Dewey Decimal Classification

The Dewey Decimal Classification (DDC), colloquially the Dewey Decimal System, is a proprietary library classification system first published in the United States by Melvil Dewey in 1876.[1] Originally described in a four-page pamphlet, it has been expanded to multiple volumes and revised through 23 major editions, the latest printed in 2011. It is also available in an abridged version suitable for smaller libraries. OCLC, a non-profit cooperative that serves libraries, currently maintains the system and licenses online access to WebDewey, a continuously updated version for catalogers.

The Decimal Classification introduced the concepts of relative location and relative index which allow new books to be added to a library in their appropriate location based on subject. Libraries previously had given books permanent shelf locations that were related to the order of acquisition rather than topic. The classification's notation makes use of three-digit Arabic numerals for main classes, with fractional decimals allowing expansion for further detail. Using Arabic numerals for symbols, it is flexible to the degree that numbers can be expanded in linear fashion to cover special aspects of general subjects.[2] A library assigns a classification number that unambiguously locates a particular volume in a position relative to other books in the library, on the basis of its subject. The number makes it possible to find any book and to return it to its proper place on the library shelves.[notes 1] The classification system is used in 200,000 libraries in at least 135 countries.[3][4]

HK Wan Chai Library Inside Bookcase a
Books classified by the Dewey Decimal System in a Hong Kong library


Melvil Dewey 1891
Melvil Dewey, the inventor of the Dewey Decimal classification

1873–1885: Early development

Melvil Dewey (1851–1931) was an American librarian and self-declared reformer.[5] He was a founding member of the American Library Association and can be credited with the promotion of card systems in libraries and business.[6] He developed the ideas for his library classification system in 1873 while working at Amherst College library. He applied the classification to the books in that library, until in 1876 he had a first version of the classification. In 1876, he published the classification in pamphlet form with the title A Classification and Subject Index for Cataloguing and Arranging the Books and Pamphlets of a Library.[7] He used the pamphlet, published in more than one version during the year, to solicit comments from other librarians. It is not known who received copies or how many commented as only one copy with comments has survived, that of Ernest Cushing Richardson.[8] His classification system was mentioned in an article in the first issue of the Library Journal and in an article by Dewey in the Department of Education publication "Public Libraries in America" in 1876.[9] In March 1876, he applied for, and received copyright on the first edition of the index.[10] The edition was 44 pages in length, with 2,000 index entries, and was printed in 200 copies.[11]

1885–1942: Period of adoption

The second edition of the Dewey Decimal system, published in 1885 with the title Decimal Classification and Relativ Index for arranging, cataloging, and indexing public and private libraries and for pamflets, clippings, notes, scrap books, index rerums, etc.,[notes 2] comprised 314 pages, with 10,000 index entries. Five hundred copies were produced.[11] Editions 3–14, published between 1888 and 1942, used a variant of this same title.[12] Dewey modified and expanded his system considerably for the second edition. In an introduction to that edition Dewey states that "nearly 100 persons hav [spelling of 'have' per English-language spelling reform, which Dewey championed] contributed criticisms and suggestions".[13]

One of the innovations of the Dewey Decimal system was that of positioning books on the shelves in relation to other books on similar topics. When the system was first introduced, most libraries in the US used fixed positioning: each book was assigned a permanent shelf position based on the book's height and date of acquisition.[14] Library stacks were generally closed to all but the most privileged patrons, so shelf browsing was not considered of importance. The use of the Dewey Decimal system increased during the early 20th century as librarians were convinced of the advantages of relative positioning and of open shelf access for patrons.[14]

New editions were readied as supplies of previously published editions were exhausted, even though some editions provided little change from the previous, as they were primarily needed to fulfill demand.[15] In the next decade, three editions followed closely on: the 3rd (1888), 4th (1891), and 5th (1894). Editions 6 through 11 were published from 1899 to 1922. The 6th edition was published in a record 7,600 copies, although subsequent editions were much lower. During this time, the size of the volume grew, and edition 12 swelled to 1243 pages, an increase of 25% over the previous edition.[16]

In response to the needs of smaller libraries which were finding the expanded classification schedules difficult to use, in 1894, the first abridged edition of the Dewey Decimal system was produced.[14] The abridged edition generally parallels the full edition, and has been developed for most full editions since that date. By popular request, in 1930, the Library of Congress began to print Dewey Classification numbers on nearly all of its cards, thus making the system immediately available to all libraries making use of the Library of Congress card sets.[17]

Dewey's was not the only library classification available, although it was the most complete. Charles Ammi Cutter published the Expansive Classification in 1882, with initial encouragement from Melvil Dewey. Cutter's system was not adopted by many libraries, with one major exception: it was used as the basis for the Library of Congress Classification system.[18]

