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Searching Title Authorities (Library of Congress Authorities Help)

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Searching Title Authority Headings

Select the search type Title Authority Headings on the main search screen to browse authority records for:
  • Uniform Titles that are not entered under a personal or group author/creator
  • Series Titles that are not entered under a personal or group author/creator

Title authorities are established by the Library of Congress (and cooperating partners) and used in LC Online Catalog records.

Most series titles and uniform titles are searchable as both Title Authority Headings and Subject Authority Headings. To ensure retrieval of all relevant records, however, it is recommended that the Title Authority Headings search type be your primary search type.

Title Authority Heading Search Examples:

To browse the title . . . Enter the words . . . Gardening by Design gardening by design The Song of Roland song of roland A New-York Historical Society Book new york historical society book Mother Goose mother goose

Search Tips:

  • Always omit initial articles (a, an, the, das, el, la, etc.) in any language.
  • Punctuation (e.g. semicolons, periods, hyphens, slashes, etc.) found at the end of words or phrases is ignored. However, you need to retain punctuation found in the middle of words and numbers (e.g., folk-lore and folklore display in different places in Headings Lists).
  • Searches are automatically truncated and retrieve title heading authority records that begin with the words or phrases entered. You do not need to use the question mark (?) for truncation.
  • If searching the full title does not produce satisfactory results, enter only the first few words of the title.
    • crito (for Crito; a Socratic dialogue or Crito; or, A dialogue on beauty )
    • dr jekyll (for Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde or Dr. Jekyll alias Mr. Hyde)
    • new directions in ed (for New directions in education)
    • what do you care what (for What do YOU care what other people think?)
  • Consider alternate forms of title words:
    • initials, acronyms, abbreviations (e.g., us or united states)
    • numbers (e.g., 10 or ten)
    • one word or two (e.g., healthcare or health care)
    • spelling variations (e.g., color or colour)
    • similar concepts (e.g., british or english)
    • word variations (e.g., email or e-mail)

How to View Authorities and References:

Your search results will be presented as a browsable Headings List of title headings in the LC Online Catalog, whether the headings have authority records associated with them or not.

Note: Headings in the LC Online Catalog that end with the legend "[from old catalog]" were assigned before the online cataloging era and may not be associated with a records in Library of Congress Authorities. In addition, the Headings List may display headings from in-process catalog records for which authority records will be made in the near future.

You will be placed at the point in the Headings List most closely matching your search words. To browse through the Headings List, select to view headings that precede your search words alphabetically or scroll down to view headings following your search words. To retrieve authority information, references, and/or notes for a heading, select the icon shown to the left of the heading.

Please consult the following Help Screens for more detailed information:

Use the browser's [Back] button to exit help and resume searching.
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December 4, 2015