a multilingual classification system for cultural content

Tips & tricks to get you started

The purpose of the Iconclass system is simple: it is an instrument for the arrangement of a collection of documents by subject matter. It will put related themes and subjects in a helpful order, according to a carefully constructed scheme of divisions and subdivisions. This means that, for example, Father Time will be filed as a specific example of the allegories of Time and Eternity and that parrots, ducks, finches, partridges and owls will all be grouped together as specific cases of birds.

When you apply Iconclass to pictures of biblical or mythological stories, they will be grouped in a self-evident way: the beheading of John the Baptist will be automatically stored as part of the story of the Baptist, the scene of Aeneas carrying his father from burning Troy will be recognized as an element of the story of Aeneas' wanderings, and the miracle of the manna will be automatically seen as an event from the book of Exodus.

A practical guide to the browser

The best way to get acquainted with this new Iconclass browser is by simply starting to apply it to your collection. Just browse and search the system for descriptors that will fit your documents. Even so, we do advise you to have a look at the basic instructions you will find in the Practical Guide to the Iconclass 2100 Browser.

Sample keyword queries

Elsewhere we have included an outline of the Iconclass system to help you on your way when you want to browse the schedules. Below we have prepared a selection of keyword searches that will give you an impression of the contents both of Iconclass. Simply click one to start exploring.

Abraham and Isaac · Abraham and Lot · Abraham and Melchizedek · Abraham and Sarah · Adam and Eva · Aeneas and Dido · Aeneas and his Father · Annas and Caiaphas · Apollo and Daphne · Apollo and Phaethon · beard or moustache · Cain and Abel · Cupid and Psyche · David and Absalom · David and the Ark of the Covenant · David and Bathsheba · David and Goliath · David and Jonathan · David and Uriah · Diana and Endymion · Elijah and the widow · Esther and Mordecai · Father Son and Holy Ghost · Fortune and Misfortune · Good and Bad · Hagar and Ishmael · hell or purgatory · Hercules and Deianira · Hippomenes and Atalante · Icarus and Daedalus · Jacob and Esau · Jacob and his sons · Jephthah and his daughter · Joachim and Anna · Job and his wife · Joseph and his brothers · Joseph and the wife of Potiphar · Judith and Holofernes · Jupiter and Danae · Jupiter and Europa · Jupiter and Ganymede · Jupiter and Io · Jupiter and Leda · Lot and his daughters · Mars and Venus · Mary and Elisabeth · Mary and Joseph · Mary and Martha · medicine or physician · Moses and Aaron · mythological love-affairs · Nimrod and the tower of Babel · Noah and the Ark · Paris and Helen · Peleus and Thetis · Perseus and Andromeda · Peter and Andrew · Peter and Paul · Philemon and Baucis · possessions or property · Pyramus and Thisbe · Rich and Poor · Romulus and Remus · Samson and Delilah · Simeon and Anna · Solomon and the Queen of Sheba · Susanna and the elders · Time and Truth · Tobias and Sarah · Ulysses and Circe · Ulysses and Nausicaa · Venus and Adonis · Venus and Cupid

For more information about the Iconclass Classification System see www.iconclass.nl