Advanced search

Discover provides an advanced search form, allowing you to limit your search in a variety of different ways. You can access the advanced search form here, or by clicking the 'More search options' link underneath the search box on the main search page.

Basic details

Use the fields at the top of the form to enter details of the material(s) you are looking for, such as author, title or publisher.


You can enter more than one ISBN (International Standard Book Number - for books), ISSN (International Standard Serial Number - for journals and periodicals) or ISMN (International Standard Music Number - for printed music) in the standard number field, and you will get results for all of the numbers entered. Separate these numbers with a space, but not a comma.

You can enter a single year in the 'Year Published' field, or a range, e.g.:

1455-1501 (for materials published between 1455 and 1501 inclusive)

1455- (for materials published after, but including, 1455)

-1501 (for materials published up to, and including, 1501)

The 'Subject' field allows you to search for records containing the subjects you enter in the specific subject fields within the bibliographic records. It is worth noting that not all of the records sent to us have subjects added in this way, so a subject search will not show you all of the records in the database related to a particular subject, and you may find it helpful to supplement it with further searches trying different strategies. The 'Keywords' field will search for your terms in fields across the record, not just in the specific subject fields.

You can include more than one term in the 'Keywords' field - your search will return records which contain all of the given keywords. If you wish to search for an exact phrase, use double quotation marks, e.g.:

"red morocco binding"

Further options

Using the option boxes further down the form, you can also limit your search by document type and format; language; holding library and region.

For each of these options, click on an item in the list on the left-hand side to add it to your search. It will move to the list on the right-hand side. To remove it, click on the item in the list on the right-hand side. It will move back to the list on the left. You can add as many options as you wish for each of these parameters to your search query.

For the language and library options, you can select all of the items in the list using the 'Select All' button. You can then remove single items by clicking on them in the list on the right-hand side. This offers a quicker way of selecting a long list of values.

For the language and library options, you can also search for an item in the list by beginning to type a name into the search field at the top of the box.

The region option will limit your search to the holdings of all contributing libraries within that region.

You can collapse and expand any of these option boxes using the blue arrow button above the box next to the option name.