Author: For a general instructions on how to formulate an author search, please consult the PhiloLogic User Documentation. Users of the OVI database should also note the following database-specific requirements when formulating an author search:
To determine where the comma should be placed when entering an inverted name form, users should consult the OVI Bibliography.
Users should note that in the OVI Bibliography the author is listed as Anonimo only in cases where the document is regarded as anonymous literary work. For all other genres of anonymous works, the author is listed as = (an equals sign). Entering anonimo in the Author field will thus retrieve only anonymous literary works; however, entering = will currently retrieve ALL the documents in the OVI database, not just those with the author listed as =. We are aware of this problem and are working on a solution.
Date: Use this field to specify texts to be included in the search according to the year of composition assigned to them by the Opera del Vocabolario Italiano. For example, entering 1265-1321 selects all texts assigned composition dates between these years. In addition to year ranges, you may limit the corpus to works composed in any individual year. For example, entering 1325 will select any works that have 1325 as their assigned date (but note that you cannot select multiple individual years by placing a comma between years; instead specify a range or conduct multiple searches). The OVI database includes documents dating from the ninth century though the beginning of the sixteenth century, with the majority of documents dated between 1200-1400.
The Opera del Vocabolario Italiano uses a complex scheme for assigning date codes to individual documents in order to describe as precisely as possible the state of knowledge regarding when the document was composed. For example, in some cases, the precise year of composition may be known, in other cases, it may be known that a document was definitely composed after a certain date but only probably before another date, etc. Unfortunately, it has thus far not been possible to take advantage of the richness of the OVI coding scheme for search purposes. Instead, the ItalNet implementation of the OVI database considers only the latest possible composition date assigned to a document when restricting the corpus by date or date range.
For example, the OVI has assigned the interval 1270-1300 as the probable dates of composition of Guido Cavalcanti's Rime. In this case the last year (1300) has been used by ItalNet for coding the document for search purposes. Thus, if one enters 1300 or a range such as 1299-1301 in the date field, the search results will include Cavalcante's Rime, but if one were to enter 1270 or 1265-1275 in the date field, the search results would not include this work.
Because of this search limitation, users are advised to consult the OVI Bibliography to verify which year ItalNet has assigned a given document for inclusion in date searches. Furthermore, users may wish to restrict the corpus by period rather than date in order to include a wider range of documents in the search corpus.
Specific and General Areas: Use this field to select texts according to the specific or general area of their origin. Both a general linguistic area (General Area), which usually corresponds to a geographic region in Italy (tosc. = toscano), and a specific linguistic area (Specific Area), which when possible coincides with the name of a city or town (fior. = fiorentino; sang. = sangimignanese) have been specified in the bibliographic data for each text in the database.
If there is insufficient data to attribute a specific linguistic type associated with a city or town, the Specific Area field simply repeats the data in the General Area field. For example, including tosc as the General Area results in a search for all Tuscan texts (264). On the other hand, including fior as the Specific Area results in a search for only Fiorentine texts (102). Yet, including tosc as the Specific Area searches for all Tuscan texts that were not able to be attributed to any specific Tuscan city or town (101).
In the bibliographic data for the Specific Area field one will occasionally find the following combined notations:
The character ">" (i.e. A>B) means that a text pertaining to the linguistic area A was copied by a scribe who modified it according to his own linguistic type B (patina linguistica).
The character "/" (slash) (i.e. A/B) indicates that the the document mixes in a certain sense the linguistic type A and the linguistic type B (mescidanza linguictica).
The character "-" (hyphen) (i.e. A-B) means that the language of the document constitutes a system that contains elements of both the linguistic type A and the linguistic type B (diasistema).
A comma (",") (i.e. A,B) indicates that the text was written partially in language A, partially in language B.
A question mark ("?") (i.e. A? or A/B?, etc.) means that the linguistic classification is uncertain.
These combined notations cannot be searched directly (e.g., one cannot enter A>B in the Specific Area field), but searching on either part of a combined notation will return documents that include that part in a combined notation (e.g. searching for A will return all instances of A A>B A-B etc.)
