A monograph is a work of writing upon a single subject, usually by a single author. It is often a scholarly essay or learned treatise, and may be released in the manner of a book or journal article. It is by definition a single document that forms a complete text in itself. An author may therefore declare her or his own work to be a monograph by intent, or a reader or critic might define a given text as a monograph for the purpose of analysis. Normally the term is used for a work intended to be a complete and detailed exposition of a substantial subject at a level more advanced than that of a textbook. Monographs form a component of the review of literature in science and engineering.

Librarians consider a monograph to be a nonserial publication complete in one volume (book) or a finite number of volumes. Thus it differs from a serial publication such as a magazine, journal, or newspaper.[1]



Taxonomy (systematic biology)

In biological taxonomy a monograph is a comprehensive treatment of a taxon. Monographs typically revise all known species within a group, add any newly discovered species, and collect and synthesize available information on the ecological associations, geographic distributions, and morphological variations within the group. Example: Lent & Wygodzinsky, 1979, Revision of the Triatominae (Hemiptera, Reduviidae), and their significance as vectors of Chagas' disease. Bulletin of the American Museum of Natural History v. 163, article 3, pp. 125-520.[2]

The first ever monograph of a plant taxon was Robert Morison's 1672 Plantarum Umbelliferarum Distributio Nova, a treatment of the Apiaceae.[3]

United States Food and Drug Administration regulation

In the context of Food and Drug Administration (FDA) regulation, monographs represent published standards by which the use of one or more substances is automatically authorized. For example, the following is an excerpt from the Federal Register: "The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) is issuing a final rule in the form of a final monograph establishing conditions under which over-the-counter (OTC) sunscreen drug products are generally recognized as safe and effective and not misbranded as part of FDA's ongoing review of OTC drug products."[4] Such usage has given rise to the use of the word monograph as a verb, as in "this substance has been monographed by the FDA."

See also


  1. ^ Prytherch, Raymond John, Harrod's librarians' glossary and reference book : a directory of over 10,200 terms, organizations, projects and acronyms in the areas of information management, library science, publishing and archive management, 10th edn (Aldershot, Hants, England ; Burlington, VT: Ashgate, 2005), p. 462.
  2. ^
  3. ^ Vines, Sydney Howard (1913). "Robert Morison 1620—1683 and John Ray 1627—1705". In Oliver, Francis Wall (ed.). Makers of British Botany. Cambridge University Press. p. 22. 
  4. ^ [Federal Register: May 21, 1999 (Volume 64, Number 98)][Rules and Regulations] [Page 27666-27693]From the Federal Register Online via GPO Access [][DOCID:fr21my99-6]

External links

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Look at other dictionaries:

  • Monograph — Mon o*graph, n. [Mono + graph.] A written account or description of a single thing, or class of things; a special treatise on a particular subject of limited range. [1913 Webster] …   The Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • monograph — (n.) treatise on a single subject, 1821, from MONO (Cf. mono ) + graph something written. Earlier was monography (1773) …   Etymology dictionary

  • monograph — treatise, disquisition, dissertation, thesis, *discourse Analogous words: article, paper, *essay …   New Dictionary of Synonyms

  • monograph — ► NOUN ▪ a scholarly written study of a single subject. DERIVATIVES monographic adjective …   English terms dictionary

  • monograph — [män′ə graf΄] n. [ MONO + GRAPH] 1. Historical a treatise on a single genus, species, etc. of plant or animal 2. a book or long article, esp. a scholarly one, on a single subject or a limited aspect of a subject monographic adj …   English World dictionary

  • monograph — A treatise on a particular subject or specific aspect of a subject. [mono + G. graphe, a writing] * * * mono·graph män ə .graf n 1) a learned detailed treatise covering a small area of a field of learning <this monograph covers the development …   Medical dictionary

  • monograph — [[t]mɒ̱nəgrɑːf, græf[/t]] monographs N COUNT: oft N on n A monograph is a book which is a detailed study of only one subject. [FORMAL] ...a monograph on her favourite author, John Masefield …   English dictionary

  • monograph — UK [ˈmɒnəɡrɑːf] / US [ˈmɑnəˌɡræf] noun [countable] Word forms monograph : singular monograph plural monographs a formal piece of writing, or a short book on a particular subject …   English dictionary

  • monograph — I. noun Date: 1821 a learned treatise on a small area of learning; also a written account of a single thing • monographic adjective II. transitive verb Date: 1856 to write a monograph on …   New Collegiate Dictionary

  • monograph — monographer /meuh nog reuh feuhr/, monographist, n. monographic /mon euh graf ik/, monographical, adj. monographically, adv. /mon euh graf , grahf /, n. 1. a treatise on a particular subject, as a biographical study or study of the works of one… …   Universalium

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