shots/contents.gifshots/index.gifshots/prev1.gifshots/next1.gif shots/home.jpg

Searching With Punctuation, Case and Abbreviations

Verity provides the following features for searching with punctuation, case and abbreviations/acronyms and for typos.


Always use double quotation marks to enclose terms that include unusual characters like the ampersand in H&S, apostrophy in worker's rights, hyphen in self-poisoning, and periods in 15.5% or dashes in a CAS Registry Number 7664-41-7.

To search by the proper or full chemical name, use double quotes, e.g. "1,1,1,-trichloroethane".

The Verity search engine automatically expands the search to include variations of the term with and without the unusual character. For example, this query finds documents that match H&S, H & S, and H S:

CASE Modifier

If you enter your search term completely in lower case or completely in upper case, Verity search engine looks for all mixed case variations. For example, both of the following queries will find documents that match stemmed variations of class, Class, and CLASS.


Searching for mixed case terms is case sensitive. If you are looking for proper names (such as Rose or Minister) or legal terms (such as Act or Table), enter the name with an initial capital letter. To make the search more precise, enclose the word in double quotation marks, as in the following example.


When you are searching for abbreviations or acronyms, case is important. For example, if you are looking for documents that refer to WHO (World Health Organization) use the CASE modifier and enter the search term in upper case.

In this example, the CASE modifier finds only the acronym WHO and eliminates documents that match who in lower case.


Most Verity Query Language operators and modifiers must be enclosed within angle brackets (< >) to distinguish them from the actual query term. The words AND , OR , and NOT are always treated as Verity Query Language operators unless they are enclosed within double quotation marks.

TYPO Operator

The TYPO operator can be useful if you are searching through documents that have been scanned which sometimes misreads words from the input document. The TYPO operator performs "approximate pattern matching" to identify words similar to the query term. The similar words can have characters inserted, deleted, or transposed.

For example, the following string finds documents that match either the word receive or the word recieve (the letters "e" and "i" have been transposed).


By default, the TYPO operator matches words with up to two character insertions, character deletions, or transpositions in any combination. The above sample query would find not only receive and recieve, but also receipt (the letters "v" and "e" have been replaced by "p" and "t"), deceive (the letter "r" has been replaced by the letter "d"), and decieve (the letter "r" has been replaced by the letter "d" and the letters "e" and "i" have been transposed).


The TYPO operator is also a good way to search through collections that contain documents written either in US or UK English.

For example, the following string finds documents that match either the word center or the word centre.

shots/contents.gifshots/index.gifshots/prev1.gifshots/next1.gif shots/home.jpg