Genre and form

Revision as of 14:47, 28 February 2019 by ErinBlake (talk | contribs) (Added notes on "Presentation copies")

Genre/form terms in catalog records describe what an item is (or contains), not what it is about. Genre corresponds roughly to the content of what is being described: for example, almanacs, depositions, plays, and poems. Form corresponds with formats and physical characteristics: for example, embroidered bindings, imposition errors, manicules, and sammelbands. This Hamnet record for two copies of a 1635 edition of Sternhold and Hopkins Whole booke of Psalmes includes the genre term Psalters and the form term Embroidered bindings (Binding). Genre/form terms are controlled by authorized forms.

Genre and form in library catalog records

Due to the limits of the card catalog, genre and form terms were not systematically recorded by early catalogers. Shelflist cards - usually 3" x 5" index cards - did not have much room anything besides title, author, and publication information, and maybe a few subject headings or free-text notes. Libraries often maintained separate card catalogs for books, manuscripts, and other materials, which decreased the need for additional genre access.

The advent of the MARC standard, however, allowed librarians to expand their item descriptions: catalogers could add as much descriptive information as needed to fully describe a book (or at least, they were constrained by computer processing power rather than the dimensions of the catalog card). The original MARC specification did not include a specific field for genre and/or form terms, but two were added during the 1980s: 655 (Index Term--Genre/Form) and 755 (Added Entry--Physical Characteristics). Due to some confusion over how these two fields were indexed, and how to differentiate which information went in which, the 755 field was officially made obsolete in 1995 in favor of the 655 field, which is still in use today.

Controlled vocabularies

Genre and form entries benefit especially from the use of controlled vocabularies, enabling librarians and scholars to to describe and find resources via a shared language. By using controlled vocabularies, a user can assume that when they search for "Embroidered bindings," they will get similar types of results no matter which library catalog they are searching in. Librarians can choose from a range of controlled vocabularies, many of which are specialized for particular fields, when cataloging their materials.


The Library of Congress Subject Headings (LCSH) is a controlled vocabulary set that was developed in 1898 (and has been regularly updated since) to be used broadly across many types of libraries. However, they are were originally meant for use only as subject headings, not genre terms; in other words, they describe what an item is about (dinosaurs, jewel heists), not what genre it belongs to (short stories, horror movies) or what form it takes (carousel books, calendars).

As libraries began to provide additional access to genre and form information, catalogers found attempted to find work-arounds to use LCSH headings as genre/form terms. Some added applicable subject headings to the 650 field (for subjects), even though that implied that an item was about a topic rather than an example of a topic (such as Haunted house films). Others added subject headings to the 655 field as genre/form terms, although this practice was not officially implemented until 2002. Subfield ‡v was added to the MARC standard in 1995 to adapt subject heading fields for genre and form access as well. The ‡v indicates a genre/form term: "Pictorial works" indicates that images are a central part of an item, and "Early works to 1800" indicates that the item is a work printed or issued before 1800. Even though the items being described are not necessarily about pictures or early modern printing, they are examples of those things. For instance:

600 10 ‡a Shakespeare, William, ‡d 1564-1616

tells a user that an item is about William Shakespeare, but nothing more. In comparison,

600 10 ‡a Shakespeare, William, ‡d 1564-1616 ‡v Calendars

tells the user that the item is about Shakespeare, and it is in the form of a calendar. A popular term in the $v subdivision is Specimens, which can be used to adapt most noun-based subject headings into genre or form headings (i.e. 650 _0 ‡a Swords ‡v Specimens or 650 _0 ‡a Crows ‡v Specimens).


Around 2010, the Library of Congress began to separate out the genre terms from LCSH, and establish them as a separate list, Library of Congress Genre and Form Terms (LCGFT). LCGFT headings are a controlled vocabulary specifically meant to be used in the 655 field as genre/form terms. Some headings, such as Ten-minute plays, are established in both LCSH and LCGFT - an item can be either about ten-minute plays, or an example of a ten-minute play (or both, for that matter).

RBMS vocabularies

As the development and implementation of the MARC standard allowed catalogers to record more information than ever, specialized library communities began to brainstorm how to take advantage of the opportunities offered by the new standard. A 1979 IRLA report, "Proposals for Establishing Standards for the Cataloguing of Rare Books and Specialized Research Materials in Machine-readable Form," proposed the creation of MARC fields for literary genre headings and physical characteristic terms (later merged into a single field - see above), and included a draft thesaurus of genre terms. This thesaurus was finalized and published as Genre Terms: A Thesaurus for Use in Rare Book and Special Collections Cataloguing in 1983. Throughout the next decade, additional thesauri for physical and provenance terms were developed and released as well. [1]

Today, RBMS maintains six thesauri of genre and form terms; all are openly available on the RBMS website, and planning is currently in process to make them available as linked data.

Binding Terms
Genre Terms
Paper Terms
Printing & Publishing Evidence
Provenance Evidence
Type Evidence

Since the RBMS controlled vocabularies were developed specifically to meet the needs of the rare book community, they were the preferred vocabulary for Folger catalogers until 2016, when the Cataloging & Metadata Department made the decision to prefer AAT terms. However, some RBMS terms are still used when they best describe a concept, or when AAT does not have an equivalent term.


[background information to come]

Folger catalogers use TGM II (GMGPC) to provide genre/form access when cataloging graphic materials.

Genre and form use at the Folger

Searching genre/form terms in Hamnet

Hamnet has several built-in ways to search for items by their genre and form.

  • On the Basic Search tab, select "Subject & Form/Genre Browse" if you know an exact controlled vocabulary term you want to search, or select "Form/Genre (Keyword Phrase)" if you aren't sure what the controlled term is.
Basic Search options.JPG
  • On the Advanced Search tab, select "Form/Genre" from the drop-down menus next to any of the three search boxes. You can search by form/genre alone, or combine it with other searches - for instance, to search for promptbooks marked by Edwin Booth.
Advanced Search drop-down.jpg
  • You can also select the "Expert Search" option from the Basic Search tab, and search using Boolean operators and index codes. Use the code KGNR to search for form/genre terms and subjects.
Expert search Booth.JPG

