Initials of Given Names

Initial(s) for the surname or the given names of a person.


Initials are recorded for purposes of searching or ease of conversion to applications that require initials rather than full names.

This attribute is entirely optional and need not be used by organizations that do not ordinarily record contributor’s initials. The intent is to provide a place to preserve the initials for publishers who do determine the person’s initials editorially and then record that in their data, so this intellectual effort will not be lost.


Best Practice: This attribute is particularly useful in those cases in which a person’s initials cannot be determined algorithmically, i.e., a program could not determine the initials of a given name due to the number, arrangement, or complexity of the name components. (See the examples listed below.)

In most of the examples below, displayed content is present as element content and search content (without punctuation) is present as attribute content. A given publisher may choose to handle punctuation differently.

<surname initials=”Q”>Llanos De La Torre Quiralte</surname>   
<given-names initials=”M”>M</given-names>    

<surname initials=”U”>Usdin</surname>   
<given-names initials=”BT”>B. Tommie</given-names>

<surname initials=”GM” >Gonzalez Martin</surname>   
<given-names initials=”J”>Josquin</given-names>    

<surname initials=”M”>McNair</surname>   
<given-names initials=”KPC”>Kenneth Pritchard Carnu</given-names>    

<surname initials=”B”>Ben Gurion</surname>   
<given-names initials=”D”>David</given-names>    

<surname initials=”B”>Ben-Gurion</surname>   
<given-names initials=”D”>David</given-names>    

<surname initials=”M”>de la Mare</surname>   
<given-names initials=”WJ”>Walter John</given-names>                

<surname initials=”D” >Di Iorio</surname>   
<given-names initials=”S”>Silvio</given-names>

<surname initials=”T”>Toulouse-Lautrec-Monfa, de</surname>   
<given-names initials=”H”>Henri Marie Raymond</given-names>

<surname initials=”L”>Lewis</surname>   
<given-names initials=”CS”>CS</given-names>

<surname initials=”L”>Lewis</surname>   
<given-names initials=”CS”>C.S.</given-names>

Attribute Values

In Elements

Value Meaning
Data characters Text, numbers, or special characters.
Restriction: This attribute may be specified if the element is used.