The way I explain this to people is that the relationship designator always spells out the relationship between the body in the 1XX and the body in the 5XX.  It is not used to relate two 5XXs.

So the relationship between the two bodies that merge is reciprocal and "Mergee" is used.  The relationship between each of the earlier names to the merged result is "Product of merger" in one direction and "Component of merger" in the other.

Adam Schiff
University of Washington Libraries

From: Program for Cooperative Cataloging <[log in to unmask]> on behalf of Benjamin A Abrahamse <[log in to unmask]>
Sent: Tuesday, September 15, 2020 11:57 AM
To: [log in to unmask] <[log in to unmask]>
Subject: CB merges

So for all it’s worth I did look at the PCC-List archives because I remembered this coming up before, but the discussion does not seem to have concluded in a definitive way.

I’m trying to figure out how best to handle the merging of two corporate bodies to form a new one. In this case the evidence from the sources is extremely clear (literally a press release saying, “Body A and Body B have merged to form Body C”) so I’m just a little puzzled how to handle the RDA relationship designators.

In Appendix K we have a relationship designator, “Mergee” (reciprocal form: “Mergee”) as well as “Product of merger” (reciprocal form: “Component of merger”). Because it’s not clearly spelled out in the appendix, is the intention here that we should use the first term to relate the two merging bodies to each other, and the second to relate the merging bodies to the new body?


Body A

Mergee: Body B

Product of merger: Body C


Body B

Mergee: Body A

Product of merger: Body C


Body C

Component of merger: Body A

Component of merger: Body B


In viewing the archives I found an interesting mention from 2014 that SCT suggested we don’t use “merge” language and instead rely on just “Predecessor” and “Successor”. That was in reference to the PCC Guidelines for the Application of Relationship Designators in NACO Records” but that language no longer seems to appear in the document (as of the 2019 version.)





Ben Abrahamse

Metadata Librarian

MIT Libraries

[log in to unmask]