Name Authority File

The Name Authority File (PND ) is a standard file of individuals who served mainly for the development of literature in libraries. The German National Library and all German and Austrian library networks they led cooperatively by 2012.

For each person recorded in the persons name file there is a record to which reference can be made using a unique identifier, the PND number. The PND includes both single persons so-called individualized records with additional information (especially life data, occupation and pseudonyms ) and non - individualized records that contain only one usable for multiple persons name heading.

End of April 2012, the PND in the common authority file (GND ) has risen.

Application and motivation

The person entries of PND should enable the successful search for people in the German National, as well as the holdings of other libraries, archives and museums in the entire German -speaking world; without PND would have been possible just search for names with the problem of namesakes and spelling variations. The PND contains about 3.6 million records, but which are currently (as of July 2011) only about 1.8 million people individualized sentences.

For the libraries, there were three main reasons to build a common personal name file:

History and Development

German Library Institute

After initial considerations, starting from a Franco-German meeting of experts in May 1987 at the German Library Institute (DBI ), decided the " steering committee of the DFG for ZDB and regional location evidence " in May 1988, the establishment of a working group. However, the Working Group met with rather subdued interest in the library networks; urgent help would be a heading for "difficult names, such as names, for which a transliteration into Latin is necessary, and old names."

A first Personennamendatei was built in 1989 by the old stock acquisition converted title data of the Bavarian State Library and the SUB to the German Library Institute. Administration of the name was in a IBAS database that all libraries was both online and in Microficheausgabe available. This " PND DBI " containing 1993:

  • Name until 1850 Bavarian State Library conversion from old stock
  • Name to 1940 from old stock conversion Goettingen
  • Personal names of antiquity ( PAN)
  • Personal names in the Middle Ages (PMA )

The editorial staff was housed at the Bavarian State Library.

The main tasks of this PND were the uniform heading the name until 1850 and the acceleration of other old stock acquisitions. The use of the PND DBI was in all projects of the old stock acquisition, which was funded by the Deutsche Forschungsgemeinschaft, prescribed.

The German library

Beginning of the 1990s recommended that the Library Committee of the German Research Foundation ( DFG) to expand the task and the transfer " PND DBI " in an authority file under the auspices of the German National Library, which at that time still under the name " The German Library " (DDB ) changed its name to transfer. From 1995 to 1998, the introduction of a general Name Authority File (PND ) as a project of the DFG has funded.

While initially focused on the development of literature in the foreground, the PND was equally used later in archives and museums for the description of archival materials and exhibits. In November 1997, the personal data of the central file of the autographs (CCC ) of the Berlin State Library were incorporated into the database. Another source were the names of the persons subject authority file that were included in the PND in March 1998.

2008, the personal data of the German Music Archive ( DMA) were integrated into the general Name Authority File. Dialogue with libraries reported at the time: "As the largest standard dataset of the DMA about 110,000 individualized sets of personal data and about 8,000 non- individualized personal names sets in the nationwide PND were integrated. In the GKD almost 70,000 normalized data sets were recorded for music corporations. "


In addition to individualized records that uniquely identify a person, there are records that contain only one name, that can apply to more than one person. Each record contains the identifier (or key ) is a unique number that PND number. Whether it is an individualized record is not apparent from the PND number as the individualization could take place even after their plant by the name, was assigned, for example by adding a year of birth, a concrete person.

As the number quota was originally the range 10000000 to 14999999 ( without check digit, ie, with check digit nine characters) reserved the first digit was therefore always a first result of massive recordings of previously locally held personal legacy of regional networks in advance of the introduction of the GND this area, however, was exhausted. Since April 2011, the numbers were assigned consecutively along with those of other types of records on the fly. You are now ten digits (and still start with 1).

There are awarded that are valid according to the modulo 11 method, which is also used in the case of ISBN numbers only. The last digit is a check digit, which is calculated as follows: Last digit is the remainder of: 1 * 1 Location 2 * 2 Location 3 * 3 Location ... 9 * 9 Point divided by 11, it is to be filled on the left with zeros until the number of digits results with test code 10.

Heading to the persons name in the PND, the rules for alphabetical cataloging (RAK ) were used. For the exchange of authority records existed a private Machine exchange format for libraries (MAB ).

Example of an individualized authority record

PND record to Ringelnatz in the catalog of the German National Library ( DNB):

  • Boetticher, Hans [ Real power. Name]
  • Boetticher, Hans
  • Hester, Gustav [ pseudonym ]
  • Meyer, Pinko [ pseudonym ]
  • Dörry, Fritz [ pseudonym ]


With the other two big German authority files of the Joint Body Authority File ( GKD ) and the Subject Authority File ( SWD), the PND end of April 2012 in the common authority file (GND ) was merged. Until then, the three files were available online and on a fee-based standard data DVD -ROM. Initially, the standard files were spread on microfiche.

In the project Virtual International Authority File ( VIAF ) the PND through a concordance file with other national authority files was virtually connected to an international authority file. (This task is now taking the GND. )

Comparable normative data for individuals are: