Important Abbreviations

Library of Congress Headings use a number of important abbreviations which help catalogers navigate through the lists.  The most important abbreviations are listed below.

USE: This is an indicator that the term just listed is not to be used as a valid subject heading. Instead, the term listed after USE should be the chosen heading. In addition, the term listed before USE (not a valid heading) is printed in regular type, and the term after USE (valid heading) is printed in bold type.  In the example of Boston below, the USE abbreviation indicates that rather than using "Description" the cataloger should use "Description and travel."

Boston (Mass.)
     — Description
              USE Boston (Mass.)—Description and
    — Description and travel
             UF Boston (Mass.)—Description
                      [Former heading]

UF: This stands for ‘used for’, the opposite of USE. The term listed before UF is the chosen heading term. The one listed after UF is not a valid term for a heading.  In the example above, the UF abbreviation under "Description and travel" shows that this subheading is used rather than "Description."

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