In 1895, the International Institute of Bibliography, located in Belgium and led by Paul Otlet, contacted Dewey about the possibility of translating the classification into French, and using the classification system for bibliographies (as opposed to its use for books in libraries). This would have required some changes to the classification, which was under copyright. Dewey gave permission for the creation of a version intended for bibliographies, and also for its translation into French. Dewey did not agree, however, to allow the International Institute of Bibliography to later create an English version of the resulting classification, considering that a violation of their agreement, as well as a violation of Dewey's copyright. Shortly after Dewey's death in 1931, however, an agreement was reached between the committee overseeing the development of the Decimal Classification and the developers of the French Classification Decimal. The English version was published as the Universal Decimal Classification and is still in use today.[19]

According to a study done in 1927, the Dewey system was used in the US in approximately 96% of responding public libraries and 89% of the college libraries.[20] After the death of Melvil Dewey in 1931, administration of the classification was under the Decimal Classification Committee of the Lake Placid Club Education Foundation, and the editorial body was the Decimal Classification Editorial Policy Committee with participation of the American Library Association (ALA), Library of Congress, and Forest Press.[17] By the 14th edition in 1942, the Dewey Decimal Classification index was over 1,900 pages in length and was published in two volumes.[21]

1942–present: Forging an identity

1885 Decimal LibraryBureau
1885 - Dewey Decimal Classification

The growth of the classification to date had led to significant criticism from medium and large libraries which were too large to use the abridged edition but found the full classification overwhelming. Dewey had intended issuing the classification in three editions: the library edition, which would be the fullest edition; the bibliographic edition, in English and French, which was to be used for the organization of bibliographies rather than of books on the shelf; and the abridged edition.[22] In 1933, the bibliographic edition became the Universal Decimal Classification, which left the library and abridged versions as the formal Dewey Decimal Classification editions. The 15th edition, edited by Milton Ferguson, implemented the growing concept of the "standard edition", designed for the majority of general libraries but not attempting to satisfy the needs of the very largest or of special libraries.[23] It also reduced the size of the Dewey system by over half, from 1,900 to 700 pages. This revision was so radical that an advisory committee was formed right away for the 16th and 17th editions.[24] The 16th and 17th editions, under the editorship of the Library of Congress, grew again to two volumes. However, by now, the Dewey Decimal system had established itself as a classification for general libraries, with the Library of Congress Classification having gained acceptance for large research libraries.[25]

The first electronic version of "Dewey" was created in 1993.[26] Hard-copy editions continue to be issued at intervals; the online WebDewey and Abridged WebDewey are updated quarterly.[27]

Administration and publication

Dewey and a small editorial staff managed the administration of the very early editions. Beginning in 1922, the Lake Placid Club Educational Foundation, a not-for-profit organization founded by Melvil Dewey, managed administrative affairs. The ALA set up a Special Advisory Committee on the Decimal Classification as part of the Cataloging and Classification division of ALA in 1952. The previous Decimal Classification Committee was changed to the Decimal Classification Editorial Policy Committee, with participation of the ALA Division of Cataloging and Classification, and of the Library of Congress.[28]

Melvil Dewey edited the first three editions of the classification system and oversaw the revisions of all editions until his death in 1931. May Seymour became editor in 1891 and served until her death in 1921. She was followed by Dorcas Fellows, who was editor until her death in 1938. Constantin J. Mazney edited the 14th edition. Milton Ferguson functioned as editor from 1949 to 1951. The 16th edition in 1958 was edited under an agreement between the Library of Congress and Forest Press, with David Haykin as director.[17] Editions 16–19 were edited by Benjamin A. Custer and the editor of edition 20 was John P. Comaromi. Joan Mitchell was editor until 2013, covering editions 21 to 23.[29] In 2013 Michael Panzer of OCLC became Editor-in-Chief.[30] The Dewey Editorial Program Manager since 2016 has been Dr. Rebecca Green.[31]

Dewey himself held copyright in editions 1 to 6 (1876–1919). Copyright in editions 7–10 was held by the publisher, The Library Bureau.[32] On the death of May Seymour, Dewey conveyed the "copyrights and control of all editions" to the Lake Placid Club Educational Foundation, a non-profit chartered in 1922.[33] The Online Computer Library Center (OCLC) of Dublin, Ohio, US, acquired the trademark and copyrights associated with the Dewey Decimal Classification system when it bought Forest Press in 1988. In 2003 the Dewey Decimal Classification came to the attention of the U.S. press when OCLC sued the Library Hotel for trademark infringement for using the classification system as the hotel theme.[34] The case was settled shortly thereafter.[35]

