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Pattern headings for LC subjects

Find information about pattern headings, which are representative of particular categories, for Library of Congress subject headings.

The Library of Congress has identified headings that are representative of particular categories. Such headings are called pattern headings. These representative headings in each category are established in the subject authority file with a set of subdivisions appropriate for use with other headings belonging to the category. The following table lists those pattern headings identified by LC. Pattern headings can help you: 

  • Verify subject headings in an existing bibliographic record
  • Select appropriate subject headings to include in an original record
Subject field Category Pattern heading(s)
Religion Religious and monastic orders Jesuits
Religions Buddhism
Christian denominations Catholic Church
Sacred works (including parts) Bible
History and Geography Colonies of individual countries Great Britain $x Colonies
Legislative bodies (including individual chambers) United States. $b Congress
Military services (including armies, navies, marines, etc.) United States $x Armed Forces
United States. $b Air Force
United States. $b Army United States. $b Marine Corps
United States. $b Navy
Wars World War, 1939-1945
United States $x History $y Civil War, 1861-1865
Social Sciences Industries Construction industry
Retail trade
Types of educational institutions Universities and colleges
Individual educational institutions Harvard University
Legal topics Labor laws and legislation
The Arts Art Art, Italian
Art, Chinese
Art, Japanese
Art, Korean
Groups of literary authors (including authors, poets, dramatists, etc.) Authors, English
Literary works entered under author Shakespeare, William, $d 1564-1616. $t Hamlet
Literary works entered under title Beowulf
Languages and groups of languages English language
French language
Romance languages
Literatures (including individual genres) English literature
Musical compositions Operas
Musical instruments Clarinet
Science and Technology Land vehicles Automobiles
Materials Concrete
Chemicals Copper
Organs and regions of the body Heart
Diseases Cancer
Plants and crops Corn
Animals Fishes