Does anyone know what the "/r" in this score might mean?

Thank you so much...

unknown Score symbol

  • 13
    Need to see more of the score.
    – Tim
    Commented Oct 18, 2019 at 7:21
  • 9
    it looks like tr not /r
    – minseong
    Commented Oct 18, 2019 at 13:19
  • 2
    It would certainly be useful to know who engraved and/or published the score (to compare other examples of theirs), and indeed what the piece is (to compare other editions of it). Commented Oct 18, 2019 at 14:29
  • 11
    @CarlWitthoft that would be \r.
    – shoover
    Commented Oct 18, 2019 at 16:12
  • 1
    @shoover pedant :-) Commented Oct 18, 2019 at 18:03

2 Answers 2


This is actually tr, the notation for "trill," an embellishment (or ornament) on a note where you rapidly alternate between the main pitch and an adjacent pitch.

There are many different types of trills; the style of music (and perhaps editorial notes) will clarify exactly which type is intended.

You can check out more in the Wikipedia article.

  • Could be, but unconvinced the first letter is 't'.
    – Tim
    Commented Oct 18, 2019 at 7:22
  • 1
    Not all t's have the tail at the bottom (or, they might have a tail which is more of a serif). Commented Oct 18, 2019 at 14:28
  • 3
    @AndrewLeach But it also seems to be missing the cross at the top, which is more significant in the orthography of 't'. If it's supposed to be just the right part of the cross, it's easily mistaken for a serif on the 'r'.
    – Barmar
    Commented Oct 18, 2019 at 15:13
  • 1
    Mixing a sans-serif "t" with a serifed "r" does look odd, though. The method of printing could affect the appearance of the "t", too; are parts of the "t" missing from a piece of type, for instance?
    – chepner
    Commented Oct 19, 2019 at 15:43

Definitely a trill. A forward slash would be much taller, narrower and more slanted. Certain fonts leave the tail and the cross off the 't' almost entirely, especially when italic and bold. Below is a comparison of '/r' and 'tr' in a more standard, modern font (on the left) and an older, less common font (on the right).

enter image description here

  • 2
    Most likely accurate, but if other 'trills' are in the piece, it'd be good to be able to see them.
    – Tim
    Commented Oct 20, 2019 at 8:19
  • @Tim Yes, definitely!
    – WillRoss1
    Commented Oct 20, 2019 at 15:08
  • Considering typography, I'd say the t should not go lower than the r, but that's what it looks like to me in the scan of OP. Commented Oct 20, 2019 at 20:28

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