Questions for users

Click on a question to be taken straight to the answer. If you have a question that is not on this list, please contact us.

Which books are within OSEO?

Finding information within OSEO

Working with the content

New Oxford Shakespeare (NOS)



Which books are within OSEO?

How often is OSEO updated?

The content on OSEO is set to grow into a massive virtual library, with new content added in chronological steps—the rest of the Victorians, and the twentieth century, as well as medieval and more classical works—until ultimately it will include all of Oxford’s distinguished list of authoritative scholarly editions. For the latest information on updates, please sign up to our RSS feed.

How can I find out which new titles are being added to OSEO?

You can subscribe to an RSS feed from the Home Page, which delivers new information about OSEO straight to your desktop.

For the most recent list of forthcoming titles for OSEO, including pricing, please contact your sales representative.

There is an Oxford Scholarly Edition which I would like to see available on OSEO

Please contact us with details of the Edition and we will let you know when we’re planning on including it within OSEO.

How is the text of the editions digitized?

The full text of each edition has been digitized for online display and has an underlying structural markup in XML that supports advanced search. Each digitized text has been through a checking process to ensure high levels of accuracy. Inevitably errors may arise during the digitization process. We welcome feedback from users which will enable us to correct the data displayed on OSEO. Users can also consult a pdf  of any page of the print edition which is an exact replica of each printed page.



Finding information within OSEO

Where does information on an Author page come from?

Each major author on OSEO has an Author page which provides contextual information about their life and works. This information comes largely from within the relevant scholarly editions themselves, or (e.g. in the case of vital dates) from other reliable sources such as the Oxford Dictionary of National Biography.

The earliest and latest work statements pertain only to material on OSEO. They are based on composition dates (or in some cases earliest date of publication) as stated within the OUP edition.

Any date given after a work title is the year of earliest publication.

One of the cross-reference links in the text doesn't work

If a cross-reference link in the text isn't working, please contact us and we will try to fix the issue as soon as possible.

What are the different ways of searching within OSEO?

There are three main ways in which you can carry out a search in OSEO:

  • Quick Search

The Quick Search is used to search for authors, editions, works, or specific terms. Phrases need to be in inverted commas (“”) and wildcards (* and ?) can be used.
Find more information on Quick Search here.

  • Advanced Search

The Advanced Search is used to search the entire content of OSEO, including bibliographical data and metadata as well as the content of each edition. You can also search for multiple terms.
Find more information on Advanced Search here.

  • Using the Find Location in text option

This enables a user to search for a specific location within a text. For example a line number, a page number, a scene number.
Read more information on Find location in text here.

The content in OSEO can also be browsed by edition, work, and author.

How do I search in Greek?

You can perform a text search using Greek letters by installing the Greek keyboard layout on your computer or device. For Mac users you’ll find this in System Preferences > Language & Text; for PC users Control Panel > Regional and Language Options. You do not need to use accents in your search query and you do not need to differentiate between medial (σ) and terminal sigma (ς). You can also copy a word from a text on OSEO and paste it into the search box. Greek search is not sensitive to inflected forms, but wildcards may be used to broaden the search term.

If you are using the locus locator to navigate to a particular line in a text, you can input author names and work titles in English or Greek letters. You can also use common abbreviations, transliterations, and English translations. For example the same results appear whether you use the form Οἰδίπους Τύραννος or Oedipus the King or other common variations.

Where are the textual notes?

Each edition has been restructured in its online presentation, so that textual notes are accessible alongside the text of a work no matter where they are located in the original print edition. When you view a work that contains textual notes, the notes appear in a Notes panel on the right-hand side of the work itself.

Both editor’s Notes (identified by a circle symbol) and critical apparatus (identified by a diamond symbol) are displayed as default in the Notes panel. You can select to remove either and/or both by clicking on the cog icon and checking/unchecking the appropriate boxes.

You can click on the symbols either in the Work Text panel, or in the Notes panel to move to the corresponding note or location in the work.

Read more detailed information about the Notes here, or watch a short video.

What linking is available in OSEO?

