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A note on terminology Gilbert, Sullivan, Carte and other Victorian era British composers and librettists, as well as the contemporary British press and literature, called works of the sort that Gilbert and Sullivan produced "comic operas" to distinguish them from the continental European operettas that they wished to displace. Most of the specialist literature on Gilbert and Sullivan since that time has referred to these works as "operas" (e.g., Jacobs, Preface), though some general books on music prefer "operetta". The Gilbert and Sullivan WikiProject has used the term "opera" consistently throughout the G&S-related articles within its scope.