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Usage Notes

It was more common for periodicals in the nineteenth century to have subtitles than newspapers, though the blurring of publication genres makes this distinction difficult. The subtitle would be printed on the masthead of periodicals, and could provide further information about geographic coverage, topics covered, or definitions of audience. However, most collections do not contain fields for newspaper subtitles.


Fig. 1

Masthead of The Graphic, 11 January 1890, showing subtitle “An Illustrated Weekly Newspaper”. Wikimedia Commons.

Masthead including subtitle (“Devoted to the Interests of Judaism in the Australasian Colonies”) and motto in Hebrew (“מי לד’ אלי”) and English (“‘Who is on the Lord’s side, let him come to me!’—Exodus xxxii, 26”), The Jewish Herald, 12 December 1879: 1. Trove.

Mottos, related titles, or statements of geographic or other intended audience may appear with the title in the masthead, but these statements are generally not considered to be part of the title and are not transcribed…” [Sagendorf and Moore, 14]

“Founded as a 1d weekly in October 1894 by Frederick A. Atkins with the subtitle A Weekly Record of Christian Culture, Social Service, and Literary Life, the journal aimed to ‘combine the highest uses of a newspaper with the more instructive services of a magazine’. Reflecting its subtitle, its 20 pages included topical commentary…” [DNCJ, JRW, 442]

“This inherent hybridity was registered in the Observer’s subtitle, A Record and Review.” [Hughes, 203]

“In 1841 Punch’s subtitle ‘the London Charivari’ had recalled and appropriated a Parisian model at a time when translations of Sue, Dumas and Féval were selling well: London Journal likewise preferred to look towards Paris.” [King 2017, 67]