Here you can find out everything you need to know about how to use this site.

Basic Searches

Basic searches are used to look through the basic header information of a play (Title, Author, Date) Every play within our database is searchable using this search.  The dates given are from the first performance when they are provided by Lacy's edition. The search will look for the entered word(s), returning a result whenever there is a match within that sentence.  By clicking on the title, you will be given a link to the play details.  Within the search results there will be an option to search the pdf for the frequency of a keyword before downloading the pdf if required.

  • eg. Searching for "hat" in the title will return any play where "hat" appears within a word or as a word.

Advanced Searches

Advanced searches are only available on fully encoded plays.  These plays appear in the play list with full date details (i.e.year/month/day).  A fully encoded play is a play that has been broken down and XML tagged to enable more thorough searches. Simply select the type of search you want to perform (i.e Places, Quotes, Names etc) and type in your keyword and submit, results shown will be only for that section.

A keyword search is slightly different in that it will search outside the tagged words. So searching for "Paris" in keyword will not return a result, as a search for "Paris" should be done with Places selected as the type. Keyword searches are good for phrases or single words that would not have been tagged. (i.e. Nature, landscape etc) 

Type Specific Searches 

This search is useful when you are looking for somethig in general. For instance if you were interested in mythical names, you can select "Mythical" from the "Names" section in the list and you will get an alphabetical list of all the mythical names that are stored in the database.

PDF Searches

PDF searches are very limited in the results they can produce. This feature was added as a quick way to scan a play without opening the PDF file, it is intended to be used on plays that are not fully tagged and therefore have no keywords assigned. The results will give you a frequency of the keyword used. Please note that due to the detailed nature of the programmes that appear from vol. 56 onwards, programmes were scanned as images and are therefore not searchable. 

About Results

Most results will give you a link for further information. For example if you search for "heard" within the advanced Keyword search you will get various results. If you click the link within the lists of play information you will be shown all the results from within that play with a page reference, name of the person speaking, and also where available, it will show an extract from the line with the keyword on.  Results from the front material appear as 'page 0'.  If a precise contextual reference is not available or 'N/A' this means that it appears between tagged elements.  These can be found by using your browser to search within the pdf once it has been downloaded.