Cataloging policy

List of common genre and form terms in Hamnet

Ambox notice.png This article contains text copied from legacy files and may or may not reflect current information.
  • This list of genre and form terms, and Folger policy for applying them, is currently under review and revision. In the meantime, however, it remains helpful as a starting point for searching in Hamnet. Most of the terms on the list were meant to be used consistently for all Vault materials. Other terms were selectively applied for unusual or outstanding examples of a feature (e.g. Fan style bindings for 267- 907.1q)
  • Not all RBMS terms had scope notes at the time of this table's initial creation; consequently, some scope notes are taken from other thesauri with the same terms (or variant terms to represent the same concept). The source of each scope note is indicated.
Term Term source Scope note Scope source Folger practice Material
Academic dissertations ǂ2 rbgenr Discourses advancing an original point of view as a result of research, especially as a requirement for an academic degree. AAT (Theses)
Account books ǂ2 rbgenr Books in which financial accounts are kept. AAT UF Estate accounts, if unbound, and waste books.
Accounts ǂ2 aat Documents in which monies or goods received and paid or given out are recorded in order to permit periodic totaling. AAT
Acting editions ǂ2 rbgenr Use for plays with extensive printed production information. RBMS Apply when an edition explicitly identifies itself as the text of the play as it was performed, usually using words like "as it is acted at the Theatre-Royal, Covent-Garden" or "Printed from the promptbook. They will often have cast lists, but that is not a necessary criterion.
Addresses ǂ2 rbgenr Documents containing the text of any public address or talk. AAT (Speeches)
Advertisements ǂ2 rbgenr Public notices or paid announcements, especially those in print. AAT
Album amicorum use Libri amicorum
Allegorical drawings ǂ2 gmgpc Use for drawings representing truths or generalizations about human existence by means of symbolic images; often of classical derivation.
Allegorical paintings ǂ2 gmgpc Use for paintings representing truths or generalizations about human existence by means of symbolic images; often of classical derivation.
Allegorical photographs ǂ2 gmgpc Use for photographs representing truths or generalizations about human existence by means of symbolic images; often of classical derivation.
Allegorical prints ǂ2 gmgpc Use for prints representing truths or generalizations about human existence by means of symbolic images; often of classical derivation.
Almanacs ǂ2 rbgenr Use for works containing a calendar of days, weeks, and months, together with information such as astronomical data, various statistics, etc. Do not use for modern factual compendia such as the World Almanac. RBMS
Alphabets of arms use Armorials
Anagrams use Games
Annotations (Provenance) ǂ2 rbprov Use for remarks, notes, highlighting or commentary (generally in manuscript) on the text or on the history or provenance of the material. RBMS Folger practice: use for manuscript annotations by someone other than a scribe or transcriber
Anthologies ǂ2 rbgenr Collections of choice extracts, from the writings of one author, or various authors, and usually having a common characteristic such as subject matter or literary form. AAT Use for books in which the owner has copied or written passages of interest or importance that are not organized under specific headings or in alphabetical order. Use Commonplace books for books in which the extracts are organized under specific headings or in alphabetical order.
Aphorisms ǂ2 aat Short, pithy statements of principle or precepts, often of known authorship; distinguished from Proverbs, which are statements repeated colloquially and which often embody the folk wisdom of a group or nation. AAT UF Aphorisms and apothegms.
Aphorisms and apothegms use Aphorisms
Armorials ǂ2 rbgenr Use for books containing depictions of coats of arms. RBMS UF Alphabets of arms; Heraldic manuscripts; Ordinaries of arms.
Astronomical charts ǂ2 aat Refers to maps of the heavens, including the constitution, relative positions, and motions of the heavenly bodies, which are all the bodies in the material universe outside of the Earth, as well as of the Earth itself relative to them. The earliest examples were often decorated with fantastic figures depicting the constellations and recognizable groupings of bright stars, and were primarily used as aids to navigation. AAT Do not confuse with astrological charts; use Horoscopes instead.
Auction catalogs ǂ2 rbgenr A listing of items, including works of art, manuscripts, books, or other items, that are for sale by auction. AAT
Autograph albums use Libri amicorum
Autographs ǂ2 rbgenr Persons' names written in their own hand. AAT (Signatures (names)) Use only for collections of autographs and single, clipped autographs. UF Signatures
Ballads use Songs or Poems, as appropriate
Bequests ǂ2 aat Gifts of personal property by will. UF Legacies AAT
Blank forms ǂ2 rbgenr Forms, which are formulary documents that arrange particular information in a prescribed sequence and format, that are created with blank spaces, lines, boxes, data entry fields, or other means to prompt users of the form to fill in the particular information. Blank forms may be handwritten, printed, typed, or online. When indexing, this term may be used for such forms, whether or not they have been filled in by a user of the form.. AAT
Book auction catalogs use Auction catalogs
Book illustrations ǂ2 gmgpc Illustrations in books or pamphlets, whether photographs, photomechanical prints, or other media; whether still part of or detached from the volume. Also, drawings, photographs, prints, and other pictures made to be reproduced as illustrations, whether or not they were ever published. LC Use for graphic materials only.
Bookplates ǂ2 gmgpc Book owners' identification labels; usually intended for pasting inside a book. LC Use when the item being cataloged is a bookplate. For volumes containing bookplates, use an 852 ǂz note.
Booksellers' advertisements ǂ2 rbgenr Use this term rather than "Publishers' advertisements" for examples appearing before the roles of bookseller and publisher were clearly differentiated. RBMS
Booksellers' catalogs ǂ2 rbgenr Use this term rather than "Publishers' catalogs" for examples appearing before the roles of bookseller and publisher were clearly differentiated. RBMS
Borders (Type evidence) ǂ2 rbtyp Ornamental areas of distinct pattern, material, color, or shape around the edge or boundary of something. With regard specifically to tapestries, refers to the areas around the central field outside the inner guard and within the guard that edges the outer sides of the tapestry. For the narrow surfaces showing the 'thickness' or smallest dimension of thin, flat objects, as distinguished from the broad surfaces, see "edges (object components)." AAT
Botanical illustrations ǂ2 gmgpc Illustrations of plants or plant life. UF Botanical drawings. TGM
Bowdlerized books use Expurgated editions
Cablegrams use Telegrams
Calendars ǂ2 rbgenr Use for tabular registers of days, not for lists of manuscripts or documents; subdivide by date. RBMS Subdivide by century of publication only.
Calf bindings (Binding) ǂ2 rbbin Use also Goatskin bindings, Pigskin bindings, etc. Use for decorative bindings only, i.e. exhibition-worthy bindings. B
Calligraphy ǂ2 gmgpc Works composed primarily of beautiful, elegant letters or flourishes that are typically created by hand with a pen, either in unjoined characters or in cursive writing. May also refer to similar works created by computer or another means. AAT
Caricatures ǂ2 rbgenr Use for verbal or visual works which portray in a critical or facetious way a real individual or group, or a figure representing a social, political, ethnic, or racial type. The effect is usually achieved through distortion or exaggeration of some characteristic or characteristics. RBMS
