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HathiTrust Digital Library

HathiTrust is a partnership of academic & research institutions, offering a collection of millions of titles digitized from libraries around the world.

Searching the HathiTrust Digital Library

Hathi offers two basic ways to search its content:

  1. a traditional Catalog search, ideal for known items (by author, title, etc. - listed in the fields tab)
  2. a Full-text search, which searches across the full-text of every item within Hathi

Catalog search (by title, author, etc.)

By unchecking the Full view only box above, you can search all of Hathi's content (including limited view search-only titles).

Full-text search

HathiTrust offers full-text search across all items in the repository (including public domain and in copyright works).  By unchecking the Full view only box above, you can search all of Hathi's content (including limited view search-only titles).

Search results & tips

Facets and the Catalog record

Use the many facets on the left of your set of search results to further refine and narrow your search.  The Catalog record link of any particular title will lead you to a fuller description of the item and to options for bibliographic citation.

All items vs. "full view"

Hathi search results will include the above tab options to allow you to view all items resulting from your search, or to focus only on those titles whose content is entirely viewable and downloadable.  Click on "Full view" for these titles to view the book.

Why does Hathi include so many limited-view titles? 

Millions of in-copyright books have been digitized by HathiTrust primarily for long-term digital preservation, with the expectation of eventual access upon copyright expiration.  Within the Hathi database, these titles are labeled as "Limited (search only)" and are not normally viewable.  They can be utilized for certain fair use research purposes.   One can search the full text of an in-copyright book within Hathi to determine how many times a particular term occurs in the text, for instance, and perform other text mining functions. 

Why can't I see the full text of every title?

Books that are still in copyright are not fully viewable to users as Hathi both respects and adheres to U.S. and international copyright law.  Hathi does enable access to in-copyright titles under certain circumstances, such as to patrons with print disabilities.

Further tips for searching