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Considerable attention has been paid, in this journal and elsewhere, to each of two aspects of the use of literature. One of these is the relative decrease in use of material as it ages (‘obsolescence’) which has been discussed by Brookes and many others. The other aspect is the extent to which the use of material tends to be concentrated in a few titles (‘Bradford's Law of scattering’), which has been treated by Bradford, Leimkuhler, Brookes, and Fairthorne.

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