Re: Alphabetizing Surnames

Subject: Re: Alphabetizing Surnames
From: AlQuin <cbon -at- WXS -dot- NL>
Date: Fri, 11 Dec 1998 16:32:19 +0100

On 10-12-1998 23:36 Tracy Boyington wrote:

>> I wholeheartedly agree with Diane Plassey Gutierrez, who said:
>> <<snip>> ***Just ask the person the preferred format of her name.*** >
>A great idea when it's possible, but I would also suggest coming up with
>some rule of thumb to use when asking is not an option.
>> If you can't, I'd vote for using both names as the last name, even without
>> a hyphen (as in Booth Luce, Claire).
>I picked her as an example because I was once looking for something
>she'd written under her maiden name, Booth, and the card catalog (yes,
>it was that long ago) said to look under Luce (I remember it because it
>annoyed me that they would wipe out the work she did under her maiden
>name, but that's another story). So it appears that, at least as far as
>your local library is concerned, the final name is the last name when
>there are no hyphens.

>Don't we have some indexing experts on this list? I'd like to hear their

According to ALA and AACR rules you may keep these rules:
1. Arrange a name with a prefix as one word., i.e., de, du, van, von.
Initial articles, el, de, etc., are treated as a prefix when part of a
name in all languages and are thus filed on.
Compound names without a hyphen are filed as separate words.

2. Surnames, forenames, corporate, and place names are interfiled and
arranged as stated in Rule 1. The arrangement of names will be as
follows: (1) Initials alone precede all surnames beginning with the same
letters. Initials are treated as though they form a word; (2) Surnames
only or forename only; (3) Surname and/or forename followed only by
initials (the initials precede all first names, etc., beginning with the
same letters); (4) Surname followed by forename; (5) Headings with dates,
when used; (6) Roman numerals following names of kings and the like are
ignored in alphabetizing, except when they are needed to distinguish
between two like entries; (7) Corporate entries (institutions,
organizations, societies, etc.) are to be arranged in the same way as
those for personal headings and interfiled; (8) Compound names are
interfiled disregarding punctuation, as one word if hyphenated, or as
separate words if not; (9) Surnames followed only by appellative or
designations are interfiled as in Rule 1.

3. In heading of noblemen, popes, and sovereigns, disregard epithets such
as "the Conqueror," "the Great," "the Bold," "the German," etc., when
they come between the name and designation.

4. Within a heading, treat each part of a compound proper name, including
articles, prepositions, and conjunctions, as a separate word, with the
exception of prefixes in 3, point 1 and elisions.

ALA = American Library Assn
AACR = Anglo-American Cataloguing Rules
References: ALA filing rules, by the Filing Committee, Resources and
Technical Services Division, American Library Association, Chicago:
American Library Association, 1980. (LC# Z695.95.A52)

The main problem - also in these rules is what to distinguish being the
surname and what being a person's given name.

From my librarian practice I would say in the Frank Ngui Hon Sang case:
Ngui Hon Sang, Frank, since Chinese family names have to be read from
general to personal in the given sequence.

In the other cases I would advice:
Gibson-Payne, Janice, for Janice Gibson-Payne
Booth Luce, Claire, for doubts like Claire Booth Luce, until it is CLEAR
Booth is part of her given name...

Hope it helps,

Kees de Bondt

AlQuin Total Quality
Amstelveen, Home of CoBrA - NL
e-mail: cbon -at- wxs -dot- nl ph/fx +31.20.6450976 The Quality Homepage

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