The OCLC has maintained the classification since 1988, and also publishes new editions of the system. The editorial staff responsible for updates is based partly at the Library of Congress and partly at OCLC. Their work is reviewed by the Decimal Classification Editorial Policy Committee, a ten-member international board which meets twice each year. The four-volume unabridged edition was published approximately every six years, with the last edition (DDC 23) published in mid-2011.[36] In 2017 the editorial staff announced that the English edition of DDC will no longer be printed, in favor of using the frequently updated WebDewey.[37] An experimental version of Dewey in RDF was previously available at beginning in 2009,[38] but has not been available since 2015.[39]

In addition to the full version, a single-volume abridged edition designed for libraries with 20,000 titles or fewer has been made available since 1895. The last printed English abridged edition, Abridged Edition 15, was published in early 2012.[40]

Full edition Publication year Abridged edition Publication year
1st 1876
2nd 1885
3rd 1888
4th 1891
5th 1894 1st 1895
6th 1899
7th 1911
8th 1913 2nd 1915
9th 1915
10th 1919
11th 1922 3rd 1926
12th 1927 4th 1929
13th 1932 5th 1936
14th 1942 6th 1945
15th 1951 7th 1953
16th 1958 8th 1959
17th 1965 9th 1965
18th 1971 10th 1971
19th 1979 11th 1979
20th 1989 12th 1990
21st 1996 13th 1997
22nd 2003 14th 2004
23rd 2011 15th 2012


The Dewey Decimal Classification organizes library materials by discipline or field of study. Main divisions include philosophy, social sciences, science, technology, and history. The scheme comprises ten classes, each divided into ten divisions, each having ten sections. The system's notation uses Arabic numbers, with three whole numbers making up the main classes and sub-classes and decimals designating further divisions. The classification structure is hierarchical and the notation follows the same hierarchy. Libraries not needing the full level of detail of the classification can trim right-most decimal digits from the class number to obtain more general classifications.[41] For example:

500 Natural sciences and mathematics
510 Mathematics
516 Geometry
516.3 Analytic geometries
516.37 Metric differential geometries
516.375 Finsler geometry

The classification was originally enumerative, meaning that it listed all of the classes explicitly in the schedules. Over time it added some aspects of a faceted classification scheme, allowing classifiers to construct a number by combining a class number for a topic with an entry from a separate table. Tables cover commonly-used elements such as geographical and temporal aspects, language, and bibliographic forms. For example, a class number could be constructed using 330 for economics + .9 for geographic treatment + .04 for Europe to create the class 330.94 European economy. Or one could combine the class 973 (for the United States) + .05 (for periodical publications on the topic) to arrive at the number 973.05 for periodicals concerning the United States generally. The classification also makes use of mnemonics in some areas, such that the number 5 represents the country Italy in classification numbers like 945 (history of Italy), 450 (Italian language), 195 (Italian philosophy). The combination of faceting and mnemonics makes the classification synthetic in nature, with meaning built into parts of the classification number.[42]

The Dewey Decimal Classification has a number for all subjects, including fiction, although many libraries maintain a separate fiction section shelved by alphabetical order of the author's surname. Each assigned number consists of two parts: a class number (from the Dewey system) and a book number, which "prevents confusion of different books on the same subject".[7] A common form of the book number is called a Cutter number, which represents the author and distinguishes the book from other books on the same topic.[43]


(From DDC 23[44])

  • 000 – Computer science, information & general works
  • 100 – Philosophy & psychology
  • 200 – Religion
  • 300 – Social sciences
  • 400 – Language
  • 500 – Pure Science
  • 600 – Technology
  • 700 – Arts & recreation
  • 800 – Literature
  • 900 – History & geography


(From DDC 23[44])

  • T1 Standard Subdivisions
  • T2 Geographic Areas, Historical Periods, Biography
  • T3 Subdivisions for the Arts, for Individual Literatures, for Specific Literary Forms
    • T3A Subdivisions for Works by or about Individual Authors
    • T3B Subdivisions for Works by or about More than One Author
    • T3C Notation to Be Added Where Instructed in Table 3B, 700.4, 791.4, 808–809
  • T4 Subdivisions of Individual Languages and Language Families
  • T5 Ethnic and National Groups
  • T6 Languages

