Syndetic structure

The adjective "syndetic" means "serving to connect" or "to be connected by a conjunction". (A conjunction being a word used to connect words, phrases and clauses, for example: and, but, if). The antonym is "asyndetic" (connections made without conjoins).


In a catalog or index, the syndetic structure comprises the system of "see" and "see also" cross references to other indexing terms. A syndetic device is a device used to connect related headings by means of cross-references.


The term syndetic structure is also sometimes used about semantic relations such as BT, NT and RT, for example, in thesauri. The syndetic structure of "see" and "see also" references is of course a less specific form of indicating semantic relations.





Palmer, J. W. (1986). Subject Authority Control and Syndetic Structure- Myth and Realities An Inquiry into Certain Subject Heading Practices and Some Questions About Their Implications. Cataloging and Classification Quarterly, 7(2), 71-95.

Wepsiec, J. (1978). Inquiry into syndetic structure of Library of Congress Subject Headings in anthropology. Library Resources & Technical Services, 22(1), 61-80.


Wilson, M. D. (1998). Specificity, syndetic structure, and subject access to works about individual corporate bodies. Library Resources & Technical Services, 42(4), 272-281. 





Birger Hjørland

Last edited: 02-04-2007