There are several ways in which information is linked in OSEO:

  • Links within an edition—these may be from a work to a note, or from one section of the edition to another.
  • Links between editions—the ‘work maps’ pull together works published across several related print editions (eg Hobbes’ correspondence can be displayed as a single list despite being published in two print volumes)
  • Links to other resources available in your library—from the Library drop down menu on the left hand side of the homepage
  • Links to other online resources—for example biographies with the Oxford Dictionary of National Biography and to online reviews of Oxford editions
  • The 'Extras' pane—this contains links that OUP has added to the digital version of an edition. Currently these links are of two types: links to secondary scholarship published on Oxford Scholarship Online (requires a subscription) that explicitly refer to the particular passage of a text, and links to the Oxford Latin Dictionary where the particular passage is cited in the dictionary entry. A triangle symbol in the right margin of the text indicates the existence of an ‘extra’ note to that line, and the ‘Extras’ pane can be hidden if required (instructions available here). Whilst these links will be added to continually, the ‘Extras’ pane is currently available for Classics modules only.

I’m having difficulty searching by date in Advanced Search. What date format is required?

Simply enter a year into the date field. If you wish to search with a date range, enter a year in each of the two fields; if you want to search within a given year, leave the second field blank. OSEO does not support day/month/year searching.

How are the works arranged on an Author page?

The works list contains only works which are written or translated by, or attributed to, the author within our source edition.

The works are grouped under headings (such as ‘Verse’); a work may appear in one category only. Within each category works are arranged in collections. Clicking on the plus sign will open up works within a grouping. Upper level groupings are ordered alphabetically; lower level groupings are ordered as in the edition they appear in. 

What does “omit duplicate editions” on a results page mean?

Some works occur more than once within the OSEO editions. For example Macbeth appears in The Oxford Shakespeare: The Tragedy of Macbeth as well as The Oxford Shakespeare: The Complete Works: Original-Spelling Edition, Thomas Middleton, Vol. 1: The Collected Works and The Oxford Shakespeare: The Complete Works (Second Edition). In such cases our Editorial Board have selected one edition as the default source of the work. Clicking “omit duplicate editions” means that you see a single version of a work, rather than a listing of each occurrence of it. This is intended to reduce the risk of duplicate results.

Are images from the printed editions included on OSEO?

Wherever possible images from the printed editions have been cleared for online publication and are included in the digital version available on OSEO. Where we have been unable to obtain permission to reproduce an image online, the site will display a placeholder instead.



Working with the content

Can I print text from OSEO?

Yes. You can print content from OSEO based on the current page view (which could be within a Work, Edition, Author record, search results page, or our information pages). To print any page from OSEO, use the Printer icon in the Tools toolbar at the top of the page. A preview window will appear with the correctly formatted pages, including editorial notes (where relevant), minus the site navigation components.

A Print Preview page will always be displayed to show you the format of what you are printing and a QR code is provided at the end of the printout to enable a user to return to the URL from the print out (using a QR scanner).

Please note that printing restrictions apply.

Can I save sections from the text to PDF from OSEO?

There are two ways of working with PDFs from within OSEO:

  • Generating an on-the-fly PDF of the page display. To print or save an individual page display from OSEO, navigate to the page in a Text or a Work and click the PDF button within the Tools toolbar.
  • Viewing a PDF of the original print page. To generate a PDF of the corresponding page of the print Edition, at the Edition book page, enter the print page number in the box next to GO and click Download PDF (if you click Go this will take you to the page within OSEO). A PDF of the original text corresponding to that page number will be displayed. You can then save or print the PDF as required.

Please note that Copyright restrictions apply.

How much material can I legally print/save to PDF from OSEO?

You are restricted by Copyright to the amount of information that you can print or download. It is very important that you read the Legal Notice, which includes information on printing and downloading to PDF, before printing or downloading anything from OSEO.

What is the difference between the two pdf types available on the OSEO site?

Any page of the original printed edition can be viewed as a pdf. Users might find this helpful to refer to for particular presentation (e.g. typography or layout) which may not be replicated in the html text. The help text  explains how to download a print pdf page by using the download pdf function on an Edition Page or on a Work Page.

Alternatively users may generate a pdf version of the section of text they are viewing on OSEO (for example a scene of a play, a poem) by clicking the pdf button at the top right  generate PDF icon. This pdf will present the text of the work as well as any critical apparatus or editorial notes relating to it, whether or not the user has chosen to display them in the right hand notes column. At the end of the generated pdf a QR code is displayed. Using a smartphone and scanning app, users can follow this link back to the particular page on the OSEO site.

How do I cite something from OSEO?

There are a number of ways to cite from OSEO.