Relative Index

The Relative Index (or, as Dewey spelled it, "Relativ Index") is an alphabetical index to the classification, for use both by classifiers but also by library users when seeking books by topic. The index was "relative" because the index entries pointed to the class numbers, not to the page numbers of the printed classification schedule. In this way, the Dewey Decimal Classification itself had the same relative positioning as the library shelf and could be used either as an entry point to the classification, by catalogers, or as an index to the Dewey-classed library itself.[45]

Influence and criticism

HK Wan Chai Library Inside Bookcase a
A library book shelf in Hong Kong classified using the New Classification Scheme for Chinese Libraries, an adaptation of the Dewey Classification Scheme

Dewey Decimal Classification numbers formed the basis of the Universal Decimal Classification (UDC), which combines the basic Dewey numbers with selected punctuation marks (comma, colon, parentheses, etc.). Adaptations of the system for specific regions outside the English-speaking world include the Korean Decimal Classification, the New Classification Scheme for Chinese Libraries, and the Nippon Decimal Classification (Japanese).[46][47]

Despite its widespread usage, the classification has been criticized for its complexity and limited scope of scheme-adjustment. In particular, the arrangement of subheadings has been described as archaic and as being biased towards an Anglo-American world view.[48][49] In 2007–08, the Maricopa County Library District in Arizona, abandoned the DDC in favor of the Book Industry Standards and Communications (BISAC) system, one that is commonly used by commercial bookstores,[50] in an effort to make their libraries more accessible for patrons. Several other libraries across the United States,[51] and other countries (including Canada and the Netherlands) followed suit.[50] The classification has also been criticized as being a proprietary system licensed by a single entity (OCLC), making it expensive to adopt. However, book classification critic Justin Newlan stands by the Dewey Decimal System, stating newer, more advanced book classification systems "are too confusing to understand for newcomers".[52]

Treatment of homosexuality

In 1932 topics relating to homosexuality were first added to the system under 132 (mental derangements) and 159.9 (abnormal psychology). In 1952 homosexuality was also included under 301.424 (the study of sexes in society). In 1989 it was added to 363.49 (social problems), a classification that continues in the current edition.[53]

In 1996 homosexuality was added to 306.7 (sexual relations) which remains the preferred location in the current edition, although books can also be found under 616.8583 (sexual practices viewed as medical disorders), however the official direction states that "Use 616.8583 for homosexuality only when the work treats homosexuality as a medical disorder, or focuses on arguing against the views of those who consider homosexuality to be a medical disorder. ... If in doubt, prefer a number other than 616.8583."[53]

Treatment of religion

The subject of religion has been very heavily favored toward Christianity, with nearly the whole 200s being used for Christianity, and only the 290s being used for all other religions, of which there are thousands.[54] While Christianity is a popular religion with 33% of the world subscribing to it, Islam has a very large following as well and only has DDC 297 to work with.[55] The entire 200 section has been largely the same since DDC 1, and it would likely be a large undertaking to completely rewrite this section, particularly for individual libraries to adapt to. Despite topics such as Islam only having a single digit associated with it, there is adequate room in that number, due to the ability to expand beyond the decimal point.[56]

Treatment of women

The topics of women have had bias in them as well as far as the classification scheme, but have been easier to edit than the religion schema, and changes have been made. Some changes that have been made have been on what items are side by side numerically.[57] Those items that are side by side are related to each other in the classification scheme. For example, the topic on women used to be next to etiquette.[57] Those two terms being next to each other would associate women with etiquette rather than etiquette being gender neutral. This was changed in DDC version 17.[57]

See also


  1. ^ Consider as an example a book on the network protocol IPv6. It will be located at 004.62, after general networking books (004.6). The shelf location is thus defined.
  2. ^ Note that the title makes use of Dewey's "reformed spelling" in some areas.