Cartularies ǂ2 aat Registers, usually in volume form, of copies of charters, title deeds, and other documents of significance belonging to a person, family, or institution. AAT
Cast lists ǂ2 rbgenr Use for lists associating specific performers with their parts. RBMS
Catechisms ǂ2 rbgenr Manuals or guides for instructing through a series of questions and answers, especially for religious instruction. RBMS
Censored works ǂ2 rbgenr Use for works that have been altered, prohibited, or suppressed because of allegedly objectionable content. RBMS
Certificates ǂ2 rbgenr Use for documents containing certified statements of ownership, membership, fulfilled requirements, legal status, etc. AAT scope note: Documents giving authoritative recognition of a fact, qualification, or promise. UF: Diplomas RBMS/AAT
Chapbooks ǂ2 rbgenr Use for small, inexpensively printed books or pamphlets sold primarily by traveling peddlers beginning in the 17th century. Do not use for 20th century items which represent themselves as chapbooks. RBMS
Charades use Games
Charters ǂ2 rbgenr Documents, usually sealed, granting specific rights, setting forth aims and principles of a newly established entity, and often embodying formal agreements and authorizing special privileges or exemptions. AAT
Checks (bank checks) ǂ2 aat Written orders drawn on a bank or the Treasury of the United States to pay on demand a specified sum of money to a named person, to his order, or to bearer, out of money on deposit to the credit of the writer; must be endorsed to be transferred. AAT UF any bank in any country, plus the U.S. Treasury
Chronicles ǂ2 rbgenr Use for histories in which events are described in chronological order. These differ from annals in being more connected and full. RBMS
Ciphers ǂ2 rbgenr Use for texts, the meaning of which is concealed by substitution or transposition of letters or numbers. RBMS
Cityscapes ǂ2 gmgpc General or broad views of cities and towns or sections of them. Usually made from an elevated or distant vantage point, such as a view from a roof or a view of a skyline. TGM
Clasps (Binding) ǂ2 rbbin Fasteners made of two or more parts, often of metal, and consisting of separate interlocking hooking and catching elements that hold together two or more objects or complimentary parts of the same object. AAT Use whenever there is evidence of original clasps, even if now missing. B M
Clippings ǂ2 rbgenr Use for Illustrations, pages, articles, or columns of text removed from books, newspapers, periodicals, or other publications. TGM
Coats of arms ǂ2 gmgpc Heraldic bearings, usually depicted on an escutcheon often with a crest, motto, or other adjuncts. TGM For books, only make for extraordinary exemplars, such as 225- 452f B M
Coats of arms, books of use Armorials
Coins ǂ2 gmgpc Pieces of metal stamped by government authority for use as money. AAT (Coins (money)) Use for actual coins; for depictions of coins, use 650 0 Coins, ǂe depicted.
Commonplace books ǂ2 rbgenr Use for personal notebooks in which the owner has copied passages of interest or written his or her own compositions; use also for printed versions of such works. RBMS Use only for such books organized alphabetically or thematically under specific headings. For similar books without headings, use Anthologies; Poetical miscellanies; Memorandums
Composition errors (Printing) ǂ2 rbpri Use for dittography, omissions of text, misspelling, and any other compositorial errors. RBMS B
Concealed editions (Publishing) ǂ2 rbpub Use for closely similar editions, printed from substantially different settings of type, not distinguished as such by the printer and/or publisher RBMS B
Concordances ǂ2 rbgenr Includes indexes to the location of words or phrases in a text and finding aids, in two columns, establishing the relationship between the past and present reference numbers of individual items. AAT
Contracts ǂ2 rbgenr Documents, enforceable by law, embodying agreements between two or more competent parties to do or not to do something, and specifying the terms and conditions of the agreement. AAT
Cookbooks ǂ2 rbgenr Use for books of cooking directions and recipes. UF Receipt books
Copy books (Penmanship) ǂ2 rbgenr Use for penmanship or calligraphy manuals which include instructional text and examples as well as blank areas designed for a pupil's practice writing. For works which do not contain such blank areas for practice, use Penmanship manuals. RBMS
Corantos ǂ2 rbgenr Use for single-leaf forerunners of newspapers. For similar items consisting of more than one leaf, use Newsbooks RBMS
Costume design drawings ǂ2 gmgpc Graphic delineations made for the design and production (or documentation of design and production) of costumes for theatrical and other performing arts productions and for special events, such as costume balls or Halloween. TGM
Counterproofs ǂ2 gmgpc In printmaking, impressions taken from a print or drawing by passing it through a press against a sheet of damp paper. The image appears in reverse. TGM
Court rolls use Judicial records
Courtesy books ǂ2 rbgenr Use for books outlining the education, conduct, duties, and training of noble or royal persons, or persons serving at court. RBMS B
Dates (Provenance) ǂ2 rbprov Use for evidence dating the acquisition or period of ownership. RBMS B
Debates use Addresses
Decorated papers (Binding) ǂ2 rbbin Use for the occurrence of such papers as any part of bindings, cases, endpapers, or doublures. RBMS B
Decorations ǂ2 gmgpc Images that ornament a text or picture but do not relate specifically to its meaning. TGM
Decretals ǂ2 aat Letters of the pope determining some point or question in ecclesiastical law and possessing the force of law within the Roman Catholic Church. AAT
Deeds ǂ2 rbgenr Documents, usually executed under seal, containing a conveyance, especially of real estate. AAT Consult Curator of Manuscripts when coming across more specific types of deeds.
Depositions ǂ2 aat Testimonies of witnesses, under oath or affirmation, before a person empowered to administer oaths. AAT
Designs and ornaments use Decorations
Devotional literature ǂ2 rbgenr Religious texts that explore the values, ideas, and behaviors that a religion is seeking to advance, for the purpose of leading the individual, through devotion, closer to an ultimate state of grace or perfection. AAT B
Dialogues ǂ2 rbgenr Written compositions in which two or more characters are represented as conversing. AAT
Diaries ǂ2 rbgenr Refers to books containing the daily, personal accounts of the writer's own experiences, attitudes, and observations. AAT
Dictionaries ǂ2 rbgenr Reference sources containing alphabetical lists of words with information given for each word; generally including meanings, pronunciation, etymology, and often usage guidance. AAT
Diplomas use Certificates
Documentary films ǂ2 lcgft Use for films and programs which depict actual persons and/or events. Exclude frank historical re-creations, but do not attempt to judge the "truth" of the depiction in a film purporting to be factual or documentary in character. UF Factual films
Documentary television programs ǂ2 lcgft
Drafts (negotiable instruments) ǂ2 aat Written orders drawn by one party ordering a second party to pay a specified sum of money to a third party (who may be the first party); usually restricted to domestic transactions. For similar orders to pay used for foreign transactions, prefer "bills of exchange." AAT
Dramatic music ǂ2 lcgft Music written for the stage. Use more specific terms (e.g. Incidental music, Operas) whenever possible
Drawings ǂ2 gmgpc AAT scope: Visual works produced by drawing, which is the application of lines on a surface, often paper, by using a pencil, pen, chalk, or some other tracing instrument to focus on the delineation of form rather than the application of color. This term is often defined broadly to refer to computer-generated images as well. TGM scope: Narrower terms include both physical media and genre categories but are limited to those which use drawing in the sense of a specific medium rather than in the everyday sense of graphic representation. AAT/TGM When applicable, prefer the following narrower/related terms: Set design drawings; Watercolors
