This special search box searches the Commonplace Book for words or phrases, including words in quotations and in the names of authors. It is separate from the main website search box because it searches only the Commonplace Book.

Type the word or phrase you want to search for in the search box, and then hit ENTER. If you are searching for a phrase, remember to put the whole phrase in quotation marks. The search feature will show the beginning of each Commonplace Book page that contains the word or phrase searched for. Click the link at the end or each result where it says “Continue reading…” and scroll down until you see the word or phrase highlighted. There may be more than one hit on a page, and the search feature may have found hits on more than one page – scroll through to the bottom to be sure you have found them all.

Other Writing: Commonplace Book

What is a commonplace book? Here’s Wikipedia on the subject.

Commonplace books … emerged in the 15th century with the availability of cheap paper for writing, mainly in England. They were a way to compile knowledge, usually by writing information into books. They were essentially scrapbooks filled with items of every kind: medical recipes, quotes, letters, poems, tables of weights and measures, proverbs, prayers, legal formulas. Commonplaces were used by readers, writers, students, and humanists as an aid for remembering useful concepts or facts they had learned. Each commonplace book was unique to its creator’s particular interests.

“Commonplace” is a translation of the Latin term locus communis which means “a theme or argument of general application,” such as a statement of proverbial wisdom. In this original sense, commonplace books were collections of such sayings, such as Milton’s commonplace book.