Home My Europeana

Searching Europeana

Welcome to Europeana. This page describes some of the things that you can do while you are here. Learn more about:

  • Searching Europeana: Search tips, refined search, phrase search, exclude words, auto-completion, filter results, share your search.
  • Exploring Europeana: exhibitions, new content.
  • Results in Europeana: Seeing further details, rights and licence information, translating details, searching on external services, related searches on Europeana, viewing item on provider's site, embedding, and citing.
  • Using My Europeana: Saving searches, saving items, and adding tags.

General Search

Searching the millions of items in Europeana is simple. Just enter your search term and hit Search.

Specific search

You can narrow your search with the arrow to the right of Search All fields and selecting a category: Titles, Creators, Subjects, Dates/Periods, Places. Then enter your search term and hit Search.

Alternatively, just ask yourself who, what, where or when you are interested in and type these words into Europeana's search box followed by a colon (:). Then enter your search term and hit Search.

For specific searches, you could:

  • Use the Creator filter or enter who: followed by a name of, for example, an actor, author or architect. Your results will display only items for which the name you entered is listed as the creator. For example, searching for who: Vincent van Gogh will narrow your results to van Gogh's works, excluding photographs of the artist or documentaries about him and his work.
  • Use the Subject or Title filter or enter what: followed by a type of item, a subject you are interested in or words from the title of the item you are looking for. Your search results will display only items of the requested type or subject or items whose title includes your search term. For example, searching for what: maps will narrow your results to maps, or what: Art Nouveau will display artworks, buildings and monuments done in the Art Nouveau style.
  • Use the Place filter or enter where: followed by a name of a town, city or country within Europe or around the world. Your search results will display only items which were created in, published in or depict the place you are searching for. For example, searching for where: Milan will help you differentiate your search when you are looking only for objects created or held in Milan, excluding items on writer Milan Kundera from your search results.
  • Use the Date filter or enter when: followed by a date (e.g. 1945) or a period (e.g. Roman or Medieval). Your search results will display only items for which the date is listed in the item's date field. For example, searching for when: 1984 will help you differentiate your search when you are looking only for items dated 1984, excluding items that have 1984 in their title or description, like George Orwell's novel.

These search functions also have support for different spellings and languages. For example, when you search for where: Milan, the results will also include items with Milano, Mailand or Milanas listed as their geographic coverage.

Phrase search

Phrase search is also possible. Just put quotation marks (e.g. “art nouveau”) around the phrase you want to find, or type AND between the keywords (e.g. art AND nouveau).

Exclude words by typing NOT in capital letters, followed by the word you want to omit (e.g. Auguste NOT Renoir)

Another helpful search feature is Auto completion. Start typing a search term. Europeana will suggest words that may match what you are thinking of. Just select the term you want and hit Search

Refine your search

Once you have done an initial search, results can be narrowed down with the Refine your search functions. These are in the grey pane on the search results screen. You can add more keywords to your search, thereby narrowing the search results. Just type your keyword into the Add more keywords field and hit + Add. The keyword is displayed at the top of the pane, under Matches for.

To remove a keyword, hit the X icon next to the relevant keyword in the Matches for list.

You can also filter your search results:

  • By media type - will display only objects of a selected media type (images, text, video, sound or 3D).
  • By language - will display only objects with descriptions in selected languages, i.e. the language of the institution that provided the object to Europeana.
  • By date - will display only objects with selected dates.
  • By country - will display only objects from selected countries, i.e. the country of the institution that provided the object to Europeana.
  • By copyright – will display objects labelled with the selected copyright label(s). This copyright label indicates how you may reuse the digital object, including the preview.
  • By provider - will display only objects from selected institutions

Select the filter name, e.g. 'By language' to expand it. Then just use the check boxes for the categories you wish the search results to include. The results will refresh automatically. The filter will be added to the Matches for list at the top of the pane.

To remove a filter, hit the X icon next to the item in the Matches for list, or de-select the check box next to the filter category.

You can also select to Include content contributed by users. This means items that have not come from a cultural institution but from an individual user, for example, items contributed to the Europeana 1914-1918 project.

Share your search with friends by choosing Share. A full list of social media sharing options is presented. Just select one you want. This also includes print and email options.

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