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The catalogue includes item level descriptions of individual documents of objects. It also includes collection or fonds level descriptions and descriptions for other levels of description as follows.

Fonds. This originally meant “all the files” and refers to the whole of the records – that is a description for the entire collection of records organically created during the course of a person’s or organisation’s function and activities.

Sub-fonds. The highest sub-division which corresponds with the administrative sub-division within the organisation, or reflecting a type of record.

Series. Records arranged in accordance with a filing system or maintained as a unit because they result from the same accumulation or activity, have the same form or have another relationship arising out of their creation or use.

Sub-series A sub-division of a series, for a more complex organisation or collection

File An organised group of documents put together for use by the creator. This is usually the basic unit with a record series e.g. a file of documents, a bundle of deeds.

Item Smallest intellectually indivisible archival unit e.g. letter, photograph

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