BIC Subject Categories and Qualifiers

This is BIC’s Subject Categories and Qualifiers Scheme, version 2.1 released November 2010, the standard classification scheme for the UK book trade and some other English language markets, available from

Note that BIC has announced that there will be no further development of the BIC scheme, and that Thema is its preferred subject scheme for current and future use. Browse the latest version of the Thema international, multilingual subject category scheme here.

See the Search hints below

Code Description
H Humanities
HB History
Note: do not use “HB” on individual books. For all HB* codes, assign also more specific Geographical and Time Period qualifiers where possible
HBA History: theory and methods
HBG General and world history
HBJ Regional and national history
Note: with all HBJ* codes, also assign appropriate HBL* code and specific Geographical qualifiers where possible
HBL History: earliest times to present day
Note: with all HBL* codes, also assign HBG or HBJ* code as appropriate
HBT History: specific events and topics
For corporate histories, use KJZ “History of specific companies / corporate history”; for economic history, use KCZ “Economic history”; for history of architecture, use AMX “History of architecture”; for history of art, see AC “History of art / Art & design styles” and following; for history of education, use JNB “History of education”; fo history of engineering and technology, use TBX “History of engineering and technology”; for history of ideas, use JFCX “History of ideas”; for history of law, use LAZ “Legal history”; for history of medicine, use MBX “History of medicine”; for history of philosophy, see HPC “History of Western philosophy” and following; for history of religion, see HRAX “History of religion” and HRCC2 “Church history”; for history of science, use PDX “History of science”; for history of sport, use WSBX “History of sport”; for local history, use WQH “Local history”
HBW Military history
See also: JW “Warfare and defence” and following

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