  1. ^ Dewey, Melvil (1876), Classification and Subject Index for Cataloguing and Arranging the Books and Pamphlets of a Library (Project Gutenberg eBook), retrieved 31 July 2012
  2. ^ Chapter 17 in Joudrey, Daniel N.; Taylor, Arlene G.; Miller, David P. (2015). Introduction to Cataloging and Classification (11th ed.). Santa Barbara, CA: Libraries Unlimited/ABC-CLIO. ISBN 978-1-59884-856-4.
  3. ^ "Dewey Services". OCLC. 2009. Retrieved November 4, 2009. Offers library users familiarity and consistency of a time-honored classification system used in 200,000 libraries worldwide
  4. ^ "Countries with libraries that use the DDC". OCLC. 2009. Retrieved November 4, 2009. Libraries in more than 135 countries use the Dewey Decimal Classification (DDC) system to organize their collections for their users. [135 countries are listed.]
  5. ^ Wiegand, Wayne A. (1996), Irrepressible reformer, Chicago: American Library Association, ISBN 978-0838906804, 083890680X
  6. ^ Krajewski, Markus (2011), Paper machines, Cambridge, Massachusetts: MIT Press, ISBN 9780262015899
  7. ^ a b Dewey, Melvil (1876), A Classification and Subject Index for Cataloguing and Arranging the Books and Pamphlets of a .., [s.n.], OCLC 78870163
  8. ^ Comaromi, John P. (1976), The eighteen editions of the Dewey Decimal Classification, Albany, N.Y: Forest Press Division, Lake Placid Education Foundation, p. 43, ISBN 978-0-910608-17-6
  9. ^ United States. Bureau of Education. (1876), Public libraries in the United States of America, Washington: Govt. Print. Off., pp. 623–648
  10. ^ Comaromi (1976), p. 88
  11. ^ a b Comaromi (1976), p. 155
  12. ^ Dewey decimal classification and relative index (1971). Internet Archive. 1971. Retrieved 14 December 2013.
  13. ^ Comaromi (1976), p. 171.
  14. ^ a b c Chan, Lois Mai (2007), Cataloging and classification (Third ed.), The Scarecrow Press, Inc., p. 321, ISBN 978-0-8108-5944-9, 0810859440
  15. ^ Comaromi (1976), p. 218.
  16. ^ Comaromi (1976), p. 315.
  17. ^ a b c "Timeline". OCLC. Retrieved 8 December 2013.
  18. ^ "Cutter Classification". Forbes Library Subject Guides. Forbes Library. Retrieved 15 December 2013.
  19. ^ Comaromi (1976), pp. 297–313.
  20. ^ Comaromi (1976), p. 321.
  21. ^ Comaromi (1976), p. 376.
  22. ^ Comaromi (1976), p. 381
  23. ^ Comaromi (1976), p. 345
  24. ^ COMAROMI, JOHN P. (1975). The Historical Development of The Dewey Decimal Classification System. Graduate School of Library Science. University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign. hdl:2142/1778. ISBN 9780878450442.
  25. ^ Chan (2007), pp. 321–323
  26. ^ Trotter, Ross (6 July 1995). "Electronic Dewey: The CD-ROM Version of the Dewey Decimal Classification". Cataloging & Classification Quarterly. 19 (3–4): 213–234. doi:10.1300/J104v19n03_17. Retrieved 15 December 2013.
  27. ^ Majumder, Apurba Jyoti; Gautam Sarma. "Webdewey: The Dewey Decimal Classification in The Web" (PDF). INFLIBNET Centre, Ahmedabad, Planner 2007 [held at Gauhati University]. Retrieved 15 December 2013.
  28. ^ Comaromi (1976), p. 416
  29. ^ Chan (2007), pp. 323
  30. ^ Mitchell, Joan (24 January 2013). "Michael Panzer named Editor-in-Chief of the Dewey Decimal Classification system". OCLC Press Release. Retrieved 17 November 2013.
  31. ^ "Announcing Dr. Rebecca Green as new Dewey Editorial Program Manager". 025.431: The Dewey blog. Retrieved 2018-05-22.
  32. ^ Dewey, Melvil (1922). Decimal classification and relative index for libraries and personal use. Lake Placid Club, N.Y.: Forest Press. p. 2. OCLC 1367992.
  33. ^ Comaromi (1976), p. 286
  34. ^ Luo, Michael (September 23, 2003). "Where Did Dewey File Those Law Books?". The New York Times. Retrieved 17 November 2013.
  35. ^ "OCLC and The Library Hotel settle trademark complaint". Library Technology Guides. October 24, 2003.
  36. ^ "Latest versions". OCLC. Retrieved 8 December 2013.
  37. ^ "Dewey Print Editions". 025.431: The Dewey blog. Retrieved 2018-05-22.
  38. ^ "Dewey Decimal Classification (DDC) - the Datahub". Retrieved 2018-05-22.
  39. ^ "Change to Dewey Web Services | OCLC Developer Network". 2015-06-15. Retrieved 2018-05-22.
  40. ^ "Abridged". OCLC. 2012. Retrieved 23 January 2013.
  41. ^ Chan (2007), pp. 326–331
  42. ^ Chan (2007), p. 331
  43. ^ Chan (2007), p. 333-362
  44. ^ a b OCLC. "Introduction to the Dewey Decimal Classification". Retrieved 8 December 2013.
  45. ^ United States. Office of Education. (1876), Public libraries in the United States of America, Washington: Govt. print. off., p. 628
  46. ^ "A Brief Introduction to the Dewey Decimal Classification". OCLC. Retrieved 16 November 2013.
  47. ^ Taylor, Insup; Wang Guizhi. "Library Systems in East Asia". McLuhan Studies. Retrieved 16 November 2013.
  48. ^ Kaplan, Tali Balas. "Done with Dewey". ALSC. Retrieved 15 December 2013.
  49. ^ Fandino, Marta (2008). "UDC or DDC: a note about the suitable choice for the National Library of Liechtenstein" (PDF). Extensions and Corrections to the UDC. Retrieved 15 December 2013.
  50. ^ a b Clarke, Rachel Ivy (May 7, 2013). "Picturing Classification The Evolution and Use of Alternative Classification in Dutch Public Libraries". Public Libraries Online. Retrieved 15 December 2013.
  51. ^ Fister, Barbara (October 1, 2009). "In the search for better browsability, librarians are putting Dewey in a different class". The Library Journal. Retrieved 9 February 2014.
  52. ^ McCarthy, Laena (January 2009). "New Classification System for Public Libraries?". The Public Library Association Blog. Retrieved 15 December 2013.
  53. ^ a b Sullivan, Doreen. "A brief history of homophobia in Dewey decimal classification". Overland. Retrieved 19 December 2017.
  54. ^ "DDC - 200 - Religion". Retrieved 2018-03-20.
  55. ^ "World's Muslim Population Will Surpass Christians This Century, Pew Says". Retrieved 2018-03-20.
  56. ^ Olson, Hope (2002). The Power to Name. Edmonton, Alberta, Canada: Springer-Science+Business Medida, B.V. p. 22. ISBN 9789048160846.
  57. ^ a b c Olson 2002, p. 8.

