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How to write search queries for this website

Things you should know

Queries are case insensitive. The query Liberal Democrats is the same as the query liberal democrats.

Accents on letters are ignored. The query Lembit Öpik is the same as the query Lembit Opik.

Unless it has a specific purpose described below, punctuation is ignored. The query Winning Here! is the same as the query Winning Here.

Results are sorted by relevance with the content most similar to your search query listed first.

Basic search queries

Terms are separated by spaces. The query Liberal Democrats returns all content containing either word.

Words can be joined into phrases using quotation marks. The exact words in the phrase must appear in the exact order you specify. The query "Stronger Economy Fairer Society" only matches content containing exactly that phrase.

To require that a particular term appears in the results, put a plus sign before it. All results for the query +Liberal Democrats must contain "Liberal" and may contain "Democrats". To require an entire phrase, use a plus sign and quotation marks, such as +"Liberal Democrats".

To exclude results containing a particular term, put a minus sign before it. The query Liberal -Democrats only matches results containing "Liberal" and not "Democrats".

Plus and minus signs must follow spaces, otherwise they are ignored. The query by-election is the same as the query by election.

More advanced queries

To specify that a term appears in the title or in the content of a page, use a colon, such as title:"Liberal Democrats" and content:"Liberal Democrats". This only applies to the term immediately after the colon, so title:Liberal Democrats matches pages with "Liberal" in the title and "Democrats" in the title or content. If you want to match either term in the title but not necessarily in the exact order, you can prefix both terms, like title:Liberal title:Democrats, or use brackets, like title:(Liberal Democrats)

To match all words beginning with certain letters, put a star after the word. The query Lib* Dem* matches "Lib Dem", "Lib Dems", and "Liberal Democrats".

If you're not sure how to spell a word or want to match similar sounding words, put a tilde after the word. The queries Edinbruh~ and Edinborough~ match "Edinburgh".

Dates can be expressed in the format YYYY-MM-DD. published:2010-01-05 moves content written on 5 January 2010 nearer the front of the results, whereas +published:2010-01-05 only matches content written on that date.

Date ranges can be expressed with square brackets and the word "TO" in capital letters, so +published:[2010-01-01 TO 2010-01-31] matches any content written during January 2010.

To find words which appear close together but not necessarily in exactly the same order, use quotation marks followed by a tilde and a number. "Liberal Democrats"~10 matches "Liberal" and "Democrats" wherever they appear with no more than ten words between them.

To increase the importance of a particular term, follow it with a caret and a number. The default importance of each term is 1. Liberal^4 Democrats makes "Liberal" four times as important as "Democrats" when determining the relevance of results.