Educational films ǂ2 lcgft This heading is used as a genre/form heading for films that are intended to impart knowledge and information, including those for classroom viewing. Films that use a structured format to teach or train the audience are entered under Instructional films. LC Use Educational films also for instructional films
Educational television programs ǂ2 lcgft
Emblem books ǂ2 rbgenr Use for collections of emblems, i.e., mottoes or epigrams accompanied by a verse and sometimes a symbolic illustration, based upon a poetic conceit or moral statement, particularly popular in the 16th and 17th centuries. RBMS
Emblems (allegorical pictures) ǂ2 aat Allegorical pictures, often inscribed with mottoes, common especially in the 16th and 17th centuries. Distinct from "emblems (symbols)," which are simpler symbolic objects or representations of an object. AAT
Embroidered bindings ǂ2 rbbin UF Needlework bindings RBMS
Ephemerides ǂ2 rbgenr Use for works giving the computed positions of celestial bodies for each day or other regular interval; used by navigators and astronomers. RBMS B
Epigrams ǂ2 rbgenr Use for short satiric poems or any similar pointed sayings. RBMS
Epitaphs ǂ2 rbgenr Use for inscriptions copied from sepulchral monuments in the memory of those buried in the tomb or grave. (Adapted from AAT). Also use for satirical epitaphs found in poetical miscellanies.
Erotica ǂ2 rbgenr Use for literary or artistic works focused on sexual love or desire. RBMS B
Estate accounts use Account books, if bound; Accounts, if unbound
Expurgated copies (Provenance) ǂ2 rbprov Use for copies of a work from which objectionable parts have been defaced, obliterated, or removed, usually on moral grounds. RBMS This term is copy-specific and applies only to individual copies.
Expurgated editions ǂ2 rbgenr Use for editions or versions of works from which objectionable parts in the original text -- whether or not that text has been published -- have been deleted, usually on moral grounds. UF Bowdlerized books; Expurgated books; Expurgated works. RBMS
Extra-illustrated copies (Provenance) ǂ2 rbprov Use only when enough material was added to necessitate rebinding. Otherwise, use Insertions (Provenance)
Factual films use Documentary films
False imprints ǂ2 rbgenr An imaginary imprint used for the purpose of evading legal and other restrictions, to mask piracies, to protect anonymity of the author, etc. AAT (Fictitious imprints (also encompassing False imprints)) Decision has not been made whether to use the rbgenr term Fictitious imprints or False imprints for imaginary place and/or publisher names and/or dates.
Family histories ǂ2 rbgenr Use for narrative family histories. For family trees and other genealogical listings of family members, use Genealogies. RBMS
Family papers ǂ2 aat Group of the personal papers of several and various members of a single family; usually of parents and their children, but sometimes including papers of spouses and their families as well. AAT
Feature films ǂ2 lcgft Here are entered individual full-length films with a running time of 40 minutes or more. LC
Festival books ǂ2 rbgenr Use for accounts of festivals, parades, ceremonial entries, and the like. RBMS B
Film adaptations ǂ2 lcgft Use for films based on any written literature
Film scripts ǂ2 rbgenr Written forms of stories prepared for motion picture productions, including description of characters, details of scenes and settings, dialogue, and stage directions. AAT (Screenplay)
Filmed performances ǂ2 lcgft Here are entered films that document a performance, event, or concert of dance, music, opera, operetta, theatrical stage productions, magic, circus, stand-up comedy, burlesque, or other vaudeville or variety stage acts. etc. LC Also apply the topical or genre heading for the specific performance, concert or event, e.g., Rock concerts.
Financial records ǂ2 aat Documents pertaining to money matters. AAT
Fists ǂ2 rbprov Use for previous owners' indications drawing attention to text. UF: Index fingers, Note signs, Pointing hands, Manicules (local UF); BT Annotations RBMS
Fore-edge paintings ǂ2 aat Paintings done on the fore edge of a book, either with the edge solid so that the resulting image is visible when the book is closed, or, in the more usual sense of the term, with the edges fanned out so that the image is visible only when the book is open. AAT B
Forgeries use Literary hoaxes
Frontispieces ǂ2 gmgpc Illustrations placed next to the title page. TGM Use when cataloging individual frontispieces in the art collection.
Games ǂ2 rbgenr Use for materials designed for play, usually according to prescribed rules. RBMS UF Anagrams, Charades, Puzzles, Riddles
Genealogical notes (Provenance) ǂ2 rbprov B
Genealogies ǂ2 rbgenr Use for family trees and other listings of family members. For narrative histories, use Family histories. RBMS UF Pedigrees
Gift books ǂ2 rbgenr Use for illustrated literary miscellanies, popular in the 19th century, intended to be given as gifts and often published annually. RBMS B
Greeting cards ǂ2 gmgpc Cards sent or given on special occasions; usually bearing messages of good will. TGM
Heraldic devices use Coats of arms
Heraldic manuscripts use Armorials
Herbals ǂ2 rbgenr Books containing names and descriptions of herbs, or of plants in general. AAT B
Horoscopes ǂ2 lcgft Horoscope is a chart or diagram representing the positions of the planets, other celestial bodies and sensitive angles at the time of any event, such as a person's birth; other common names include astrological chart. LC
Housebooks ǂ2 aat Documents in which are recorded household expenditures such as for food, utilities, and domestic help, maintained in a journal or other book; also includes classed or chronological files of the bills and receipts for household goods and services AAT
Household accounts use Housebooks
Human hair ǂ2 aat Use for locks of hair, single strands of hair, and hair incorporated into jewelery. Do not use for wigs in the costume collection.
Humorous pictures ǂ2 gmgpc Images intended to be funny. UF Comic pictures. TGM UF Humorous sketches.
Illuminations ǂ2 gmgpc Book leaves or single sheets of text embellished with hand-drawn ornamental letters, scrolls, paintings, and other designs; usually gold and color; may be decorations or illustrations. TGM Illuminated letters, for very early books B
Illustrated works ǂ2 rbgenr Use for works which are 30% or more illustrative matter, or for works whose illustrations are particularly significant. Do not use for armorials. B M
Imposition errors (Printing) ǂ2 rbpri B
Imprimaturs use Printing privileges (Publishing)
Incidental music ǂ2 lcgft Music played during a performance of a spoken drama, which is of secondary importance to the speech (though it may still have dramatic significance) and thus the term does not refer to the operetta, musical, Singspiel, or masque. It embraces both the music 'outside' the drama (e.g., overtures before the play or interludes between acts) as well as the music performed as part of the action (e.g., fanfares, songs, dances, marches, and mood music) whether on or off the stage.
Inquisitiones post mortem ǂ2 rbgenr Use for official documents concerning the nature, extent, and value of a deceased landholder's possessions. RBMS
Insertions (Provenance) ǂ2 rbprov Use for any kind of insertion that might allow identification of the provenance, e.g., autograph letter, news clipping, photograph, etc. RBMS Use for insertions with intrinsic interest (e.g., flyers, pictures, flowers, newspaper clippings), whether there is just one or several. Do not use for insertions without intrinsic interest, such as a plain strip of paper used as a bookmark, unless there's firm evidence of specific former owner placement (for example, if it's pinned). For numerous insertions requiring rebinding, use Extra-illustrated copies (Provenance).