External links

BCM Classification

The British Catalogue of Music Classification (BCM Classification) is a faceted classification that was commissioned from E. J. Coates by the Council of the British National Bibliography to organize the content of the British Catalogue of Music. The published schedule (1960) was considerably expanded by Patrick Mills of the British Library up until its use was abandoned in 1998. Entries in the catalogue were organized by BCM classmark from the catalogue's inception in 1957 until 1982. From that year the British Catalogue of Music (which from 1974 onward was published by The British Library) was organized instead by Dewey Decimal Classification number, though BCM classmarks continued to be added to entries up to the 1998 annual cumulation.

The schedule is divided into two main parts: A–B representing Musical literature and C–Z representing Music – Scores and Parts. There are also seven auxiliary tables dealing with various sub-arrangements, sets of ethnic/locality subdivisions and chronological reference points.

The notation is retroactive using uppercase alphabetic characters omitting I and O, with the addition of slash / and parentheses ( ) which have specific anteriorizing functions. Retroactive notation requires that the classifier combines terms in reverse schedule order. This has the benefit of producing a compact notation by removing the need for facet indicators.

The schedule at A (Music Literature) parallels that from the Scores and Parts schedules thus Choral Music is at D while books about Choral Music are at AD; Harp Music is at TQ so books on harp music are at ATQ. The schedule at B accommodates books about specific composers and music in non-European traditions.

As a fully faceted scheme after the ideas of S. R. Ranganathan, BCM class numbers are capable of being chain-indexed, allowing index access to each step of the hierarchy.

BCM classification had a strong influence on Russell Sweeney's so-called Phoenix Dewey 780 schedule which in turn influenced the 780 Music schedule in the 20th edition of Dewey Decimal Classification. The music schedule of the second edition (BC2) of the Bliss bibliographic classification is also strongly influenced by BCM classification.

This classification system is still in use at a number of libraries, including the State Library of Western Australia and the Library at Edith Cowan University.

Charles Leigh (librarian)

Charles William Edward Leigh (Charles W. E. Leigh, born 1871) was an English academic librarian. From 1895 to 1903 he was successively on the staff of the British Museum (Natural History) and librarian of the Manchester Literary and Philosophical Society. In 1903 he was appointed librarian of the Library of Manchester University and held the post until his retirement in 1935. He edited two important catalogues of collections in the Library and established new administrative methods to replace the cumbersome systems used in the 19th century. The Dewey Decimal Classification was introduced by him together with higher standards in cataloguing based on those of the British Museum library.

Comparison of Dewey and Library of Congress subject classification

This is a conversion chart showing how the Dewey Decimal and Library of Congress Classification systems organize resources by concept, in part for the purpose of assigning call numbers. These two systems account for over 95% of the classification in United States libraries, and are used widely around the world.

The chart includes all ninety-nine second level (two-digit) DDC classes (040 is not assigned), and should include all second level (two-digit) LCC classes. Where a class in one system maps to several classes in other system, it will be listed multiple times (e.g. DDC class 551).

