BIBFRAME, short for Bibliographic Framework initiative, is the Library of Congress effort to replace a close to 50 year-old legacy format called MARC with a Linked Data vocabulary. The Library of Congress is the largest governmental library in the United States and is the closest organization Americans have to a national library. BIBFRAME is made up four major classes, Works, Instances, Annotations, and Authorities.



A Work is "… a resource reflecting a conceptual essence of the cataloging resource." source

A Work example in RDF Turtle format for Pride and Prejudice by Jane Austen

<> a bf:Text,
        bf:Work ;
    bf:authorizedAccessPoint "Austen, Jane, 1775-1817. Pride and prejudice / Jane Austen ; with illustrations by Edgard Cirlin.Pride and prejudice",
        "austenjane17751817cirlinedgard1913prideandprejudiceengworktext"@x-bf-hash ;
    bf:classification <>,
        <> ;
    bf:contributor <> ;
    bf:creator <> ;
    bf:language <> ;
    bf:workTitle <> .


An Instance is "… a resource reflecting an individual, material embodiment of the Work." source

An Instance example in RDF Turtle format for Pride and Prejudice by Jane Austen

<> a bf:Instance,
        bf:Monograph ;
    bf:dimensions "21 cm." ;
    bf:extent "435 p. :" ;
    bf:illustrationNote "ill. ;" ;
    bf:instanceOf <> ;
    bf:instanceTitle <> ;
    bf:modeOfIssuance "single unit" ;
    bf:providerStatement "Cleveland : Fine Editions Press, 1946." ;


An Authority is "… a resource reflecting key authority concepts that have defined relationships reflected in the Work and Instance. " source

A Person Authority example in RDF Turtle format for Jane Austen

<> a bf:Person ;
    bf:authorizedAccessPoint "Austen, Jane, 1775-1817." ;
    bf:hasAuthority [ a madsrdf:Authority ;
            madsrdf:authoritativeLabel "Austen, Jane, 1775-1817." ] ;
    bf:label "Austen, Jane, 1775-1817." .


An Annotation is "… a resource that enhances our knowledge about another resource when knowing, minimally, 'who' is doing the annotating is important. source

Example of provenance note for the Pride and Prejudice Work above:

<> a bf:Annotation ;
    bf:annotates <> ;
    bf:changeDate "1998-04-13T12:32" ;
    bf:derivedFrom <> ;
    bf:descriptionConventions <> ;
    bf:descriptionSource <> ;
    bf:generationProcess "DLC transform-tool:2015-07-23-T17:01:00" .

Digital Public Library of America (

Founded in 2011 as a non-profit organization that provides a platform and portal for open and coherent access to the United States digitized cultural heritage that aggregates and harvests content from libraries, musuems, corporations, and other organizations while providing an API for developers to interact directly with their collections.

DPLA's metadata structure and vocabulary is called the Metadata Application Profile that is based on the Europeana Data Model.


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