British Library Home

 

Search tips

For best results please do not use the Browser Back button instead use the internal navigation links e.g. Refine search, Next and Previous, Return to brief display and the top menus.

Quick Search and Advanced Search

To Search for:  
a phrase enclose the words in quotation marks

Example: “East India Company”, “United Provinces”
two or more words enter the words one after the other, without links or punctuation

Example: Atkinson army
alternative words enter the words linked together with the word “OR”

Example: Calcutta OR Delhi
exclude a word from your search enter ‘-‘ before the word

Example: Surgeon - Veterinary
words with variant spellings enter the first few letters (at least three) followed by *

Example: a search on MacGui* will find MacGuiness and MacGuinnes

Viewing search summary & full record details  

If your search is successful, a summary list of records will be displayed.

To view full details of a particular record, click on the surname.

Return to the summary list by clicking the link provided. 

Advanced Search

Advanced search provides additional terms to search on. Some of these are:

Area or Event
To limit your search to a particular area and/or life event:
  • highlight your choice in the left-hand box.
  • Click Add to register your choice in the right-hand box.
    (You can add more than one)
  • To delete an area or event that you have already chosen, highlight and click Remove.
Date range
To limit your search to a particular period of time:
  • enter the start and/or end year.
    Enter as four figures (for example, 1784).

Refine search

If your search produces too many records, click Refine Search.
This will take you to advanced search, where you can modify the search terms.

 
Contact | Disclaimer | Privacy | Copyright © The British Library Board