Interleaved books (Binding) ǂ2 rbbin Use for books bound with blank leaves systematically inserted between the original leaves, whether by the publisher or owner, to facilitate user-added content. RBMS Not to be used for tissues bound in to protect illustrations.
Interleaved copies (Provenance) use Interleaved books (Binding)
Interludes ǂ2 lcgft Here are entered collections of dramatic interludes. Musical interludes are entered under Interludes (Music). LC Use for dramatic or mimic representations, usually of a light or humorous character, such as was commonly introduced between the acts of the long mystery-plays or moralities, or exhibited as part of an elaborate entertainment
Instruction books use Textbooks
Instructional films use Educational films
Intaglio prints ǂ2 gmgpc Prints made using the process of intaglio printing. AAT B
Inventories ǂ2 aat Detailed lists of things in one's view or possession, as of all goods and materials on hand, or detailed lists of all items in a given category. For documentation of examination conducted to achieve a comprehensive view, use Surveys. AAT
Invitations ǂ2 rbgenr Use for printed or handwritten requests for one's presence at an event. RBMS
Invoices ǂ2 aat Documents showing items supplied, together with the prices charged for each; also, itemized bills or accounts. AAT
Journals (accounts) ǂ2 aat Use for books containing accounts of an individual's or organization's occurrences or transactions, including records of financial transactions. Use "diaries" when referring to personal accounts of the writer's experiences, attitudes, or observations. AAT
Judicial records ǂ2 aat Records of a tribunal established for the administration of justice. UF Court rolls. AAT
Lampoons use Satires
Landscapes (Representations) ǂ2 gmgpc General or broad views of natural scenery, including inland bodies of water; may also include figures or man-made objects, but these are of secondary importance to the composition. Usually made from an elevated or distant vantage point, such as a view from a hill; not ground level close-up view of, for example, a tree. TGM
Law reports, digests, etc. use Legal documents
Leases ǂ2 aat Contracts by which one conveys land or other property for a specified time usually for compensation or rent. AAT Also use BT Deeds.
Lecture notes ǂ2 rbgenr Use for notes made with reference to a lecture, both those from which the lecturer speaks, and those taken by people in attendance. AAT
Lectures use Addresses
Legacies use Bequests
Legal documents ǂ2 aat Documents having legal relevance in general. For documents that give expression to a legal act or agreement for the purpose of creating, securing, modifying, or terminating a right, or for the purpose of furnishing evidence of a right, use "legal instruments." AAT UF Legal notebooks; Law reports, digests, etc.
Legal formularies ǂ2 rbgenr Use for collections of specimens of legal documents. UF Legal notebooks.
Legal instruments ǂ2 aat Use for documents that give expression to a legal act or agreement, for the purpose of creating, securing, modifying, or terminating a right, or for the purpose of furnishing evidence of a right. For documents having legal relevance in general, use Legal documents.
Legal notebooks use Legal documents or Legal formularies, depending on content
Legends use Myths and legends
Legislative proceedings ǂ2 rbgenr
Letter books ǂ2 aat Books of blank or lined paper on which letters to be sent have been written; also copies of letters, originally on loose sheets, bound together, usually in chronological order. AAT
Letters ǂ2 rbgenr Use for pieces of correspondence that are somewhat more formal than memoranda or notes, usually on paper and delivered. AAT (Letters (correspondence))
Letters of advice ǂ2 aat Conduct of life letters written by parents or grandparents (sometimes cribbed from printed sources), meant to be kept and passed on, specifically in the form of a letter. Add LC subject term for Conduct of life; also add genre term for Letters. M
Letters patent ǂ2 aat Written communications, usually signed and sealed from a government or sovereign of a nation, conferring upon a designated person a grant (as a right, title, status, property, authority, privilege, monopoly, franchise, immunity, or exemption) that could not otherwise be enjoyed. AAT
Library catalogs ǂ2 rbgenr Use for lists of books or other materials held in public or private libraries
Libretti ǂ2 rbgenr Books or booklets containing the text or words of an opera or similar extended musical composition. AAT (Librettos) Use for printed or manuscript books giving the literary text, both sung and spoken, of an opera (or other musical work).
Libri amicorum ǂ2 rbgenr Books, loose-leaf binders, or other volumes containing blank leaves, on which persons have written sentiments, quotations, or signatures. UF Album amicorum, Autograph albums AAT (Autograph albums)
Literary hoaxes ǂ2 rbgenr Valued objects or documents that are made or altered with intent to deceive; may range in falsehood from counterfeiting of whole works to altering of signatures or other deliberate misrepresentations. Distinguished from Copies (derivative objects) by the intention of deception. UF Forgeries AAT (Forgeries (derivative objects))
Loyalty oaths ǂ2 aat Oaths, usually mandatory, affirming the loyalty of the takers, such as to a government, ruler, constitution, or set of principles. AAT
Made-for-TV movies ǂlcgft Use for feature-length films made exclusively for television, although some are released theatrically or made available on videocassette.
Magazine illustrations use Periodical illustrations
Manorial records ǂ2 aat Records having to do with the history and transactions of a manor house and its estate. AAT
Manuscript waste (Binding) ǂ2 rbbin Use for the presence of manuscript waste paper in bindings
Manuscripts ǂ2 aat Use especially for handwritten documents; may also be used to distinguish certain documents from published or otherwise printed documents, as in the cases of typed personal letters or a typescript from which printed versions are made. AAT Use for all manuscripts in English. Further subdivide by physical format if applicable (e.g., Facsimiles).
Manuscripts, [language] ǂlcgft Use for all non-English manuscripts
Manuscripts for publication ǂ2 aat Use for manuscripts used as copy-text by typesetters, etc.
Manuscripts from print ǂ2 local Use for manuscripts copied directly from printed texts
Maps ǂ2 rbgenr Graphic delineations at a set scale, of all or part of the earth or another celestial sphere indicating the relative position of selected artificial and natural features. TGM Use for resources that are entirely, or substantially, composed of maps. Subdivide by location depicted in the maps, not by place of production/publication
Masques ǂ2 rbgenr Short allegorical dramatic entertainments performed by masked performers, popular in the 16th and 17th centuries. AAT
Masques with music use Masques also use Dramatic music? Needs discussion
Maxims ǂ2 rbgenr Rules or principles of conduct, morality or prudence, expressed in sententious form. It is often used specifically for precepts of morality or prudence occurring in Old English verse, or for self-evident propositions assumed as a premise in mathematical or dialectical reasoning. The meaning of this term may overlap somewhat with Aphorisms AAT
Medical formularies ǂ2 rbgenr Use for works not having the contemporary status of a standard. RBMS Use for works formulating the ingredients and amounts to be used in medical preparations. UF Receipt books.
Memorandums ǂ2 aat Documents recording information used for internal communication. AAT Use for early modern manuscripts which consist of simple notes of something to be remembered, or a record (for future reference) of something that has been done, without the formulas and signature characteristic of a letter, and conventionally bearing the heading 'Memorandum' ('It is to be remembered') and often the writer's name (OED).
Menus ǂ2 rbgenr Lists of dishes to be served or available for meals. AAT
Military manuals ǂ2 rbgenr Use for manuals on military or naval instruction, training, or operations