Additional information on these classification plans is available at:

Dewey Decimal Classification—high level categories, with links to lower level categories

Library of Congress Classification—high level categories

Covert Warfare

Covert Warfare: Intelligence, Counterintelligence and Military Deception During the World War II Era is an eighteen volume book edited by John Mendelsohn and published in 1989 by Garland.

The series contains sanitized versions of selected previously classified documents from the National Archives record groups.

Library of Congress Classification: D810.S7 (D810S7C66)

Dewey Decimal Classification: 940.5485

Danish Bibliographic Centre

The Danish Bibliographic Centre (DBC A/S), based in Ballerup, Denmark, produces and supplies bibliographic data and information services — for example, the Danish DK5 system (DK5 Decimalklassedeling) derived from the Dewey Decimal Classification — to Danish libraries.

DBC provides its data via DanBib, a joint bibliography for the entire Danish library system that includes a common reference database of national bibliography and holdings in all Danish public and research libraries. The system includes features to facilitate interlibrary loans, reuse of bibliographic data verification as well as links to relevant databases such as the Library of Congress and the ISSN system.

The Danish ISBN office, which allocates the Danish ISBN prefixes 87- in the ISBN-10 case and 978-87- in the ISBN-13 case, is part of the Danish Bibliographic Centre.

Everything Is Miscellaneous

Everything Is Miscellaneous: The Power of the New Digital Disorder is a book by David Weinberger published in 2007 (ISBN 0805080430). The book's central premise is that there is no universally acceptable way of classifying information. Starting with the story of the Dewey Decimal Classification, Weinberger demonstrates that all attempts to classify inherently reflect the biases of the person defining the classification system.

Godfrey Dewey

Dr. Godfrey Dewey (September 3, 1887 – October 1977) was the president of the Lake Placid Organizing Committee and was largely responsible for the successful candidature of Lake Placid for the 1932 Winter Olympics. In addition to his role as the U.S. ski team manager he was chosen as the flag bearer for the 1928 Games in St. Moritz, Switzerland.Godfrey Dewey was the son of Melvil Dewey, the inventor of Dewey Decimal Classification, and his first wife Annie Godfrey. He went on to become the honorary chairman of the Phonemic Spelling Council.

Korean decimal classification

The Korean decimal classification (KDC) is a system of library classification used in South Korea. The main classes are the same as in the Dewey Decimal Classification but these are in a different order: Natural sciences 400; Technology and engineering 500; Arts 600; Language 700.

Library Hotel

Library Hotel by Library Hotel Collection is a 60-room boutique hotel in New York City, located at 299 Madison Avenue (at 41st Street), near the New York Public Library, Bryant Park, and Grand Central Terminal. The hotel was designed by architect Stephen B. Jacobs.

Library Hotel by Library Hotel Collection boasts a unique organizing principle: each of its ten guest floors has a theme, designated after a major category of the Dewey Decimal Classification (the 5th floor, for example, is the 500s, the Sciences), with each room as a subcategory or genre, such as Mathematics (Room 500.001) or Botany (Room 500.004). (Dewey categories 000, 100, and 200 are placed on the 10th, 11th, and 12th floors, respectively.) Other room themes include Erotic Literature (Room 800.001), Poetry (Room 800.003), and Music (Room 700.005). All rooms have a small complement of 50-100 books and decorations that accompany the theme, with 6,000 books overall throughout the hotel.

Because of this classification scheme, the hotel owners were sued in 2003 by the OCLC (owners of the Dewey Decimal Classification system). OCLC reached an agreement with the hotel enabling the hotel to continue using the Dewey system.Hotel Denouement from Lemony Snicket's The Penultimate Peril was modeled after the Library Hotel.The Library Hotel is owned and operated by Henry Kallan whose Library Hotel Collection includes Manhattan's Casablanca Hotel, Hotel Giraffe and Hotel Elysee. A spin off of the Library Hotel's "book lovers' paradise" concept is the Library Hotel Collection's Aria Hotel concept designed for music lovers. Aria Hotel Prague opened in 2003 and Aria Hotel Budapest opened in 2015 and was named the #1 ranked hotel in the world for guest satisfaction in the 2017 TripAdvisor Traveler's Choice Awards.

Library classification

A library classification is a system of knowledge organization by which library resources are arranged and ordered systematically. Library classifications use a notational system that represents the order of topics in the classification and allows items to be stored in that order. Library classification systems group related materials together, typically arranged in a hierarchical tree structure. A different kind of classification system, called a faceted classification system, is also widely used which allows the assignment of multiple classifications to an object, enabling the classifications to be ordered in multiple ways. The library classification numbers can be considered identifiers for resources but are distinct from the International Standard Book Number (ISBN) or International Standard Serial Number (ISSN) system.

