/S functions, etc.

It's a very powerful tool, but there is a learning curve.

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