NJ18 Call Numbers: 2001 Notation (with: 2010 Revision for SML)

Note:  NJ18 numbers are no longer being used Arts Library material. For material that would have been classed in NJ18, please use the LC call number (050 00, or 050 _4) in bib records that have copy, or create an LC call number if you need to assign one.  (2/11/2016)


NJ18 is a local classification scheme used at Yale for books about artists and architects or collections of reproductions of an artist or architect's works. NJ18 classification was originally derived from the Old Yale J18 classification scheme during the Library's conversion to LC classification in the 1970s. It is coded as an LC-style call number for indexing purposes.

This simplified version of NJ18 was adopted in 2001 by all Yale cataloging units using LC call numbers except the Divinity, Law, Medical, and Music libraries (The exception libraries did not file in the YUL union shelflist housed at Sterling Library.). Library staff should be aware that earlier versions of NJ18 rules were used prior to 1991 and from 1991- August 2001. Orbis numbers were part of NJ18 call numbers during the 1991-August 2000 period. There are no plans for converting these earlier call numbers to follow current practice.


In general, NJ18 corresponds to those numbers within the Library of Congress N-NA-NB-NC-ND-NE schedule assigned to individual artists and architects. Note that LC uses separate class numbers for artists/architects based on the medium in which the artist works (fine art in general, painting, drawing, sculpture, architecture, etc.) and on the artist's nationality. NJ18 does not make such distinctions: all artists working in all fine arts media, and all architects, from all nations, are NJ18s.

Books about an artist/architect that focus primarily on the artist/architect's contributions in areas other than art /architecture (e.g. literature, artistic photography, music, politics, art or architectural criticism) are assigned the appropriate LC class. Books about the artist's contributions in multiple creative fields (LC class NX: the arts) generally class in NJ18 if the artist/architect has already been established in NJ18 or if fine art or architecture seems predominant.

Artists' books are generally classed in NJ18.

NJ18 is not used for artists in the applied and decorative arts; the appropriate LC class in NK should be used instead. Exceptions are made when an artist established in NJ18 also produces works in the applied and decorative arts, e.g. Picasso.

NJ18 is not used for groups of artists (e.g. Cobra; Blaue Reiter) ; the appropriate LC class in N should be used instead. However, NJ18 is used for artists who collaborate on a work (Gilbert & George), for families of artists, and for architectural firms.

NJ18 is not used for artists classed in ancient art, e.g. ancient Greek sculptors. (For example, Praxiteles is assigned NB102 rather than NJ18)

For books about more than one artist/architect, or for collections of reproductions of more than one artist/architect, the rule of 3 is observed. NJ18 is used for the predominant artist or the first artist named when the books is about no more than 3 artists. For books about more than 3 artists, the book is classed by topic (genre, country, etc.)

Bibliographies of works about the artist : if a Z call number is available when copy cataloging, use it. Otherwise use NJ18.

NEW SML POLICY. Prior to June 1, 2010, all SML collections with the exception of Near East used NJ18. To facilitate processing, the decision was made to

1. Accept LCC if present in either Library of Congress or member copy for SML collections only -- Haas Arts collections will continue to apply NJ18 based on the original scope
2. Continue to use NJ18 for cataloging copy without call numbers
3. Allow as an option but not require use of LCC by original cataloging

The impact on the SML collection should be minimal since the bulk of the individual artist monographs will continue to be held by the Haas Arts Library. It is anticipated that there will be some impact on the Bass collection. If a book has already been cataloged for Haas, an added copy for Bass should be assigned the same NJ18 number.

Monograph Support Team:

1. Accept LC call numbers (050 00) and member copy (050 04) for SML materials
2. Send ALL materials for the Arts Library to CMS
3. If NJ18 has already been assigned to a copy for Haas Arts Library, use the same NJ18 number for Bass, SML, and other SML collections.

CMS copy cataloging for SML ONLY:

1. Accept LC call numbers for SML materials
2. For member copy for SML collections:

  • If an NJ18 Cutter has been established for your artist, use NJ18
  • If an NJ18 Cutter has not been established, & the record has an 050 _4, use the 050 _4
  • If an NJ18 Cutter has not been established & the record lacks an 050 _4, establish an NJ18 Cutter for your artist (i.e., do not route to Original Cataloging for a call number)

Original Cataloging for SML:

1. Use a previously established NJ18 Cutter or establish a new NJ18 Cutter as appropriate; optionally use LCC
2. If the record will be contributed as pcc, use LCC

Effective Date: 
February 3, 2014