Using advanced search

The advanced search function gives you more options to refine your search, and combine different search criteria. For example, you could limit your search to newspapers published in Sydney in the Greek language.

Searching within specific fields

In addition to searching the title, author and subject fields in our records (which you can also do in a simple search), the advanced search allows you to search specifically within fields such as:

  • the name of the publisher
  • the year an item was created or published
  • where a newspaper was published
  • the call number, also known as the Dewey number or shelf location
  • the accession number or image number, which are unique numbers assigned to manuscripts and pictures
  • the ISBN or ISSN
  • the notes, or general information about the item
  • the contents or summary notes, which tell you about the contents of an item
  • the language note, which includes both the language in which an item is written and the original language if it's a translation
  • any access conditions; for example, items that are out of copyright
  • the copyright status code

Example searches

To find:Select from drop-down menu:Type in:
Newspapers published in Bendigo 'in Place newspaper published' Bendigo
Books in Chinese 'in Language note'
Material type menu: 'Books'
Books about Mao Zedong in Chinese 'in Language note'
Material type menu: 'Books'
chinese (in first text box, corresponding to 'in Language note' selection)
mao zedong (in second text box, no need to alter the corresponding menus)
The single item with the accession number H91.282/1 'Accession/Image/Call no.' h91.282/1
The group of related items with the accession numbers H2011.36/1-67 'Accession/Image/Call no.' h2011.36*
The single item with the call number S 305.52 M33N 'Accession/Image/Call no.' "305.52 m33n" (omit any letters before the first number)
The group of items with 305.52 M33N in the call number 'Accession/Image/Call no.' 305.52*
Items that are out of copyright 'in Copyright status code' oc
Pictures that are out of copyright 'in Access conditions' + 'using exact phrase'
Material type menu: 'pictures'
out of copyright
Digitised items related to ships 'in State Library URL' (in first text box, corresponding to ‘in State Library URL’ selection)
ships (in second text box, no need to alter the corresponding menus)

Browse search

Browsing the catalogue can be a useful alternative to searching for a specific item, helping you find related items quickly. There are four types of lists you can browse:

  • Subject list – groups items together by specific topics. General topics are subdivided into narrower categories. Because the sub-topics are in a specific order, it works better to start with a single, general term.
  •  Author list – groups items alphabetically by the family name of the author or creator. To search, type a family name followed by a personal name or initial (if desired). For example, 'smith, j'.
  •  Title list – an alphabetical list of titles. To search, enter the title without any initial articles, such as 'the', 'a' or 'an'. For example, 'lord of the rings'.
  •  Call number list – a numerical list of Dewey numbers. To search, enter the call number without any location prefix (such as B, SLT, AO). Because Dewey numbers are based on subjects, this can be a useful way of finding related information regardless of where it is in the Library. This list also includes shelf names and locations for collections such as microfilm, pictures and other non-book materials, which may not be related by subject.

More search tips

For more search tips you can use in a simple or advanced search, see How to search.