Military orders ǂ2 rbgenr Use for commands issued by a military superior. Note: Use only if it is a directive issued from a higher authority to a lower one. RBMS
Miniature books (Printing) ǂ2 rbpri Use for volumes 10 cm or less in height RBMS B
Miniatures (Illuminations) ǂ2 gmgpc Pictures in an illuminated manuscript; distinct from the initials and borders. For non-manuscripts, use Miniatures (Paintings) TGM
Miniatures (Paintings) ǂ2 gmgpc Paintings on a very small scale (usually five inches or less), especially the portraits on vellum or ivory popular in England and America from the Renaissance into the 1800s. For miniatures in manuscripts, use Miniatures (Illuminations) TGM
Minutes ǂ2 aat Records of what was said and done at meetings or conferences. AAT
Miscellanies use Anthologies
Money orders ǂ2 aat Credit instruments ordering the payment of a specified amount of money, usually issued and payable at a bank or post office. AAT
Morality plays ǂ2 rbgenr Use for allegorical plays of the type which offer discourses in praise of morality between actors representing characters such as Charity, Faith, Death, etc. RBMS
Musical notation ǂ2 gmgpc Use for a system of expressing musical sounds through the use of written symbols. Use only when cataloging a resource other than on the scores format.
Musical works ǂ2 rbgenr Use for written compositions in musical notation not covered by a more specific genre
Mystery plays ǂ2 rbgenr Use for medieval religious plays based on scriptural incidents. RBMS
Myths and legends ǂ2 rbgenr Stories handed down by tradition from earlier times, usually concerned with a real person, place, or event, and popularly regarded as historical although not entirely verifiable. AAT (Legends (folk tales)) UF Legends.
Neo-Latin plays use Plays
Neo-Latin poems ǂ2 rbgenr Use for poems written in Latin since ca. 1300. RBMS
Newsbooks ǂ2 rbgenr Use for forerunners of newspapers, consisting of more than one leaf, published in the 16th and 17th centuries. For similar items consisting of one leaf, use Corantos RBMS
Newsletters ǂ2 rbgenr In the 16th and 17th centuries, manuscript reports produced for special subscribers and issued irregularly or weekly; from the 20th century to the present, periodic reports on the activities of a business or organization. AAT
Notebooks ǂ2 rbgenr Use for books in which notes of memorandums are recorded, or notes taken during a class, lecture, or meeting.
Obituaries ǂ2 rbgenr Published notices of a death, usually with a brief biography of the deceased. AAT
Ordinaries of arms use Armorials
Operas ǂ2 rbgenr Here are entered musical compositions. General works about opera are entered under the heading Opera. LC Use for dramas set to music to be sung with instrumental accompaniment by singers usually in costume. Defintion: A dramatic musical work in which singing forms an essential part, chiefly consisting of recitatives, arias, and choruses, with orchestral accompaniment; a performance of such a work; a libretto or musical score for such a work.
Oratorios ǂlcgft Here are entered musical compositions. Works about the oratorio are entered under the heading Oratorio. LC Use for a musical settings of a religious libretti for solo singers, chorus, and orchestra, in dramatic form but usually performed without scenery or costumes in concert-hall-or church. Defintion: A large-scale, usually narrative musical work for orchestra and voices, typically on a sacred theme and performed with little or no costume, scenery, or action. Also: this as a musical genre. Formerly also (U.S.): a concert of sacred music of any sort (obs.).
Overtures ǂlcgft Here are entered overtures for orchestra. Overtures for other mediums of performance are entered under this heading followed by the medium, e.g. Overtures (Chamber orchestra). Works about the overture are entered under the heading Overture. LC Use for instrumental music composed as an introduction to an opera, oratorio, ballet, or other dramatic work, or intended for independent concert performance. Defintion: Music. An orchestral piece of varying form and dimensions, forming the opening or introduction to an opera, oratorio, or other extended composition, and often containing themes from the body of the work or otherwise indicating the character of it. Also: a similar orchestral piece, usually of descriptive or programmatic character, intended for independent performance; = concert overture n. at CONCERT n. Compounds 2.
Paintings ǂ2 gmgpc Use for all paintings except miniatures and watercolors, q.v.
Pamphlets ǂ2 aat Independent publications consisting of a few leaves of printed matter folded or fastened together but not bound, often with no cover or a paper cover. AAT Use for items 50 pages or less (see Merriam-Webster for definition)
Pardons ǂ2 aat Official documents declaring the exemption of a convicted person from the penalties of an offense or crime by the power of the executor of laws. AAT
Parish registers use Parochial records
Parochial records ǂ2 aat Use for records established and kept by an ecclesiastical parish, recording chronologically baptisms, marriages, burials, and other information. UF Parish registers.
Parodies ǂ2 rbgenr Use for humorous, sometimes satiric, imitations of other works. RBMS
Part books ǂ2 rbgenr Use for copies of one or more (but not all) parts for the use of participating voices or instruments in a musical work
Pasquinades ǂ2 rbgenr Use for satires or lampoons intended to be posted in a public place. RBMS
Pattern books ǂ2 rbgenr Use for books of actual patterns. RBMS
Pedigrees use Genealogies
Pen and ink drawings use BT Drawings
Periodical illustrations ǂ2 gmgpc Detached illustrations are included as well as original drawings, photographs, and prints intended for publication or actually published as illustrations in periodicals. TGM
Periodicals ǂ2 rbgenr Publications issued at regular intervals of more than one day. AAT B
Perpetual calendars ǂ2 rbgenr Use for tables that allow determination of the correct day of the week for any given date over a wide range of years. RBMS Use only when cataloging a stand-alone perpetual calendar. B, G, M
Petitions ǂ2 rbgenr Includes any written requests and lists of signatures submitted to an authority to appeal for the performance of specific action. AAT
Photographs ǂ2 gmgpc Refers to still images produced from radiation-sensitive materials (sensitive to light, electron beams, or nuclear radiation), generally by means of the chemical action of light on a sensitive film, paper, glass, or metal. AAT Photographs reproducing paintings or other artworks should NOT be traced in a 655.
Photomechanical prints ǂ2 gmgpc Prints made from photographically prepared printing surfaces. Most have a distinctive dot or screen pattern, but some are continuous tone. Usually planographic. UF Process prints TGM
Pictorial bindings (Binding) ǂ2 rbbin B
Plans ǂ2 gmgpc Graphic delineations of a site, structure, or object in a horizontal projection. Projection lines are parallel to the picture plane rather than in perspective. TGM
Playbills ǂ2 rbgenr Use for single-sheet items advertising plays, usually announcing the cast. RBMS Assume printed unless manuscript is specified.
Players' parts ǂ2 local Use for actors' individual scripts, containing only their own dialogue and cue lines.
Playing cards ǂ2 gmgpc Cards made in sets of a designated number of cards and marked for use in playing one or more games or telling fortunes. TGM
Plays (performing arts compositions) ǂ2 aat Use for dramatic compositions, arranged for enactment, as by actors on a stage. M
Plots use Scenarios
Poems ǂ2 rbgenr Written or oral compositions characterized by condensed language chosen for sound and suggestive power as well as meaning, and by the use of such literary techniques as structured meter, natural cadences, rhyme, or metaphor. AAT
Poetical miscellanies ǂ2 rbgenr Use for collections of contemporary poems by different authors, usually dealing with various topics and primarily published from the 16th through the 18th centuries. RBMS Use also for manuscript collections.
