Searching GENUKI


          Help and Guidance 2021: Modified Page: Version 1.1



This page gives you help on most of the straightforward uses of the search engine in GENUKI.  There are more powerful options to find more complex combinations of words; these are described in the  more detailed search guidance.


To search most GENUKI content enter a word or words in the Search box in the top centre of each page and click on the blue button Search GENUKI Pages. See Refine your search below on how to choose a set to words.

NOTE MacOS, OSX,  iPad and iPhone users see message about using quotes further down


You will get one or more pages of results listing each node that meets the criteria. Each result shows the title of the node (as a clickable link) and some text from the node often with some of the search words highlighted.

Narrowing the results

In the right  hand column, you will see three headings initially and a fourth that will appear  as selections are made. Within the lists under each heading you can make selections to narrow down the set of results that are visible.

  • The first heading, Country, shows which countries contain any of the results of the search. There is also a category called [Non-geographic]: as you might infer this will show the results that are not allocated to any country. Typically these will be pages of help and guidance.
  • The second heading, County/Region, will list all the counties for which there are results. It will also list any of the countries for which there are results that apply  only to the country as a whole and not just to one of its counties. Again [Non-geographic] can appear here.
  • A third heading, Place,  will appear when you have selected one of the items under the County/Region heading. It will list the places (typically parishes) where the results for the selected County/Region can be found. If you have non-georgpahic results you might find places called none  or nowhere
  • The final heading, Page Type, will be visible from the outset and will continue to be visible at the bottom of the column once the Place heading appears. It  shows the type of node. Only those types of nodes found by the search will be in the list and each will show the number of items of that type.

There are check boxes against each item in the lists. Click on the box to select that item. The set of results will change to reflect your selection; the lists under the headings will also change as will the figures showing the numbers of results.

Typically you might wish to select from each heading in turn down the list but you can select from an item say at county level and the lists will adjust automatically.

Expanding the search again

Working your way down the list  will gradually limit the search. If you want to expand it again uncheck items working up the list .

In some cases of complex searches this deselection may not work correctly. If you encounter that problem simply press the blue search button again and the whole set of results will appear for you to review again.

Refine your searches 

If you enter more than one word ("term") then the search will find all nodes with any of those terms in the visible text. This is the default "OR" search. 

If you want to find a phrase then enclose the words in quotes. You will see in the results  that each occurrence of the individual term is highlighted. However the results only reflect pages where the whole phrase is found.

Note for MacOS, OSX,  iPad and iPhone users

If you are searching for a phrase and enter the phrase in quotes you will sometimes get unexpected results - usually much larger numbers than you expect. This occurs when the software on your iPhone or iPad has been set to use smart punctuation. This generates quotation marks that are thought to be better visually. Unfortunately they are not recognised by the search engine: it then finds the results for all the words taken separately.

In the most recent versions of iPadOS (13.6) you can switch off smart punctuation in Settings > General > Keyboard 

You can check whether your OSX or MacOS software is using smart quotes in System Preferences > Keyboard > Text 

If you want to find nodes with all the search terms  then put AND in between the terms. Note that it is vital to specify AND in capital letters (upper case) otherwise it looks for the word 'and'.

As an example searching for:

  • Clovelly Herring Boats will give you  2650 results. Those are all the nodes with one or more of those three words.
  • Clovelly  "Herring Boats" will give you 770. Those are the nodes with either the first word or the second phrase or both
  • Clovelly AND "Herring Boats" will give you  3 results.  This gives only the nodes with both the first word and the second phrase.

(Figures as at mid 2020! for the proper results. You will see a few in some redundant documents that are being removed shortly)

Using wildcards

The single character wildcard search uses the '?' symbol - so to search for 'John' or 'Joan' use the search:


(though this will also find "Join").

To perform a multiple (zero or more) character wildcard search use the '*' symbol - thus the search:


will find 'Church', 'Churches', 'Churchyard', etc.

Both '?' and '*' can be used within a term, but cannot be used as the first character of a search, or within a phrase.

Excluding terms

The use of '-' before a term excludes pages that contain the term. Thus to search for pages that contain "Clovelly" but not the word "Sydney" or the phrase "Western Australia" use the query:

Clovelly -Sydney -"Western Australia"