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Definition and notes


A person who received books on another client’s behalf in their end destination.


The term is used in this project to refer to anyone who had an identifiable authorial function whether as writer of all or part of a work or anthology; or as editor or translator. It is possible, however, to limit author searches in the database to cases where an author served as ‘primary author’, ‘secondary author’, ‘editor’ or translator’.


Science of or research methodology based upon counting books.


Is usually used in this project to refer to a single copy any work, whether single or multi-volume. Such ‘books’ were the basic unit of trade for the STN. This means that a ‘book’ might consist of several different physical books in the sense of bound or unbound volumes.


Bibliothèque publique et universitaire de Neuchâtel

C18 Lower Territory

Provinces into which sovereign states are divided in this project (in smaller states lower territory and sovereign territory may be the same). Borders used are post 1772 Europe. For more on mapping consult our designer notes.

C18 Sovereign Territory

The main political divisions (countries) used in this project, equating to eighteenth century states. Borders used are post 1772 Europe. (NB in some cases large non-contiguous empires e.g. Prussia, the Austrian empire, have been broken up – eg. Prussia has separate regions called Prussia: Cleves and Prussia: Neuchâtel. But it is possible to browse these multi-part states using the browse other place groupings menu). For more on mapping consult our designer notes.


A person or corporate entity known to be in contact with the STN, whether as one of their correspondents; the intended recipient of the STN’s own letters; or as a person known through the archive to have handled, despatched or received books traded with the STN.


Someone who sent letters to the STN and whose correspondence survives in the STN archive.

Corresponding Client

Same as correspondent.

Economic Sector

Analytical grouping of related occupations by industrial sector developed for this project. For more details consult the designer notes.

Edition type

Categorisation of editions in terms of place of origin (and in case of STN publisher). See ‘edition type’ options menu and our designer notes for more details.


French Book Trade in Enlightenment Europe [project]


A publishing format describing the largest standard size of book. A folio work was comprised of standard printers sheets [q.v.] of paper that had only been folded once (thus creating 2 leaves / 4 sides per sheet).

Geographic Zone

Large geo-political units developed to aid project mapping and analysis – for more details consult our designer notes.

in-4o, in-8o, in-12o, in-20o, in-24o

Standard publishing and bibliographic abbreviations for the book formats quarto, octavo, duodecimo etc.. The format describes the physical size of the book in relation to the size of the standard sheets [q.v.] used by printers. A folio edition involved a sheet being folded once (thus creating 2 leaves or four sides per sheet); quarto involved two folds (4 leaves / 8 sides); octavo three folds (8 leaves / 16 sides).

‘Languages’ [in menu]

Refers to the language(s) in which a particular edition of a work is printed.


A person or business handling books on the trade route between the STN and their end destination.

Named Person

An identifiable individual whose names is associated with a client. As clients may be corporate bodies (including partnerships), some clients include multiple named individuals.

Original Languages

Refers to the language in which a work (superbook) was originally published, rather than the language of a particular edition. (NB. We have not tried to attribute ‘original languages’ to scriptural works.

Parisian category (occasionally may be referred to as Parisian keyword)

Refers to the (single) category attributed to a given superbook or group of superbooks under the Parisian system. For more information see designer notes.

Principal Client

The person who ordered or supplied a set of books, as opposed to the ‘Agent’ or ‘Middleman’

Profession Group

Analytical grouping of related occupations by activity developed for this project. For more details consult the designer notes.


Large standard size pieces of paper used for printing books. The format of a book depended on how many times the sheets were folded (and if necessary cut) to form a work. Eighteenth Century booksellers tended to trade works unbound and uncut, swapping and accounting for their wares among themselves by the sheet. This means that in some cases it is possible to identify editions by the number of sheets of which they were composed. For this reason, where possible we record page and in some cases sheet information in the database.


Société typographique


Société typographique de Neuchâtel


Used to refer to a single ‘work’ and all editions thereof. A superbook might therefore be thought of as a container of all editions of a work. For more details see the designer notes.

Trading Client

Any client of the STN who exchanged books with them, whether as a supplier or recipient or both