#22 Manuscript encoding

Hilde Bře

Henrik Ibsen's Writings has made several changes and
additions to the TEI DTDs regarding the encoding of
manuscript changes and manuscript phenomena. In the
following we wish to present some of the modifications
and encourage the inclusion of these themes in the P5
revision discussion.

- <clarification>

We've created a new element to record the clarification
phenomenon in manuscripts. Ibsen and his copyists some
times clarify words or letters either writing upon the
already written word/letters or by repeating the
word/letters offline. We encode these instances of
repeating the same for the purpose of clarification, like

<clarification hand="HI"
<clarification hand="HI"

We believe this is a well known phenomenon for
manuscript transcribers, and we think it would be a
useful addition in a revised chapter on "Transcription of
Primary Sources".

- TEI elements for manuscript changes

We've made it possible to include almost all kinds of
elements in <app> (i.e. in <lem>/<rdg> of course),
<add>, <del> etc. and to use <app>, <add>, <del>,
<gap/> etc. almost globally in our manuscript
transcriptions in order to record manuscript changes in a
way that reflects our view of the changes. E.g. we allow
<div> inside <add> and <del> to make possible the
inclusion or deletion of a complete scene, thus reflecting
the change in the document structure more clearly.

- The hand attribute

We have allowed the hand attribute in <app>, <hi> and
<emph>. Including hand in <app> makes it unnecessary
to use hand both in <add> and <del> when another
hand has revised the text of the manuscript. Using the
hand attribute in <hi> (and similarly in <emph>) allows
us to record e.g. the red pencil underlining throughout a
manuscript otherwise written in black ink.

- A new element for substitutions/revision of the <app>

The last years there have been discussions on the TEI-L
and elsewhere of the need to modify and revise the
<app> element to make it more useful for manuscript
changes. Several alternatives have been discussed. At
Henrik Ibsen's Writings we have also discussed this, and
although we have managed to use the excisting <app>
element for the manuscript changes in our material
(though with some modifications of what <lem> and
<rdg> can contain and the inclusion of some attributes),
we would like to encourage the expansion of this part of
the chapter on "Transcription of Primary Sources", at
least an element for encoding substitutions should be
included. We dislike the double role of the <app>
structure, and would feel better having one structure for
manuscript changes and one for the critical apparatus.
Our use of the <app> element for manuscript changes
has resulted in us constructing a new element, <tcApp>,
for our critical apparatus and text critical notes.

Please contact Hilde Bře (hilde.boe@ibsen.uio.no) at
Henrik Ibsen's Writings, if you have any questions or


  • Lou Burnard
    Lou Burnard

    • labels: --> TEI: New or Changed Element
  • Syd Bauman
    Syd Bauman

    • priority: 5 --> 3
  • Lou Burnard
    Lou Burnard

    Logged In: YES
    Originator: NO

    I apologise for the delay in responding to this ticket, which raises several distinct issues.

    1. new element <clarification> for a specific kind of manuscript addition
    2. changes in use of the <app> element
    3. make the @hand attribute available on <app>, <hi>, and <emph>

    (1) seems to me to be an interesting suggestion that should however be looked at in the context of a complete overhaul of the Physical Transcription module. This is unlikely to get done for P5 1.0.

    (2) some changes have been made in the content model of <app>, following suggestions from others: however your basic proposal to distinguish its use in manuscript transcription from its use in transcription of critical apparatus has not yet been debated; it should be.

    (3) this seems simple enough. I think the way to it would be to define a new attribute class, almost the same as the existing att.ascribed class. This could easily be done for P5.

    • assigned_to: nobody --> louburnard
  • Lou Burnard
    Lou Burnard

    • assigned_to: louburnard --> jcummings
  • Lou Burnard
    Lou Burnard

    • status: open --> closed
  • Lou Burnard
    Lou Burnard

    Logged In: YES
    Originator: NO

    This ticket concerns several issues, some of which have subsequently
    been resolved or superceded. Please resubmit a new ticket explaining
    the need for a <gi>clarification</gi> element, though, as this has not
    so far been addressed.