Portraits ǂ2 gmgpc Graphic representations, especially of the face, of real persons, usually posed, living or dead. Pictures whose purpose is the portrayal of an individual or several people, not pictures that merely include people as part of an event or scene. TGM Subdivide by gender (ǂx [Female or Male]) as well as century.
Postcards ǂ2 gmgpc Cards on which a message may be written or printed for mailing without an envelope; often include a pictorial, comic, or other scene on one side. TGM
Posters ǂ2 rbgenr Single or multi-sheet notices made to attract attention to events, activities, causes, goods, or services; also, purely decorative posters. For posting, usually in a public place; chiefly pictorial. Intended to make an immediate impression from a distance. TGM
Prayer books ǂ2 rbgenr Use for books of personal prayer; they may include selections from liturgical books. RBMS
Prayers ǂ2 rbgenr Use for individually issued prayers, not in book form.
Presentation copies (Provenance) ǂ2 rbprov Use for materials that have been formally presented as a gift to a person or body. Use in conjunction with the relationship designators inscriber and former owner as appropriate. Note: in 2011-01-14: added because "inscriber" doesn't necessarily work well with manuscripts, but "presentation copies" works for both books and manuscripts. Update: in 2019-02-28 we reiterated that we want to keep "Presentation copies (Provenance) limited to very special unique objects, typically presentation manuscripts (the Esther Inglis sort of thing) or printed books with special bindings or title pages. Do not use for books that simply have a "For my dear friend..." handwritten on the endleaf.
Press kits ǂ2 aat Packets of promotional materials for distribution to the press, as at a press conference. For official or authoritative statements distributed to the press typically by a public relations firm or government agency, use "press releases." AAT
Pressbooks (theatre manuals) ǂ2 aat Manuals provided to theater owners, especially in the 1930s and 1940s, advising them on how to promote a particular motion picture being shown in their theater. AAT Use for exhibitors' campaign books.
Prices (Provenance) ǂ2 rbprov Use for prices in materials indicating purchase cost information by a previous owner or relating to secondary selling, e.g., second-hand dealer prices, auction prices. RBMS Use for pre-19th century manuscript prices, especially auction prices. B
Printed waste (Binding) ǂ2 rbbin Use for the presence of printed waste paper in bindings.
Printers' advertisements ǂ2 rbgenr Use for advertisements for books &c. printed by an entity who is clearly not the bookseller or publisher
Printers' devices (Printing) ǂ2 rbpri Emblematic designs or devices of a printer or publisher. The printer's mark as an identifying device was used in typographic books with the invention of printing in the 15th century; printers gradually added a blank piece of paper at the front of a book to protect the first page from soiling. The identifying device, monogram, or emblem was applied to this page or with a brief sentence at the rear of the book; when the printer's mark was incorporated into the colophon, it is sometimes itself known as a "colophon." AAT Use only for printers' devices cataloged as individual items. For printers' devices in the Folger rare book collection, search for "printer's device" as a phrase. G
Printing privileges (Publishing) ǂ2 rbpub Use for printed works containing a statement granting an exclusive right to print a work or a class work of works. UF Imprimaturs: works containing an official endorsement of the content, usually by the Roman Catholic church. B
Prints ǂ2 gmgpc Images formed by transfer from one surface or source to another. Usually created with ink(s) and produced in multiple impressions. TGM Do not use narrower terms, e.g., Mezzotints, Etchings, Lithographs, etc.
Private press books (Publishing) ǂ2 rbpub B
Prize books (Provenance) ǂ2 rbprov B
Proclamations ǂ2 rbgenr Documents that are publicly announced or officially declared; especially a public notice by an official of some order, intended action, or state of facts. AAT
Programs ǂ2 rbgenr Use for lists of the events, pieces, performers, speakers, etc., of an entertainment, ceremony, or the like. RBMS
Prologues and epilogues ǂ2 local Use for poems, speeches, or other literary works written to be spoken or performed before or after a play.
Promissory notes ǂ2 aat Unconditional written promises to pay on demand, or at a fixed or determined future time, a certain sum of money to, or to the order of, a specified person or to the bearer. AAT
Promptbooks ǂ2 rbgenr Use for plays with manuscript production annotations. RBMS
Proofs (Printing) ǂ2 rbpri Refers to trial sheets of printed matter that are checked against original manuscripts and on which errors can be corrected and alterations made. AAT (Proofs (printed matter)) For proofs of graphic materials, use Proofs (printed matter). B M
Proofs (printed matter) ǂ2 gmgpc In printmaking, impressions taken at any stage from a plate, block, or stone, but not considered part of the edition. In photography, photographic prints made as quick records of a negative or for clients to choose from, as with studio portraits. TGM Use a more specific term when appropriate: Trial proofs, Counterproofs, Proofs before letters. For proofs of textual material, use Proofs (Printing). G
Proofs before letters ǂ2 gmgpc In printmaking, impressions complete except for a title or publication statement to be printed outside of the image area. TGM
Prophecies ǂ2 lcgft Use for written utterances declaring divine will and purpose, or predicting things to come.
Props use Stage props
Prospectuses ǂ2 rbgenr Use for formal summaries of proposed commercial, literary, or other ventures to solicit investment, purchase, or participation. RBMS
Proverbs ǂ2 rbgenr Refers to short, concise sayings repeated colloquially expressing a general truth or observation about human life or behavior, often embodying the folk wisdom of a group or nation. Distinguished from Aphorisms which are statements of principle or precepts, often of known authorship. AAT
Psalters ǂ2 rbgenr Use for books containing only the Psalms. RBMS
Publishers' advertisements ǂ2 rbgenr Use Booksellers' advertisements rather than this term for examples appearing before the roles of bookseller and publisher were clearly differentiated. RBMS
Publishers' catalogs ǂ2 rbgenr Use Booksellers' catalogs rather than this term for examples appearing before the roles of bookseller and publisher were clearly differentiated. RBMS
Puzzles use Games
Radio plays ǂ2 rbgenr Use for scripts of radio plays
Receipt books use Cookbooks and/or Medical formularies. [Most Folger receipt books will require both use terms.]
Receipts (financial records) ǂ2 aat Written acknowledgment of the receiving or taking of goods or money delivered or paid. AAT
Regulations ǂ2 rbgenr BT Legal works. Regulations issued by a governmental agency, having the force of law, to interpret or implement the provisions of a statute. AAT (Administrative regulations)
Riddles use Games
Romances ǂ2 rbgenr Use for medieval and Renaissance tales in prose or verse celebrating the adventures, in love and war, of some hero of chivalry. Do not use for modern romance novels. RBMS
Sammelbands (Provenance) ǂ2 rbprov Use for separately-produced works bound together for the owner during the medieval or early modern period. Note: this scope note is in the process of being revised, partly to remove the period limitation. RBMS
Satires ǂ2 rbgenr Literary compositions in verse or prose in which human folly and vice are held up to scorn, derision, or ridicule. AAT (Satires (document genre)) Folger practice: use for both literary and visual satires.
Scenarios ǂ2 rbgenr Use for plot outlines of dramatic works. RBMS
Scores ǂ2 rbgenr Original and entire drafts or transcripts of musical compositions or arrangements, with the parts of all the different instruments or voices written on staffs one above another, so that they can be read at a glance. AAT
