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  Other Searches:
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Subject Keyword

Use Subject Keyword to search for any word (in any order) or phrase found in one of the subject heading controlled vocabularies (a standard set of words or phrases that reflect the topic of an item, see below...) used at the Library of Congress. Use this type of search when the exact order of the words in the heading is NOT known.

Subject Keyword
retrieves materials by subject using controlled vocabulary headings.
Author/Creator Keyword screen

The most commonly used controlled vocabulary at the Library of Congress is the latest edition of the Library of Congress Subject Headings (LCSH). In addition to presenting a controlled list of subject headings in alphabetic order, LCSH shows the relationships among those headings and provides other valuable information, such as scope notes that clarify usage and Library of Congress classification numbers that are associated with a particular subject heading. Users are encouraged to consult this list as part of an effective search strategy.

Search limits are NOT available.
Boolean AND operator is automatic.

Basic Search Examples:

To find the Subject Heading . . . Enter the words . . .
Composers, Italian. or Composers--Italy-- Biography--Dictionaries--Italian. italian composers
African American art--19th century-- Exhibitions.  or  Art, African--Exhibitions. exhibitions african art
O'Neill, Eugene, 1888-1953. eugene oneill
Kirk, James T. (Fictitious character) Fiction. fiction james kirk
Sacramento-San Joaquin Estuary (Calif.) "san joaquin estuary"
Railroads--New England.  or 
Railroads--Freight--New England.
new england railroads

Search Tips:

  • Enter words or phrases in any order.
  • All words will be searched (including articles and conjunctions in all languages, such as and, or, not, the, a, la, das, etc.).
  • Enclose words in " " (quotation marks) to retrieve the exact phrase (e.g., "san joaquin estuary")
  • Use a ? (question mark) to replace multiple characters either inside or at the end of a search term (e.g., ecumen? will retrieve ecumenical, ecumenism, etc.).
  • Use a % (percent sign) to replace a single character, either inside or at the end of a search term (e.g., col%r will retrieve color, coler and colur, but not colour).
  • Search results are returned as a Headings List. Each row of the Headings List display lists a heading with the number of title hits matching that heading. Selecting the heading will display a Titles List for all titles matching that heading.

Alternative Search Options:

If you know the exact order of an author/creator (starting with the left-most word), you may find the Subject Browse search to be more effective.

Use the browser's [Back] button to resume searching.

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July 15, 2008