About Qcat

The Q-catalogue provides a global registry of cuneiform compositions, complementing CDLI's P-catalogue of inscribed objects. It is not yet complete but is being constructed incrementally according to the needs of Oracc projects. If your project needs Q-numbers that are not yet in this catalogue, or you notice errors that need correcting, please email us at osc@camtools.cam.ac.uk.

This page documents the various fields in the Q-catalogue, in order to help users to search it, and to provide Qcat editors with rules and guidelines for content creation. If you are new to Oracc you may also find it helpful to read the general documentation page on searching the Oracc corpora.

Character set

Entries in the Qcat are made with the Unicode UTF-8 character set, with the following transcription conventions:

but users can search for aleph, š, and Š, ṣ and Ṣ, and ṭ and Ṭ, by typing ' (apostrophe), sz and SZ (not Sz); s, (s comma) and S, (S-comma), and t, (t comma) and T, (t comma) respectively in the search box (see searching the Oracc corpora for more information).

Core fields

The automatically generated Q-number. A unique Q-number is assigned to each composition, or each standard tablet of a longer composition. For instance, Q002715 is the Q-number for Mul-Apin 1.

The prose equivalent of the id_composite, i.e., what is displayed when you look up the q-number. Each designation maximally comprises [Period] [Place] [Series] [Series Section] or, for royal inscriptions, [Ruler] [Series Section]. Each word has an initial capital, and numbering (always Arabic, never Roman) uses initial zeroes where necessary. Periods must be selected from the abbreviations in this control list. For instance, OB Nippur Ura 03 (= Q000001) or Šulgi 94 (= Q001725). Designations such as Šurpu Varia (= Q003047) are used for pieces that can be assigned to a composition but not situated exactly within it.

When new entries are added to the Qcat, the designation is generated computationally from [Period] [Place] [Series] [Series Section] but can then be edited as necessary.

When the composition comes from (e.g, Ur III for the royal inscription Šulgi 94). Should be the unabbreviated equivalent of the "period" part of the designation field, if used there. Entries must be selected from this control list.
Designates the place associated with a composition, if appropriate (e.g., Lagaš for royal inscriptions from Lagaš). Must be identical to the "place" part of the designation field, if used there. Entries must be selected from this control list, which may be added to. Where a place occurs in the CDLI main catalogue of P-numbers, that name is used; otherwise ancient names are preferred over modern ones.
The series to which the composition belongs (e.g., Ura) or the ruler who commissioned the royal inscription (e.g., Šulgi).
series section
The number (or letter) of the composition/royal inscription in the series (e.g., A for Izi A; 94 for Šulgi 94.
Some series are divided into subseries; this field gives the name of the subseries (eg., Šumma Pan Takalti, a subseries of Barutu).
subseries section
The number (or letter) of the composition in the subseries (e.g., 07 for Šumma Pan Takalti 07).

Further fields describing the composition

A general descriptive term for the type of composition (e.g, Royal Inscription or Omen. Entries must be selected from this control list.
Used as needed in conjunction with the genre field (e.g., an Astrological omen).
Exemplars associated with the composite may be given in this field, either as P-numbers (preferred where they have been assigned) or as museum numbers or other identifiers where no P-number has yet been assigned. This is a convenience field for incremental catalogue-building which is intended to supplement Oracc's automated harvesting of exemplars.
The places where manuscripts (tablets) of a composition are attested. The contents of this field are generated computationally from the P-catalogue and are not editable by hand.
The periods in which the composition is attested, as opposed to the period. For instance, Early Dynastic Plants (Q000020) is attested in the Early Dynastic, Ur III, and Old Babylonian periods. The contents of this field are generated computationally from the P-catalogue and are not editable by hand.

Bibliographical fields

The standard publication of the composition, whether online or in print (typically the most recent, rather than the first). Contains one entry only, which may be a stable URL. Abbreviations for print publications follow CDLI conventions. URLs should be given in the Wiki-style syntax [URL TEXT], where TEXT gives the text which is displayed to the user when the link is rendered, e.g., [http://etcsl.orinst.ox.ac.uk/cgi-bin/etcsl.cgi?text=c.0.1.1&display=Crit&charenc=gcirc ETCSL 0.1.1]
Other major treatments of the composition, whether online or in print. May include stable URLs. Abbreviations for print publications follow CDLI conventions. Entries are separated by a semi-colon and a space.
Other standard identifying labels, such as those used by RIM and ETCSL (e.g. etcsl:2.1.1). The source is given first, followed by a colon and then the siglum. Spaces are not permitted, so editors must use underscores if needed. Multiple entries are separated by a semi-colon and a space (e.g., etcsl:; rim:E3/
Any other name(s) by which a composition is commonly known, to aid searching, but not displayed by default.

Finding aids

One or more descriptive terms that help to group or organise compositions, or that briefly indicate their contents, separated by semi-colons (e.g., Reeds; Vessels; Leather; Metals for OB Nippur Ura 02 or Šu-Enlil; Uruk for Šulgi 94).
An optional prose description of the contents of the composition or series.

Catalogue management fields

These fields are primarily for the Qcat editors' use and will not be very interesting to Oracc users.

Entries must comprise one of two values: active (the default) or deleted. Deleted Q-numbers are no longer in use. If the Q-number has been replaced or superceded by another, the new_q field must also be completed.
Contains any new Q-number(s) that supercede or replace a deleted Q.
For the Qcat editors' use.
These fields are all generated automatically by the software and are not editable by hand.

ER, 22 August 2010