Online Library of Liberty

A collection of scholarly works about individual liberty and free markets. A project of Liberty Fund, Inc.

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Advanced Search Tips

This page has tips on doing advanced searches, such as unfiltered searches, searches filtered by author or title, and searches of an author’s entire works.

Advanced Searches

Tips on searching for a key phrase such as “right reason.”

  • Principles of Organization of the Authors and Texts
  • Unfiltered Search
  • Filtered Searches (Author)
  • Filtered Searches (Title)
  • Search an Author’s Works

Principles of Organization of the Authors and Texts

To select the best way of filtering your searches you need to know something about how the authors and titles are categorized in the OLL collection.

Authors are assigned to various groups, such as “Historical Period”, a “School of Thought”, and “Nationality”. For example, John Locke (1632-1704) has been assigned to the following groups: the Early Modern Period, 17th Century Natural Rights Theorists, and English nationality.

Titles are also assigned to various collections, such as “Historical Period”, “Subject Area”, and “Topic”. For example, Locke’s Two Treatises of Civil Government (1689) has been assigned to the following collections: the Early Modern Period, Political Theory, and the topic of Natural Law and Natural Rights.

Unfiltered Searches

(1.) Click on “Advanced Search” in the top right of the page banner.

(2.) Type the phrase “right reason” in the box called “Search terms”. Then hit the “Search…” button below.

Note: The default setting is to search by “Author”. To search by “Title” select the “Title” tab in the section called “Filter by…” At this stage of the search there is no difference between the two types of searches. These filters will be more useful if you wish to narrow the field of your search [see below for details].

(3.) 178 results are returned and listed. Scroll down the page to see them. They are listed under the title in which they occur. Go to the title of your choice.

For example, there are 8 references to “right reason” in Cicero’s Treatise on the Laws. Let us suppose that you are interested in the fourth occurrence of the phrase in Cicero: “There can be but one essential justice, which cements society, and one law which establishes this justice. This law is right reason, which is the true rule of all commandments and prohibitions. Whoever neglects this law, whether written or unwritten, is necessarily …”

(4.) To see this reference in context, click the title at the top of the list to go to Cicero’s Treatise on the Laws. You will be taken to the paragraph in that book where the first reference on the list of 8 can be found. The search phrase “right reason” will be highlighted in yellow. To go to the 4th occurrence of the phrase, click on the highlighted phrases until you come to the one you are interested in.

Note: When you move your cursor over a paragraph you will notice two icons at the top left corner of the paragraph: an Anchor and a Star.

(5.) Clicking on the Star will show a box with the following bibliographic details abut that paragraph (including its URL) which can be copied and pasted into your document: Marcus Tullius Cicero, The Political Works of Marcus Tullius Cicero: Comprising his Treatise on the Commonwealth; and his Treatise on the Laws. Translated from the original, with Dissertations and Notes in Two Volumes. By Francis Barham, Esq. (London: Edmund Spettigue, 1841-42). Vol. 2. 6/4/2014. /titles/545#Cicero_0044-02_160

Clicking on the Anchor will show a box with only the URL for that paragraph: /titles/545#Cicero_0044-02_160

Filtered Searches (Author)

(1.) You can narrow the field of your search by using the Filters, such as “Author” or “Title”, and then within those two areas by 3 other sets of filters. [See above for a description of the filters available for Authors.]

For example, let us look for uses of this phrase “right reason” in 17th century English thought (I have in mind John Locke in particular).

(2.) Click on “Advanced Search” in the top right of the page banner.

(3.) Type the phrase “right reason” in the box called “Search terms”. The default setting is to Filter by Author. I wish to narrow the search, so I then select “The Early Modern Period” from the “Historical Period” filter.

Then hit the “Search…” button below.

(4.) 48 results are displayed including works by Culverwell, Bayle, Pufendorf, Locke, Sidney, Milton, Grotius, and others.

(5.) To limit the search further I can add another filter, such as “English” from the “Nationality” filter. The next search I do will only return results from English authors writing in the Early Modern Period. Click on the “Search…” button below to do another search. This time there are only 31 results.

(6.) Scroll down the page to find the author and title which interests you. Then follow the steps listed above (Unfiltered Search no. 4 and following).

Filtered Searches (Title)

(1.) You can narrow the field of your search by using the Filters, such as “Author” or “Title”, and then within those two areas by 3 other sets of filters. [See above for a description of the filters available for Titles.]

For example, let us look for uses of this phrase “right reason” in 17th century English political thought (I have in mind John Locke in particular).

(2.) Click on “Advanced Search” in the the top right of the page banner.

(3.) Type the phrase “right reason” in the box called “Search terms”. The default setting is to Filter by Author. I wish to search by title so I select the “Title” panel on the “Filter by:” box. I also wish to limite my search so I select the following filters from the 3 options available:

Historical Period: The Early Modern Period [which produces 48 results]

then with Subject Area: Political Theory [which limits the number of results to 24]

and then also with Topic: Natural Law and Natural Rights [which limits to the number of results to 2]

[If I had chosen another Topic instead of Natural Law and Natural Rights, let us say The English Revolution, the search would produce 9 results.]

(4.) Scroll down the page to find the author and title which interests you. Then follow the steps listed above (Unfiltered Search no. 4 and following).

Other Ways of Searching

To Search an Author’s Works

(1.) Another way to search the collection is via an Author’s works. Let’s continue with the example of John Lock and the phrase “right reason”.

(2.) Go to the Search Box at the top right of the page banner. Select “Author names” from the drop down menu and then type “Locke” in the empty search box. Hit return to begin the search.

(3.) This will display a page listing all the authors who have “Locke” in their name. Click on the name you want and you will be taken to that author’s main page with information about them and a list of their works in the OLL collection.

(4.) Above the picture of John Locke there is a search box called “Search this author’s works:” Type in the search phrase “right reason” in this box and then hit return to begin the search. This will search only works by John Locke for this phrase.

(5.) 7 results are listed. Scroll down the page to find the title and occurrence of the phrase which interests you. Then follow the steps listed above (Unfiltered Search no. 4 and following).

Last modified June 04, 2014