Chopin’s Études represent something quite new in the tradition of writing studies for the development of piano technique.
Just as his predecessors in the genre, Chopin concentrates on a particular problem in each of his studies, but the extremely advanced technical skills needed to master these pieces becomes secondary to the musical satisfaction they give as concert pieces, invested as they are with the utmost creative power and poetry.
The first set (Op. 10) is dedicated to Franz Liszt, about whom Chopin reportedly said with regard to the études: “I wish I could steal from him the way he plays them.”
The final three studies, without Opus number, were composed as part of a series called "Méthode des méthodes de piano" compiled by Moscheles and Fétis.