# Help:Advanced Searches in the Wiki

Anyone may search for articles in the FamilySearch Research Wiki. Users do not need to be registered to do this. This article will provide details about advanced searching techniques that can be used in the Wiki.
Further information: Search Tips and Basic Searches

## Contents

### What is Boolean?

Boolean is a set of values that helps determine if something is true or false. In simpler terms, it allows users to use the words "AND," "OR," and "NOT" or a hyphen ( - ) to narrow down search results.

The following is list of Boolean expressions that may be used for advanced searching:

#### AND

Type the word AND between two words. This will search for articles that contain both "word1" AND "word2" somewhere on the page. If you type a sequence of words, it is the same as if you had typed AND between each word. Examples:

1. word1 AND word2
2. word1 AND word2 AND word3
3. word1 word2 word3

#### OR

Type the word OR between two words that you want to search for. This will search for articles that contain either "word1" or "word2," but not both words together on the same page.

1. word1 OR word2 Example: Vital records OR Civil registration
2. word3 OR word4 Example: Census OR Tax

#### Hyphen ( - ) is used the same as NOT

Search uses a modified form of boolean algebra that uses the hyphen in place of the operator NOT. As such, use the hyphen ( - ) (with a space preceding it) between two words to search for articles that contain "word1" but do not contain "word2".  You can also use a hyphen with spaces on each side between the two words.

word1 - word2 Example: England - London and word1 -word2 Example: England -London produce the same search result. All pages that contain "England" but do not include "London" will be displayed.

### Parenthesis

You can control the search with parenthetical expressions by using the parenthesis.

1. (word1 AND (word2 OR word3)) Example: (German AND Emigration) OR birth)) This would produce results for pages with content that includes German and Emigration or only birth.

### Wild Cards

The asterisk and the question mark can be used as wild cards in a search. Use the asterisk in place of one or more characters at the end of a word. Use the question mark to take the place of a single character in a word. Examples:

1. birt*  This will return articles that contain the words that begin with "birt" such as birth, births or birthday...
2. fa?e This will return articles that contain the words face, fame and fate...

Note that you can use more than one "?" in a word. Example: phr??e

### Phrase Search

Text with double quotes implies a phrase search. Use this type of search when you need to find an article that includes the exact phrase you are looking for. Example:

1. "New York City"
2. "California birth records"
3. "Family History Library"