List of Dewey Decimal classes

The Dewey Decimal Classification (DDC) is structured around ten main classes covering the entire world of knowledge; each main class is further structured into ten hierarchical divisions, each having ten sections of increasing specificity. As a system of library classification the DDC is "arranged by discipline, not subject", so a topic like clothing is classed based on its disciplinary treatment (psychological influence of clothing at 155.95, customs associated with clothing at 391, and fashion design of clothing at 746.92) within the conceptual framework. The list below presents the ten main classes, hundred divisions, and thousand sections.


The BBC's Lonclass ("London Classification") is a subject classification system used internally at the BBC throughout its archives.Lonclass is derived from the Universal Decimal Classification (UDC), itself a reworking of the earlier Dewey Decimal Classification (DDC). Lonclass dates from the 1960s, whereas UDC was created from DDC in the late 19th century. The BBC adaptation of UDC preserves the core features that distinguish UDC from DDC: an emphasis on a compositional semantics that allows new items to be expressed in terms of relationships between known items.

Lonclass and UDC (like DDC) are expressed using codes based on decimal numbers. Unlike DDC, the Lonclass and UDC codes use additional punctuation to express patterns of relationships and re-usable qualifiers. While Lonclass makes a few structural adjustments to the UDC system to support its emphasis on TV and radio content, its main distinction is in the actual set of topics that are recorded within its authority file and within specific BBC catalogue records. Unlike UDC and DDC, which are widely used across the library community, Lonclass has remained a BBC-internal system since its creation in the 1960s.

There are 300,000 subject terms in the Lonclass vocabulary.

Melvil Dewey

Melville Louis Kossuth "Melvil" Dewey (December 10, 1851 – December 26, 1931) was an American librarian and educator, inventor of the Dewey Decimal system of library classification, and a founder of the Lake Placid Club.

Metadata management

Metadata management involves managing metadata about other data, whereby this "other data" is generally referred to as content data. The term is used most often in relation to digital media, but older forms of metadata are catalogs, dictionaries, and taxonomies. For example, the Dewey Decimal Classification is a metadata management systems developed in 1876 for libraries.

Minnesota's 6th congressional district

Minnesota's 6th congressional district includes most or all of Benton, Carver, Sherburne, Stearns, Wright, Anoka, and Washington counties. The district is Republican-leaning with a CPVI of R+12. It is currently represented by Republican Tom Emmer.

Mount Dewey

Mount Dewey (65°54′S 64°19′W) is a mountain, 1,830 metres (6,000 ft) high, standing 8 nautical miles (15 km) southeast of Mount Cheops on the west coast of Graham Land. It was charted by the British Graham Land Expedition of 1934–37 under John Rymill, and it was named by the UK Antarctic Place-Names Committee in 1959 for Melvil Dewey, the American originator of the Dewey Decimal Classification, from which the Universal Decimal Classification is derived.

National Library Service of Belize

The National Library Service of Belize was founded in 1825. It is the legal deposit repository for Belize. It is headquartered in Belize City.

The Library is governed by a Board of Directors consisting of ten members, eight of which are appointed by the Minister of Education to represent a cross-section of Belizean society.

Belizean citizens may use the library upon application for a membership card, which costs $13. Non-citizens may obtain a card for $43, 40 of which is refundable upon departure from the country.

The Library Service utilizes the Dewey Decimal Classification System.


OCLC Online Computer Library Center, Incorporated d/b/a OCLC is an American nonprofit cooperative organization "dedicated to the public purposes of furthering access to the world's information and reducing information costs". It was founded in 1967 as the Ohio College Library Center. OCLC and its member libraries cooperatively produce and maintain WorldCat, the largest online public access catalog (OPAC) in the world. OCLC is funded mainly by the fees that libraries have to pay for its services (around $200 million annually as of 2016). OCLC also maintains the Dewey Decimal Classification system.

Stockbridge public library

Stockbridge public library, built in 1898, is one of Edinburgh's 28 freely accessible libraries, located in the Stockbridge area of the city.

The library is currently open six days a week and, in addition to the collection of books, provides "bookbug" sessions for the under-fives, a knitting club and acts as one of the city's business hubsAs with all of the city's libraries, Stockbridge library uses the Library of Congress Classification system for its adult collection. Since 1974, when Wigan dropped the classification system, Edinburgh is the only area in the UK where public libraries use the US classification scheme. Children's books, and some non-English works, are indexed using the Dewey Decimal Classification scheme.

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