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Search Help

  • Browse: The Browse feature will allow you to view all of the records in a specific category.
  • Simple: Results from the simple search are obtained by searching against the author, title, publisher, notes, reviews, and people fields; it is a good way to find information quickly, although result sets can be quite large.
  • Advanced: The advanced search will look only in the fields that have keywords specified and is a good way to get more specific results (e.g., if you are seeking only titles containing a specific word by a specific author).

Searches can include search individual terms, phrases (indicated by enclosing the terms in double quotes (“ ”), and Boolean operators. For example, using the Simple Search interface a search for CD-ROM publications by James Harner might be entered like this: cd-rom and “harner, james”


All search features provide the following sort options:

  • Author: Sorts alphabetically based on the author’s last name (for multiple authors only the first one listed is used as a sorting reference).
  • Date: Sorts based on year starting with the most recent. Documents with unknown publication or production dates are listed last.
  • Title: Sorts alphabetically based on title.


Boolean operators (AND, OR, NOT) can be inserted along with search words or phrases in the search fields of both the basic and advanced searches.

Examples: romeo OR “juliet capulet”
juliet AND NOT romeo
juliet AND romeo

In addition to allowing Boolean operators directly in the search fields, the advanced search offers the option to join the search fields with either an AND or an OR operator by selecting the appropriate value from the radio buttons at the top of the menu. If the OR operator is selected, results will be obtained based on finding ANY values returned from each of the search fields. This will produce more results, but the search will be less focused than with the AND operator, which only displays results based on the records which appear in the results of ALL fields being searched.

By default, all words in a search field are joined with the AND operator.

The Language and Document Type fields in the advanced search will not be affected by the Boolean operator and will always be used to limit your search results to the selections specified.


The asterisk symbol (*) can be used to represent one or more variable characters at the end of a search word, either on its own or with a phrase. For instance, if you wanted to find entries that contain the words DREAM, DREAMS, and DREAMING, you could input DREAM* to find all three. Using the wildcard for terms in a phrase follows the same rule, and the search for “ACT* PERFORMING” will find the phrases “ACT PERFORMING,” “ACTOR PERFORMING,” “ACTORS PERFORMING,” “ACTRESS PERFORMING,” and others.

Punctuation and Diacritical Characters

The search engine is not case sensitive (e.g., the same number of results will be produced for “WATER” as for “water” or “waTER”).

Because of the multitude of diacritical characters and language-specific uses of punctuation, wherever possible we have replicated the foreign character with its Latin alphabet equivalent for use in searching (e.g., the keyword “jose” will find “josé” as well as “jose”). When dealing with non-English names or titles, it is advisable to use the “*” wildcard to find all relative keywords.

Data Copyright, Folger Shakespeare Library, 2015, Version #20154, Privacy Statement, Terms and Conditions
Published for the Folger Shakespeare Library by the Johns Hopkins University Press.
Published for the Folger Shakespeare Library by the Johns Hopkins University Press. Published for the Folger Shakespeare Library by the Johns Hopkins University Press.