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Searching the Database

Searching the Database

The database uses Omeka's native simple and advanced search functions, along with the SOLRSearch plugin for simple search results. There are two methods for searching the database: simple and advanced.

Simple Search

There are three methods of executing a simple search.

1) Keyword:

This method is the nearest available to a Google-style search and is the default method for the simple search bar. Enter your term in the search bar on the left and click on the magnifying glass (or hit return on your keyboard). This will run a default keyword search, sorting your results by relevance. You may further refine your search results by selecting relevant facets from the left side of the results page. Example: a search for 'Poetica d'Aristotile' will return all records with Poetica d'Aristotile occurring first, followed by those which contain Poetica and d'Aristotile.

2) Boolean: 

This method allows for more fine-tuning, but will not return results by relevance. Click on the ellipsis [...] next to the search bar and select "Boolean" for your query type. You may now use Boolean operators in your search. These may be used at the beginning or at the end of a search word.

Common operators include: 

*: wildcard truncation. Appending this character to a word will search for all possible records that contain words beginning with what precedes the * Thus, a search for poetic* will return all records with words matching poetic, poetics, poetica, poeticae, etc...).

"": phrase. Any terms enclosed within double quotation marks will search for records that contain the literal phrase as it was typed (including all spaces). Thus, a search for 'DENORES Giason' will only return records where the author's name appears as "DENORES Giason".

+ or -: include/exclude. The plus and minus operators are placed before search terms and indicate that the record either must or must not contain the particular term. Thus, searching for +Piccolomini -sfera will return all records that contain "Piccolomini", but will omit all records that contain "sfera" (even if these records contain "Piccolomini").

More operators can be found on the Omeka and MySQL websites.

3) Exact match:

This method is useful when neither Keyword nor Boolean methods produce results. This method will return records that contain at least one match to the words as they are typed in the search bar (similar to using the "" boolean operator). This search type can be useful when searching for small words since the database cannot index terms shorter than 4 characters. Thus a search for de le theoriche may call for this method if the earlier two methods do not work. 

Advanced Search

The advanced search page can be accessed from the menu on the left-hand side of the site. If keywords are used, results will be returned in order of relevance. An advanced search may be fine-tuned in the following ways:

1) Keywords.

Enter any keywords that you want to include in your search in the dialog box.

2) Narrow by Specific Fields. 

This section is composed of three inputs. First, select the field you would like to search for (Author, Dedicatee, Printer, etc...). Second, select your query type (contains, does not contain, is exactly, etc...). Lastly, input your query. Thus, a search for Dedicatee contains Medici will return all records where the dedicatee contains the term Medici. You may add as many fields as you like by clicking on the "Add a field" button".

3) Record Type

Use this drop-down menu to select the type of record you wish to search (Aristotelian Work, Manuscript Copy, Printed Edition, Dedicatee, Printer, or Author).

4) Controlled Vocabularies

Use the fields in this section to search by Branch of Philosophy, Related to Aristotle's..., Type, and Genre. N.B. For these fields to be active for search you must select the field on the left, before specifying your selection on the right. 

Once you have specified your search, click on "Search for items".