Scrapbooks ǂ2 rbgenr Use for albums containing a variety of items, especially when those items serve as memorabilia. AAT
Screenplays use Film scripts
Seals (Impressions) ǂ2 gmgpc Wax or embossed impressions; chiefly used to certify a signature or authenticate a document. TGM Use for personal or unofficial seals B G
Seals (Impressions) ǂx Official ǂ2 gmgpc Wax or embossed impressions; chiefly used to certify a signature or authenticate a document. TGM Use for official seals; subdivide by country and century. B G M
Sermons ǂ2 rbgenr Religious discourses delivered as part of a church service. AAT
Set design drawings ǂ2 gmgpc Graphic delineations made for the design and production (or documentation of design and production) of stage settings for theatrical, movie, broadcast, or other performing arts productions. TGM
Ships' logs ǂ2 aat Daily records of the progress of a ship at sea, with notes on the weather and important incidents of the voyage. AAT
Ships' manifests ǂ2 aat Lists or invoices of cargo on a ship, usually containing marks or indication of contents or commodity, consignee, and other pertinent information for use at terminals or customhouses. AAT
Short films ǂ2 lcgft This heading is used as a genre/form heading for films usually limited to a running time of less than 40 minutes LC
Shorthand ǂ2 aat Use for methods of handwriting that use simplified strokes, abbreviations, or symbols to facilitate rapid writing. AAT
Signatures use Autographs
Signing patterns (Printing) ǂ2 rbpri Use for signatures with patterns such as alternating 12's and 6's. RBMS Use only in extremely unusual signing pattern situations.
Silent films ǂ2 lcgft This heading is used as a genre/form heading for films produced in the early days of the motion picture industry before the advent of talking films LC
Silhouettes ǂ2 gmgpc Images shown in profile in a single hue against a contrasting background; cut, drawn, painted, printed, or photographic; often portraits. TGM
Slides ǂ2 gmgpc Transparent materials on which there is a drawn image or a positive photographic image; intended to be bound or held in a mount and usually designed for use in a projector or viewer. TGM
Slurs (Printing) ǂ2 rbpri Use for blurred or doubled ink impressions caused by the sliding of the paper on the printing surface. RBMS
Songs ǂ2 rbgenr Use for written poems that include musical notation, specify a tune, and/or call themselves a song.
Souvenir programs ǂ2 rbgenr Use for programs distributed to commemorate a specific event, e.g., the dedication of a monument. RBMS Use for published souvenirs, even if a specific date or occasion is not mentioned. B G
Stage props ǂ2 gmgpc Use for movable physical objects used on a stage set that are not costume or structurally part of the set, such as furnishings, decorations, and objects held or touched by actors.
Subscription lists (Publishing) ǂ2 rbpub Lists or records of subscriptions and subscribers. AAT
Surveys (documents) ǂ2 aat Documentation of examinations or inspections conducted in order to achieve a comprehensive view, as of a place, a group of related items, or to ascertain condition or value. For detailed lists of items on hand, or of items in a given category, use Inventories. For sets of questions submitted to a number of persons to obtain information, use Questionnaires. AAT
Telegrams ǂ2 aat Messages sent by telegraph. UF Cablegrams AAT
Textbooks ǂ2 rbgenr Books used as standard works for the formal study of a particular subject. UF Instruction books AAT B
Tickets ǂ2 gmgpc Slips of paper, cardboard, or other material used for admission or passage. TGM
Ties (Binding) ǂ2 rbbin Cords, bands, or similar flexible devices used for fastening, especially by interlacing, such as in a knot or bow. AAT (Ties (fasteners)) Use whenever there is evidence of original ties on bindings, even if now missing. B M
Title pages ǂ2 gmgpc Pages bearing the title and usually the names of author and publisher, and date and place of publication of a book, portfolio, or other material. TGM Use when cataloging individual title pages in the art collection.
Toy theaters ǂ2 aat Toys comprising engravings in miniature of the characters, scenery, stage, and proscenium, either hand-colored or without color for the child to color him- or herself; they were designed to be cut out and mounted on stiff backing such as cardboard or wood. AAT
Tracts (documents) ǂ2 aat Brief treatises or pamphlets for general distribution, usually on a religious or political topic. AAT
Translations ǂ2 rbgenr Translated versions of a text. AAT B M
Treasure bindings ǂ2 rbbin "Covered with gold and silver, ivories, enamelwork, and gems." -- Needham. UF Medieval treasure bindings. RBMS Use for narrow terms Enamel bindings, Ivory bindings, Jewelled bindings, and Silver bindings.
Treaties ǂ2 rbgenr Agreements or contracts made between two or more states, formally signed by duly authorized representatives, and usually ratified by the lawmaking authority of the states, as treaties of peace or alliance, or commercial treaties. AAT
Trial proceedings ǂ2 rbgenr Use for official or unofficial written accounts of judicial trials of any kind
Trial proofs ǂ2 gmgpc Prints made before the completion of the accepted impression. TGM
Underscoring (Provenance) ǂ2 rbprov Use for resources that have been underlined in manuscripts B
Verses use Poems
Visiting cards ǂ2 gmgpc Small cards bearing a person's name and sometimes address; presented when making a formal social call. May have a portrait, scene, or decoration; may be accompanied by an envelope. TGM
Volvelles ǂ2 rbgenr Use for devices, whether individual or in books, consisting of one or more movable circles surrounded by other graduated or figured circles and intended for the calculation of astronomical or other data. RBMS
Vues d'optique ǂ2 gmgpc Prints intended for viewing through an optical system such as a zogroscope that enhances the effect of perspective. Because the viewing device included a mirror, the lettering and image are usually laterally reversed. Common in the late 1700s in Europe for peep shows. TGM
Warrants ǂ2 aat Documents giving authority to do something; especially used in civil and criminal law for the arrest of persons or for their production in court as witnesses. AAT Most commonly used for documents authorizing payment
Watch papers ǂ2 gmgpc Circular papers used to ensure a tight fit between inner and outer cases of a pocket watch. Often contain watchmaker's or watch owner's name. TGM
Watercolors ǂ2 gmgpc Use for Watercolor drawings and Watercolor paintings. TGM
Watermarks (Paper) ǂ2 rbpap Use for any pattern in the paper which appears when the paper is held up to the light, and light shines through because the paper is thinner where the pattern is formed. Terms listed here are general designations of types of watermarks, and do not indicate specific shapes or patterns, which can be described in notes in the cataloguing record. Libraries may wish to sub- divide the general term Watermarks by the images they portray. For example: 655 Watermarks (Paper) ǂx Lion. RBMS Use when the item being cataloged is a watermark.
Wedding books ǂ2 rbgenr Use for works which recount and depict nuptial festivities and events, chiefly of royalty, nobility, or famous persons, and which may also include literary works offered to the principals, such as epithalamia or the Italian "per le nozze." RBMS B
Wills ǂ2 aat Legal instruments in which a person declares the disposition of his/her property, to take effect after his/her death, and which is revocable during the lifetime of that person. AAT
Writing books ǂ2 rbgenr Use for books which provide instruction in handwriting or penmanship. RBMS B
Writing tables (Paper) ǂ2 rbpap Use for paper or vellum treated to enable erasure and intended for use with a metal stylus. RBMS
  1. Leslie, Deborah J.. 1997. “"Provenance Evidence" and "Printing and Publishing Evidence": Use and Revision of the RBMS Thesauri”. The Papers of the Bibliographical Society of America 91 (4). [University of Chicago Press, Bibliographical Society of America]: 517–23.