From any page within an edition, click on the cite tool Cite tool icon  in the top right. This will bring up a preview of a citation statement, which you can also export to reference management software in .ris format:
 Cite tool window

Alternatively use the intelligent copy and paste tool. Select the text you want to cite using your mouse; click the tool Copy and paste icon  to bring up the OSEO clipboard containing the lines you selected together with full citation information including the OSEO URL and a DOI of that edition or work. You can see how the URL adds the line number or "milestone" to the URL that identifies the text of the work as a whole. That means that once you know the id of a work, you can make up URLs to identify particular lines in it. For example, you can use the copy and cite tool to see that Hibbard's edition of Hamlet has an identifier of 00000006, so can be identified through the URL If you would like to identify Act III Scene 1 line 59 in that work, you can identify that with the milestone 3.1.59, to make the URL will take you straight to the "slings and arrows of outrageous fortune". 

Can I take data away?

We are actively considering how to support users who want to take data away for use in their work. If you would like to tell us about your requirements which might inform our policy and future direction of OSEO, please contact us.

How do I compare texts?

Download this powerpoint (35MB) to watch a film showing a reader using OSEO to compare two different versions of a scene in King Lear. We are keen to explore how we can better support users comparing texts, and would be happy to hear about use cases that you would like to see supported: please contact us.

 Can I use the OED alongside OSEO?

There are two ways in which OSEO links with the Oxford English Dictionary:

'Open In' links allow you to double click or highlight any word in an OSEO text, to be taken straight to the OED, where you will where you will find information on pronunciation, meaning, etymology, and much more. Fore more information, please see the following news item.

'Reciprocal' links appear in the 'extras' pane, and currently span 67 scholarly editions with works by 17 authors including Shakespeare, Milton, Fielding, Wordsworth, and Austen. Each new link between the OED and OSEO is based on a quotation of an early, important, or otherwise significant usage of a word. For more information, please see the following news item.

Please note, the Oxford English Dictionary (OED) is a subscription product, so to fully use it alongside OSEO you, or your institution, will require a subscription.

Is there a Greek lexicon available?

There are no immediate plans to include the Liddell and Scott Greek lexicon on the OSEO site, as we have for the Oxford Latin Dictionary. If you are particularly interested in this feature in future, please contact us.

Why are some of the characters in the text not rendering properly?

Texts on OSEO may contain words written in different languages and scripts. To be able to view these characters correctly, you must have the appropriate fonts installed and to have correctly configured your operating system and browser. This guide might help you.



New Oxford Shakespeare (NOS)

What is the New Oxford Shakespeare project?

The New Oxford Shakespeare (NOS) is an entirely new consideration of all of Shakespeare’s works, edited afresh from the base-texts themselves, and drawing on the latest textual and theatrical scholarship. It includes three main editions, which are all available on OSEO:

  • The Modern Critical Edition — A complete Shakespeare for students and teachers in modernized spelling, fully annotated with performance points and explanatory notes
  • The Critical Reference Edition — A complete Shakespeare for literary and bibliographic scholars, in original spelling from folio and quarto copy-texts, with full critical apparatus
  • The Authorship Companion — In-depth analysis of the editorial principles, showing methods of statistical analysis and major contributions to authorship studies

Find out more at

How can I navigate between OSEO and NOS?

It is very easy to swap between the main website and The New Oxford Shakespeare homepage. Simply click on the black New Oxford Shakespeare icon (on the bottom left of the OSEO homepage) to solely focus on this new consideration of Shakespeare’s works, and likewise, click on the light-blue Oxford Scholarly Editions Online icon from the New Oxford Shakespeare homepage.

How can I view extra notes and images?

The New Oxford Shakespeare contains links to images for the appropriate folios and quartos, which are housed in the digital collections of the Bodleian Library, British Library, Folger Library, and Internet Shakespeare at the University of Victoria. If you have OSEO or NOS access, then you can see an example of this at the beginning of Macbeth. To see these images alongside the full-text, choose EXTRAS from the panes drop-down in the toolbar (top left of the page), and you’ll see the links appear in a new pane on the right.

Just like the rest of OSEO, you can use the cog wheel at the top right of any full-text page (in the notes pane) to choose which notes you want to display — or turn them all off using the panes dropdown.

How can I find out more about Shakespeare’s collaborators, identified in the New Oxford Shakespeare?

You can browse authors to see a list of all the authors identified by The New Oxford Shakespeare editors as collaborators. Each author has their own page which lists all their contributions (for example Thomas Middleton), complete with the facility to search only within those contributions.