Gnomon Bibliographische Datenbank Instruction Manual

XI. Free Text Search

No description and selection of keywords for the textfield will ever be able to take into account all aspects of some titles. The free text search is therefore an important aid in searching for more specialised names and terms which cannot be found using the thesaurus.

In contrast to the very fast descriptor search the free text search, which has to search sequentially through all 240.000 titles, will take somewhat more time (approximately 1 to 2 minutes).


Free text search with the template.

The template for the - simplified - free text search offers just one field for the words looked for, and the options for search operators.

You reach the template for the free text search clicking on the »Freitextsuche«-Button ("free text search").


At first the template for the author search will be displayed; by further clicking on the »OPAC«-button ("online public access catalogue") you reach the template for the »Freitextsuche« (free text search):


In the field »Suchwörter« ("words looked for") you enter the words. Any word-search should have a full stop / period entered both to the right and to the left of the string; without a period, for example, a string with quotation marks would not be found.

The question mark (?) as a "joker" for any particular sign can be used in a query as often as you like.

If you enter more than one word, these words have to be divided by semicola, by blanks, or use of the »Enter«-key.

Using the operator »ODER« you extend your search; all documents will be found which contain at least one of the words searched for.

Using the operator »UND« you limit the search result; only those documents will be found, which contain all search words together.

By clicking on the »Starten«-Button you start the search. The documents found will be kept in the active search box.

Clicking on the [Bild] icon you reach the template again for a limiting or extending search. After the crossing off of irrelevant titles the corrected result can be adjusted using the [Bild] icon.


For example, in order to supplement a search result for the Iliad with all publications featuring the name Achilleus within the title, search for the series of letters .achill. (sample task no. 13). After the conclusion of the search you will find not only entries about the Homeric Achilleus, but also various titles, from Greek mythology to Achilles Statius, from Statius to Goethe and W. H. Auden, and even to »gender studies«. Not every title will be relevant for your work, but you may be certain that you have not overlooked anything, at least within the titles included in the database. This result of more than 500 titles may then be limited to those documents that are really important for your question at hand.

Free text search within a single field.

The template makes no difference between the various fields of the database. For the free text search within a single field - or within more fields, but not all - there is the option of a free text search within specified fields available.

You reach this option from the basic menu by selecting as »Rechercheart« ("search style") the option »Volltext« ("free text search") and confirm this with the »recherchieren«-button; or you select in the menu »Recherchieren« the option »Volltext«.

Make sure that within the dialog box for the search (»Recherchebox«) the option »wortorientiert« ("search for complete words, or parts of words" is activated. Select the direction of your search (new, limiting, or extending), and select the result box (A, B, or C).


You have to determine in which field to search (»Suchfeld«). The first unambiguous letters of a fieldname are enough to select the field: thus ti for Titel ("Title"), te for Textfeld ("text field"), sa for Sammelband ("collection of articles"), reihen for Reihentitel ("series title"), ze for Zeitschrift ("periodical"), verl for Verlag ("publisher"), ort for Ort ("place of publication"). The word searched for will then be shown, together with the field you have selected, in the window displaying the search task. You may delete any wrong input with the »Korr«-button.

You start the search with the »Enter«-key or with the »starten«-button. After completion of the search the first docment found will be displayed; the word (or term) you looked for is emphasised on screen with a yellow bar. After switching over to the display of results (»Ergebnisanzeige«) you may scroll through all the documents found.


Free text search with a filtered field.

The free text search with direct selection of fields will be your choice in most cases. The filtering of fields is an alternative. For example, search for the contents of volume 126 of the »Zeitschrift für Papyrologie und Epigraphik« (ZPE) (sample task no. 14).

Go to the menu for the free text search and enter as first search word »Papyrologie«:


Then you deactivate in the window for the field selection all fields with the icon [Bild]. After this you select the field »Zeitschrift« with a doubleclick. This single field will be marked then with a yellow hook:


After clicking on the »Enter«-button the first search task will be shown in the window displaying the search tasks:


[image008.gif] Now click on the »UND«-button and enter »126« as search term. In the window for the selection of fields you deactivate again all fields with the icon [Bild]. Now you select the field for »Band« ("volume") with a doubleclick. Click again on the »enter«-button to complete this query. You start the search with the »Enter«-key or with the »Start«-button:



The string search.

Searching for a string is different from searching for a word, or a part of a word.; the string search will find any combination of letters, even if they don't form a word; capital letters are treated different from small letters, if desired. You may search for any sort of characters, for punctuation marks and even blanks preceeding ofr following a string. "Umlaute" (vowel mutations) are treated as single characters: A is different from Ä.

If you activate the definition "A = a", the program will make no distinction between »Great« and »great«;


The second definition "A < > a" makes a distinction between small and capital letters. An example is the search for »the Great« (sample task no. 15).


Operatores, truncation marks, wildcards.

In the search box you find the buttons for the selection of operators. With these operatores you may link several words searched for. See also above, the remarks about the template search, p. **.

UND (AND): links words with limiting search conditions.

ODER (OR) links words with extending search conditions.

NICHT (NOT) denies a search conditions. A search task with the condition »NOT Athens« will find all documents that do not contain the word "Athens". With a query task like "Democracy AND NOT Athens" you will find, then, all titles which contain the word "Democracy", but not the word "Athens". [sample task no. 16].

With the buttons for brackets you bind together search terms, which themselves are search terms combined with operatores. Terms put in brackets may then be linked with similar combined terms. Thus the search for (Platon OR Aristoteles) AND Athens will find all documents, which contain either Platon or Aristoteles and, at the same time, Athens. [sample task no. 17]. And another, more longwinded example: search for all titles, which contain the words »Spätantike« OR »Later Roman Empire« OR »Antiquité tardive« OR »antiquità tarda« (sample task no. 18).


Search terms are shortened with a full stop / period. With a full stop / period you replace a varying number of letters at the beginng, at the end, or in the middle of a word searched for.

The question mark (?) may be used as joker sign; it replaces exactly one character.

Some examples:

Demokrat. finds "Demokratie", "Demokratien", "Demokrati­ sierung", "Demokratia", etc.
Democra. finds "Democracy", "démocratie", "democrazia", "democratic", etc.
Demo?ra. finds all these words. (sample task no. 19).
Demo.rat. finds in addition "Demostratos" und "de­ monstrativ".
.Demokrat. finds also "undemokratisch" and "antidemokratisch".

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Prof. Dr. Jürgen Malitz - April 2000