Graphic Materials Cataloging

General Policies | Notes | Access Points

General policies

Published graphic materials for the Beinecke Library which receive original cataloging are cataloged according to the latest full national standards for descriptive cataloging. The national standards are set forth in Graphic Materials: Rules for Describing Original Items and Historical Collections (1982 printing with updates) and the latest revision of Anglo-American Cataloguing Rules, 2nd ed., commonly known as AACR2, as interpreted by the Library of Congress rule interpretations. The latest editions of AACR2, the Library of Congress rule interpretations and the Graphic Materials cataloging manual are all available through Cataloger's Desktop.

A word about the differences between Chapter 8 of AACR2, also called Graphic Materials, and Graphic Materials, the cataloging manual: in the words of the manual, Chapter 8 focuses on “commercially-produced audiovisual materials, published and/or documented artists’ prints and photographs, portfolios and reproductions accompanied by printed information.” The Graphic Materials cataloging manual, however, “not only augments the original rules found in Chapter 8, but it also departs from that base in several instances in an effort to meet the requirements for cataloging original and historical graphic materials” so Graphic Materials: Rules for Describing Original Items and Historical Collections is the Rare Book Team’s default cataloging manual.


Graphic Materials includes, among other things, a glossary, examples of catalog records (some with illustrations of the works cataloged), a concordance matching up Graphic Materials rules and MARC 21 fields (clickable, of course, in the online version) and examples of MARC records for graphic materials.

The main differences between a MARC record for graphic materials and MARC records for other formats are to be found in the leader, the 007 and the 008 of the fixed, or variable control, fields and, among the variable data fields, in the 040, the 245 and the 300.

Variable control fields

In the leader field, the Type of Record will be: k, Two-dimensional non-projectable graphic. (Graphic Materials also covers projected graphics such as transparencies, slides and negatives but the type of graphic discussed here will be the non-projectable graphic.)

leader image

The 007 field is utilized and Nonprojected Graphic is checked and filled in to provide information on: Specific Material Designation, Color, Primary Support Material (and, if applicable, Secondary Support Material).

007 image

The more general 008 field is also filled in and the key section for non-projected graphic materials is: Type of material. (Most of the other sections in this field refer to projected graphic materials such as motion pictures or videorecordings and are not applicable to non-projected graphics.)

008 image

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Variable data fields

The 040 field contains the subfield e with the cataloging source code: gihc.

040     ‡a CtY-BR ‡c CtY-BR ‡e gihc

The 245 field may contain the GMD (general material designation), “graphic”, in a subfield h immediately following the subfield a. The word ‘graphic’ is always bracketed. The use of the GMD is optional but the Rare Book Team will use it.

245 1 4 ‡a The drummer boy of our regiment ‡h [graphic] : ‡b eight war scenes.

The 300 field:

300     ‡a 1 print : ‡b silkscreen, printed in black ; ‡c image 58 x 54 cm., on sheet 78 x 57 cm.

The 520 field is often used to describe the visual details of the image[s] being cataloged.

520     ‡a A cupid is pictured sitting on a wall, opening the door of a wooden cage and releasing a flock of doves into the air; each dove flies away to deliver the envelope it carries on a ribbon around its neck.

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Form of notes

Copy specific notes are made to record important information pertaining to individual copies but not to all copies. This information is often noted on the accompanying accessions slip. Information about provenance evidence, imperfections, and bindings (including bound-with information) pertaining to the copy in hand but not to all copies is recorded in copy specific notes.

Restriction on access notes (506) precede copy specific notes (590). All other notes follow. Restriction on access notes (506) and copy specific notes (590) always begin with BEIN [call no.]: Line-breaks in call numbers are indicated by spaces.

If the copy specific information is not extensive, a single 590 note per copy suffices. For clarity's sake, several copy specific notes for the same copy may be made, each beginning with BEIN [call no.]. This is the case with long runs of serials with issues which have come from numerous sources with various provenance. In general note the copy specific information in the order given below.


590     ‡a BEIN Zc56 893ra: Autograph and manuscript notes of Herbert Thomas Ackcoll. Original wrappers.

Following is a list of notes. Use as appropriate. Some may never be used.

