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Last Updated: Mar 16, 2017 URL: Print Guide RSS UpdatesEmail Alerts

Database Search Tips Print Page

Proximity & Truncation Searching

Some databases allow you to find words near each other (proximity) and or search word roots (truncation):

Proximity searching offers two advantages:
1) You will see a smaller set of more relevant articles and
2) Your search words will be in the same sentence or paragraph instead of separated across the text of the article.

Truncation searching offers the advantage of searching for variations of the search words.


Database  Examples of Proximity & Truncation
10,000+ current full text journals

Olympics Brazil       finds    6045 articles
Olympics n5 Brazil  finds     966 articles

n5 means find these words within 5 words of each other. 
Try n10 or n12 to find the words a little farther apart.

Olympi#            searches Olympics, Olympian, Olympiad, etc.

1000+ full text journals
(First volume to last 3 years)

Olympics Brazil       finds    716 articles
"Olympics Brazil"~10  finds     16 articles

~10 means find these words within 10 words of each other.

Brasil#      searches Brasil, Brasilian, Brasilians

1000s of newspapers from around the world
intifada w/5 Gaza!

Gaza!           searches Gaza, Gaza’s, Gazans
Indianapolis Star:
Full text of articles 1991-present

Colts N/10 Draft

farm*     searches: farm, farms, farmer, farming


The Lilly Library is a founding member of PALNI, ALI, and The Oberlin Group


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