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library; The city library; The state library; The special library 175—188

9. History of books and libraries; Beginnings of libraries; Egypt;

Greece and Rome; Use of parchment; Middle ages; Form of

letters and illumination ; Size of libraries; Book trade in the

13th and 14th centuries; Use of paper; The printing press ;

Widespread use of the printing press; Modern libraries;

Library buildings .



The catalogue is the index to the books of a library. If a library is of any considerable size, it is necessary to have a catalogue in order to determine what books there are on certain subjects, what books there are by certain authors, and where to find them on the shelves. It is usually made up of author, subject, and title entries, on cards arranged in the order of the alphabet. When all three kinds of entries are arranged together in alphabetical order, it is called a dictionary catalogue; when author entries are filed separately, an author catalogue; when subject entries are filed separately, a subject catalogue; and title entries filed separately, a title catalogue. The entries, or cards, may also be arranged in the order of the books on the shelves, according to the classification number, as in the shelf list. In such case, we have a classed catalogue. The bibliographical information written on the card, including name of author, title of book, pages, date, etc., is called an entry. The use of cards for catalogues has become so common that frequently the words card and entry are used as though interchangeable.

The combined alphabetical arrangement is the most practical for public use. While such an arrangement of the entries is called a dictionary catalogue, it is more complicated than a dictionary because the words or topics of the latter are not subdivided as are some subjects of a catalogue; but in general, the arrangement is similar. Next to the books themselves the catalogue is the most important part of the equipment of a library.

Three Kinds of Entries.

The author entry consists of author's name, surname first, title of book, imprint (place, publisher, date), collation (pages, illustrations, size, etc.), and oftentimes other bibliographical data. In the upper left hand corner of each card entry are the classification and book numbers.

The entry for the subject is practically the same as for the author except that the subject is usually written in red letters one line above the author's name. The title entry consists of brief title, date of publication and author's name. If printed cards are used, the title entry is the same as the author, with brief title of book written at top of card.

Reference entries are used to call attention to related subjects under which additional information may possibly be found; to refer from words not used as subject headings to related words which are used; and to refer from one name to another when reference is necessary in order to guide the reader. Reference cards are usually filed after the last entry under a subject; at least that is the logical place for them.

Most of the older catalogues disclose entries written with pen and ink as well as typewritten and printed ones. The pen and ink entries are the oldest; the typewritten and printed, are of more recent date. Many of the libraries now purchase printed cards for all books for which cards have been printed.

The standard size of the cards used by libraries throughout the country is 7,5 by 12,5 centimeters, or approximately three by five inches. These cards may be purchased ruled for pen and ink, or ruled with one line for use on the typewriter.

Kinds of Catalogues.

No library in this country now depends upon the printed catalogue, although they were formerly used exclusively. Some, however, issue printed monthly or quarterly lists of books added to the collection, but depend chiefly upon the card catalogue. The printed catalogue has its merits and is the most satisfactory, if it could be kept up to date at a reasonable cost. Some libraries, especially in England, record the entries on sheets which are arranged in volumes as any other "looseleaf" publication. This arrangement is generally known as the "sheal" catalogue.

The prevailing form in this country is the dictionary card catalogue. It is probably as serviceable as any other form, if subjects are selected with discrimination and in sufficient numbers, and if a sufficient number of cross references are provided. Some investigators, however, especially those who have become accustomed to a classed catalogue, prefer that form because they find the cards arranged in the same order as the books on the shelves. Such an arrangement, however, may be found in almost every library in the shelf list.

As examples of different forms of arrangement, most of the printed catalogues issued by second-hand stores are classed; that is books on certain subjects, for example, birds, or literature, are arranged in alphabetical order by author's names under the subject. Those issued by publishing houses are, usually, author catalogues with index by title.

Dictionary Catalogue.

As previously indicated the dictionary catalogue is made up of author, subject and title entries, all filed together in alphabetical order. In looking over such a catalogue one will find one or more authors's names followed by a subject, under which several books may be listed; then perhaps other names; the title of a book; then another subject; and so on, all in alphabetical order. If an author has written more than one book there is an entry for each under his name; these are arranged in the order of the alphabet according to the first words of the titles of the books. The entries under subjects are alphabetical by author's names.

There is not much difficulty in arranging a list of names, or subjects, or titles of books, separately, in alphabetical order; but when the three are combined conflicts arise.

When a name,

Cannon for example, and a subject, Cannon, are identical the name precedes the subject. When a name, a subject, and the first word of the title of a book are identical the order of arrangement is author first, subject next and title last. That is entries for books by an author are followed by entries for books about the same author. Entries for Shakespeare's works are followed by entries for books about Shakespeare. This arrangement is followed whether the author is a single individual, a city, or a country.

The title of a book is sometimes overlooked in a catalogue because the first word is identical with an author's name a subject. This order of arrangement must be kept in mind in order to secure the best results.


Division of Subjects.

A larger number of subject entries are added to a catalogue than of either author or title. As the number under any particular heading increases it is necessary to segregate them according to similarity as they treat one phase of the subject or another; and to modify the heading accordingly, If the similar entries are not grouped together then the reader, or investigator, must axamine each one in order to find those that relate to some particular part or aspect of it. Hence the cataloguer segregates similar titles, those relating to similar aspects of subjects and places them together under appropriate headings. So for example we have under botany those titles which relate to the subject in general, then under botany-economic, those that relate to that phase of the subject, and some under botany-structural, and so on. Thus by division of subject the catalogue is made more definite and useful. In the “List of Subject Headings" the most important and useful headings are given for the larger subjects. But a catalogue is never completed, because new terms for headings must be selected from time to time as occasion demands.

The following lists of headings, indicating the arrangement, have been taken from the U. S. Catalogue and Reader's Guide.

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