A nonfiction book will typically have an index at the end so that the reader can easily find information about particular topics. An index lists the topics in alphabetical order. The names of people are listed with the last name first. For example, ‘Adams, John’ would come before ‘Washington, George’. To the right of the entry, the relevant page numbers are listed. When a topic is mentioned over several pages, the index will often connect these pages with a dash. For instance, if the subject is mentioned from pages 35 to 42 and again on 53, then the index entry will be labeled as 35-42, 53. Some entries will have subsets, which are listed below the main entry, indented slightly, and placed in alphabetical order. This is common for subjects that are discussed frequently in the book. For instance, in a book about Elizabethan drama, William Shakespeare will likely be an important topic. Beneath Shakespeare’s name in the index, there might be listings for death of, dramatic works of, life of, etc. These more specific entries help the reader refine his search.
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Last updated: 12/18/2017
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