The collocation of the texts in specific and general linguistic areas is quite complex and the field contains more than one hundred general and specific linguistic areas. To determine which abbreviation(s) to include in your search, please consult:
Form: Use the single-letter abbreviations below to specify the following document forms: V = verse, P = prose, M = mixed (i.e., verse and prose). To specify more than one document form, include the vertical bar ( | ) "OR" operator between abbreviations; for example: V|P. Note that appropriate codes may be entered into both the "form" and "type" fields to obtain further precision; for example to restrict the search corpus to prose vulgarizations, enter P in the form field and V in the type field.
Genre: The Opera del Vocabolario has classified all documents in the database according to 22 genre categories. Please consult the table below for a complete list of these categories and their corresponding abbreviations. Note that these abbreviations must be entered exactly as the appear in the table (see the table for instructions and examples).
For a general instructions on formulating keyword search, please consult the PhiloLogic User Documentation. In addition to this general documentation, users of the OVI database should note the following points:
In creating this textual database, the Opera del Vocabolario Italiano mainly transcribed published editions of the source documents, as the user will note from the citations in the OVI bibliography. To enable the user to refer to these editions, ItalNet has included both page and line numbers in the display of search results. While the page numbers may be relied upon for the purposes of bibliographic citation, the user is cautioned that while great care was taken by the OVI in tagging line numbers in the original source documents and by ItalNet in translating those tags automatically for the purposes of HTML display, there may nevertheless be some inaccuracies and deviations from the published editions in some cases.
The Opera del Vocabolario Italiano markup of the original source documents distinguishes between "normal" text and textual components which are essentially non-textual in nature, such as arabic and Roman numerals. In the ItalNet implementation of the OVI database, these non-textual elements have not been indexed, with the result that they cannot be retrieved directly nor will they be counted as "words" for the purposes of proximity searching. They will nevertheless be displayed as normal text in the search results. The advantage of this system is that reduces the risk of retrieving irrelevant word forms when pattern-matching operators are employed.
In the same vein as the preceding point, the OVI markup distinguishes between the appearance of vernacular Italian and non-Italian language elements in the original source documents. In the ItalNet implementation of the OVI database, all of these elements are equally searchable. Yet in the display of search results, any non-Italian elements, such a Latin or French phrases, appear as underlined text.
The OVI markup of the original source documents identifies several classes of diacritical marks. To achieve consistency in keyword searching, ItalNet has observed the certain guidelines in creating document indexes and document displays. Due to the limitations of current Web browsers to display various kinds of specialized diacritical marks, common ASCII characters, such as the apostrophe/single quote character, have been used in some cases to represent not only punctuation marks but also breathing marks and other linguistic apparatus. In these cases, the ItalNet implementation of the OVI database has treated all occurrences of the character when used as a punctuation mark as a non-word-breaking, non-indexing entity (thus to find 'anastasio one would search for anastasio). Conversely, when the character has been used for any other purpose, it has been treated as a word-breaking, yet still non-indexing entity (thus to find oltr'a one would need search for either oltr or a; searching for oltr'a will yield no result. Other characters which have been treated in this manner include the hyphen (-) and the middot (·).
The OVI markup of the original source documents also employs brackets  and parentheses () to signal manuscript interpolations and other such textual apparatus. These are displayed according to their standard ASCII representations no matter where they may appear within a word, but their presence is ignored during document indexing. As a result, search for a term such as cinquantacinque will retrieve cinqua[n]tacinque, cinqua(n)tacinque, ci[n]quantaci[n]que and other similar forms.
For a general instructions on search options and document navigation please consult the PhiloLogic User Documentation. In the ItalNet implementation of the OVI database, the paragraph option for proximity searches has been disabled. Likewise, document navigation links in the search results displays for document headings and other organic textual references have been disabled due to copyright considerations. Nevertheless, users may view an entire page of a document by clicking on the page number links in the search results display.
The ARTFL Project Department of Romance Languages and Literatures Division of the Humanities University of Chicago 1115 East 58th Street Chicago, IL 60637 tel: 773-702-8488 | email: artfl[at]artfl[dot]uchicago[dot]edu