Quick search is a free-text search that works in a similar way to Google. When two or more terms are entered, the search engine retrieves records containing all the terms.
To retrieve records containing a phrase, use quote marks, e.g. "All people that on earth do dwell"
To retrieve records containing any one of your terms, use OR, e.g. blow OR purcell
To exclude a term, use NOT, e.g. lawes NOT william
To specify that a term should be near another term, use quote marks and a tilde ~. E.g. "heard voice"~4 will find the terms 'heard' and 'voice' within four words of each other
To truncate a search term, use an asterisk. E.g. show* will find show, shows, showeth, shower, etc.
To replace a single letter with a wildcard, use a question mark. E.g. m?nuet will find minuet and menuet
To replace one or more whole words with a wildcard, use < >. E.g. "Sing < > God" will find the anthems 'Sing unto God' and 'O sing joyfully unto God' etc.
Advanced search allows you to search specific fields, in any combination. You can also choose whether to retrieve results meeting all or any of the conditions you choose. The wildcards and operators described under Quick search can also be applied to terms in the Advanced search boxes.
You can add as many search terms as you like to your query by clicking 'Add another search term'. By selecting 'Browse index for your search terms', you can choose terms from the indexes of People, Institutions, Titles, Subjects and Library sigla. Just type the first couple of letters of the term, and you will be dropped down to the correct point in the alphabetical index.
Incipit search (tune search)
Search tips may be found on the Advanced search screen. Simply type in the letter names of the first 7 or more notes, in upper case, along with sharp (x) and flat (b) signs, and the octave indicators shown on the Advanced search screen. You can use the incipit search in combination with the other fields in Advanced search and can refine your search to retrieve music in a certain key.
Once you have retrieved a set of results, you can refine it further using the Filters option at the top of the screen. The options are the same as those in Advanced search. Each filter you add remains attached to your results until you remove it from the Filters box or you start a new search using Quick search or Advanced search. When you add a new filter, you see an option to 'Open in adv. search'. This transfers your filter to the Advanced search screen, where you can amend it or add further terms to your query.
Sorting resultsYou can sort your results by Composer, Standardized Title, Title on Manuscript, Siglum and MS no. by clicking at the top of the relevant column. Clicking a second time sorts the results into reverse alphabetical order.
Browse the database
From the menu on the left, you can browse the database's indexes of People, Institutions, Titles, Subjects and Library Sigla. From each of those records, you can bring up a list of associated manuscripts.
From a list of results you can view the full record for a work. There, you can click the Library siglum link to bring up the contact details for the organisation holding the manuscript. Names of people associated with the manuscript, such as composer, scribe and dedicatee, also have links, which when clicked bring up all manuscripts with which they are associated. Above the image of each music incipit are three more links, enabling you to download and save the incipit as a PDF file, Lilypond file or text file containing the Plaine and Easie code respectively.