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Data Structure

Each text and each image has a description and categories.

The description mainly contains information about the author and the publication.

Most categories are subject matters, names of persons or places, abstract terms, mentioned in the text/image. Nearly all categories are in Russian in Cyrillic letters.

Synonyms are equivalents of categories in a different spelling and/or language and/or alphabet. For example: Бухара – Buxoro, Бухоро, بخارا; Железная дорога - Demir yolu

In some cases the description of categories are long lists of other categories attributed to the category in question (for example Russian terms in Русские слова).

Basic Search

The database allows searching for categories and in full text.

The list of the 50 major subject matters plays an important role.

Enter one or more words in the search field. You will get

Texts and images are sorted by relevance. A frequent word has low weight, a rare word high weight. The frequency is calculated using all texts in the database, and using the words in one text. The relevance is computed by combining the weights of the words.

For searching in the description put “d:” in front of the search word, for example d:1861 for texts published in 1861.

The minimum word length for search words is 3 letters for Latin and 2 for Cyrillic and Arabic words.

The search is case insensitive, you get the same results when you enter бухара or Бухара or бУхАрА

Advanced Search

“or” Search

When entering several search words, you are doing an “or” search, so that any text or image is found that contains at least one of your search words.

“+” Search

If you put a “+” in front of a search word, this word must be found in the text or image. For example: Бухара +война = You will get all texts mentioning war in Bukhara.

If you put a “+” in front of all search words, you are doing an “and” search.

“-” Search

If you put a “-” in front of a search word, you exclude all texts containing the search word. You have to combine a “-“ search with another search type. For example Бухара –война = You will get all texts about Bukhara, but without texts about wars in Bukhara.

“*” Search

“*” means truncated search. If you put a “*” at the end of your search term, every word that starts with this term will be found, regardless of declination or conjugation. For example: Бухара войн*= you will get texts containing forms like: войны, войну, войнство, войнский.

Search within a text

Usually it is easy to find the relevant passage within a document. This is always true for hits in full text search since the relevant passage is shown in the search result. If your search yields categories, use the “search on this page” function of your browser.

You will find jump labels (“labels“) mainly in abstract categories in long texts. Labels will be indicated. A click on the label will lead to the relevant passage.

Links between pictures and texts

Texts and pictures that belong together are connected by hyperlinks. By clicking on the link you can switch from picture to text and back.

Display problems with characters

If your browser does not display Arabic and Cyrillic characters, your system needs to be configured for Unicode. For the operating systems Windows, Mac and Unix/Linux and a lot of browsers you can find detailed explanation on