Order of notes

Restriction on access
Copy Specific Notes
Bibliographical variants (590 in combination with 500)
Imperfections (590)
Copy number of limited edition (590)
Original wrappers, Paperbound, Spiral-bound or Stapled (590) (N.B. read carefully)
Dust jacket (590)
Belly band (590)
Uncut [i.e. untrimmed; not to be confused with unopened] (590)
Provenance (590)
Binding information (590)
Bound-with notes(590)
In case with notes (590)
Manuscript material in printed works (590)
Material shelved separately (590)
General Notes
Bibliographical variants (500 sometimes in combination with 590)
Limited edition notes (500 sometimes in combination with 590)
Signatures (500) (Rarely used)
Issued in case (500)
Added engraved title page (500) (Rarely used)
Illustrated title page (500)
Citations of standard bibliographies (510)
Advertising matter (500 or 590)
Summary note (520)
Local Processing Notes
Local processing notes (‡x in MFHD)

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Access Points

Name and Title Access Points (1xx, 246, 7xx)
All name and title access points required by the latest national standards are made. Additional name access points may be made to bring out contributors and contents of the item which are deemed important to the collections being cataloged. Generous title access and access for illustrators, engravers, and on occasion, printers and publishers, is made.
Library of Congress Subject Headings (6xx)
For items receiving full-level cataloging, subject headings are assigned according to the latest edition of LC Subject Headings and the LC Subject Cataloging Manual. For graphic materials, catalogers should include subject heading(s) with the form subdivision Pictorial works:
650   0 ‡a [Subject] ‡v Pictorial works.
651   0 ‡a [Geographical subject heading] ‡v Pictorial works.

650   0 ‡a Gypsies ‡v Pictorial works.
651   0 ‡a Cincinnati (Ohio) ‡v Pictorial works.

There are several standard thesauri that can be used for graphic material. All of these can be, and have been used, in Yale catalog records.

  1. The Library of Congress Thesaurus for Graphic Materials (TGM) (‡2 lctgm and/or ‡2 gmgpc)

    “The Thesaurus for Graphic Materials is a tool for indexing visual materials by subject and by genre/format. The thesaurus includes more than 7,000 subject terms and 650 genre/format terms to index types of photographs, prints, design drawings, ephemera, and other pictures.”
    The Thesaurus for Graphic Materials contains terms for both subject and form/genre.  For subject access, generally prefer LCSH terms over TGM terms.  The “notes” field for the term will indicate if the term can be used as both subject and form/genre (MARC 650 & 655) or just subject (MARC 650).  Use MARC subfield 2 lctgm for subject terms (MARC 650 _7) and subfield 2 gmgpc for form/genre terms (MARC 655 _7)

  2. Art and Architecture Thesaurus (AAT) (‡2 aat)

    "The AAT is a structured vocabulary currently containing around 131,000 terms and other information about concepts. Terms in AAT may be used to describe art, architecture, decorative arts, material culture, and archival materials … Terms for any concept may include the plural form of the term, singular form, natural order, inverted order, spelling variants, various forms of speech, and synonyms that have various etymological roots. Among these terms, one is flagged as the preferred term, or descriptor. "

In cataloging graphic materials, TGM will be the default thesaurus for form/genre terms. If a needed term is not found in TGM, a term from AAT can be used, if one exists. We will use TGM for subject access only in extraordinary circumstances.

650   7 ‡a Clothing & dress. ‡2 lctgm

655   7 ‡a Etchings ‡z England ‡z London ‡y 1776. ‡2 gmgpc

655   7 ‡a Interior views. ‡2 aat

Other Access Points, including Form and Genre Headings

Certain form and genre terms are always added when called for by local practice . Other applicable standard form and genre terms may be added on a case by case basis when this does not slow down cataloging productivity and are generally retained if present in copy.

Local Tracings

In addition to all applicable standard LC subject headings, local tracings for provenance, chronology, binding and imprint are made when called for by local policies.

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Below is an example of a fully cataloged graphic materials record:

000 01173ckm 2200253 a 450
001 6425128
005 20051006110758.0
007 kjobo
008 031031s1854 cau kneng d
035      ‡a 6425128
040     ‡a CtY-BR ‡c CtY-BR ‡e gihc
043     ‡a n-us-hi
100 1   ‡a Emmert, Paul.
245 1 0 ‡a View of Honolulu ‡h [graphic] / ‡c drawn on stone by G.H. Burgess ; sketched from nature by Paul Emmert.
260     ‡a [San Francisco] : ‡b Published by Paul Emmert, ‡c c1854 ‡e ([San Francisco] : ‡f Lith. of Britton & Rey)
300     ‡a 6 prints : ‡b lithograph, b&w ; ‡c 63 x 88 cm.
590     ‡a BEIN 2003 Folio 93: Bookplate of Paul Mellon.
500     ‡a Statements of responsibility from no. 1; date from nos. 2-6.
500     ‡a Lithographs printed in black on a pale tan-colored ground; white highlights.
505 1   ‡a no. 1. From the harbor -- no. 2. From the Catholic church -- no. 3. From the Catholic church -- no. 4. From the Catholic church -- no. 5. From the Catholic church -- no. 6. From the Catholic church.
651   0 ‡a Honolulu (Hawaii) ‡v Pictorial works.
692 1 4 ‡a Mellon, Paul ‡x Bookplate.
700 1   ‡a Burgess, George Henry, ‡d 1831-1905.
710 2   ‡a Britton & Rey.
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