Verbum 9 Tip 8k: Search functions: Inline search: search argument - text search terms

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Search argument

The Search argument for a inline search is the same as the search argument for a panel search. A search argument is simply a string of search terms strung together with operators between them. One builds them and breaks them apart by recognizing the smaller units. A search term is the item that is search for to return a present or not present result. The search term types available in Verbum are:

Term type




Search actual text

Text term: word

May include wildcards


Simple text consisting of a single word; may be subject to stemming for alternative forms.

Text term: phrase

May include wildcards


One or more words of text enclosed in quotation marks to be treated as a phrase.

Language term modifier+ term



Standard form: language – colon – search term
([lang language-code]term)

Search field term modifier+ term



Standard form: field name – colon – search term


([field field-name]term)

Mark sensitivity term modifier+ term



Standard form: [match rule] term

Search Faithlife tagging


Abbreviated forms depend upon datatype


Standard form: <datatype name – operator – datatype value>

Extended datatype form 1






Standard form: {Extension type <datatype name – operator – datatype value>}

Extended datatype form 2




Standard form: {Extension type  Text term}

No wildcards; precise matches

Extended datatype form 3



Label (see below)


Standard form: {Extension type – Extension specifier <datatype name – operator – datatype value>}

Morphology datatype elements



@ in Morph search will bring up selection panels

Label (complex datatype)



Standard form: {Label label-name WHERE attribute 1 – operator – simple search term}

Compound search term

Two or more search terms joined by an operator – logical, proximity, …




For the purposes of the next group of examples, Schönborn, Christoph, ed. Youcat English: Youth Catechism of the Catholic Church. Translated by Michael J. Miller. San Francisco: Ignatius Press, 2011 will be used. Initially, the three universal search options are set as shown below:

P25-1 Panel Menu Options

Text term: word

For a simple text term one can simply enter the plain text. With “Match all word forms” set, weigh should include weighs, weighed, weighing. . .

P25-2 Single Word

The only result is “weighed” showing us that the “Match all word forms” worked. However, the stemming routine is limited in the forms that it shows. In this case, the concordance shows us that “weighty” and “weightlessness” also appear in the text but are not treated as forms of weight.

P25-3 Concordance Weight

In this case, the “weigh” portion does not change (compare sing, sang, sung) so that a Find can also be used to verify that the “match all word forms” is complete. Yes, you have to click through them. Find shows one result at a time.

P25-4 Find Weight

If the “Match all word form” is turned off, no results are returned as the word “weigh” does not appear in this form in the text.

P25-5 No All Forms

Other languages, diacriticals, etc. will be dealt with after phrases.

Text term: phrase

If one simply puts three words into the Search box, the Verbum will assume that they constitute a list of three terms joined together by logical AND’s as implied by the space between them. It will then search for articles (in a Basic search) that contain all three words. This yields in 466 results in 21 articles in which the words appear in any sequence, any number of times, with any number of intervening words between them.

P25-6 Simple List

To request the three words in the order given with no intervening words, put the three words within quotation marks. This converts it to a single search term, a phrase. There are now only two results:

P25-7 Phrase

As a rule of thumb, the search ignores punctuation. While the text reads “faith, hope, love”, the search argument reads “faith hope love” to avoid confusing the commas with the OR element of a list. When one generates the search from the context menu, it is generated with the commas. It has no effect on the results.

P25-8 Context Menu

This generates this search:

P25-9 Generated Search

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