A novelty search is a search of the prior art carried out by the patent-granting authority relating to an invention described in a patent application. The prior art is formed by what has been made public before the filing date (or the invoked priority date) of the patent application. The novelty search is a search of the literature, and particularly, though not exclusively, the patent literature. In the Netherlands there are two types of novelty search; a novelty search of the national type and a novelty search of the international type. Both types of novelty search are carried out in the patent literature available worldwide; the difference is that the results of a novelty search of the international type are recognized in the case of later European or international patent applications.