AbstractThe paper begins with an overview of various well-known accounts of the musical expression of emotion that have been proposed in recent years. But rather than proceeding to assess the merits and faults of these accounts the paper examines whether a radically new theory by Christopher Peacocke is superior to all of them. The theory, which certainly has a number of attractive features, is based on the idea of metaphorical-as perception. The notion of metaphorical-as perception needs to be elucidated and the examination of Peacocke’s theory takes place by playing it off against a rival theory that is based on a different kind of perception, imaginative-as perception. The paper argues that, as the basis of an account of the musical expression of emotion, imaginative-as perception has all the advantages and none of the apparent defects of metaphorical-as perception.