English and American Literature: Proximity Searching

Proximity Searching

Proximity searching is a search method that allows you to specify how close one word or phrase that you enter in your search should be to another word or phrase in the texts retrieved by your search.

For example, a search for 
Galileo [Proximity Operator]5 Inquisition 
will retrieve all texts in which the word “Galileo” occurs within 5 words of the word “Inquisition.” Such as:
“In 1624-25, as in 1615, Galileo was denounced to the Inquisition for avowing a heretical doctrine.”

Different database publishers make use of different proximity operators. Please consult this table to see which proximity operators to use for which database publishers.

The link to this table will be accessible to anyone with LIONMail. If you don't have LIONMail or have trouble accessing the table for any reason, please email me at jt628@columbia.edu, and I will send you a copy as an attachment.