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1. Names, People, and Places

The TEI P5 chapter now entitled Names, Dates, People, and Places gives recommendations on the encoding of names and of data about names.
  • While there was a similar chapter Names and Dates among the additional tagsets of P3 and P4, the material contained therein has been considerable revised and extended
  • Aimed at the application of text encoding to a various range of fields that can span from history to geography, from onomastic and toponomatiscs to biography and prosopography, this chapter also deals with the definition and standard expression of temporal dimensions

1.1. Recent Improvements

The Names, Dates, People, and Places chapter has been extended to allow for:
  • Refined encoding of text where there are references to persons, places, and organizations
  • Integration with and creation of data structures (e.g. authority files, bio/prosopographical DB, gazetteers) related to persons, places, and organizations
  • Representation of canonical information about names (onomastics, toponomastic)
  • Coherent models across diverse data

1.2. More Specifically...

The main revisions in P5 for this chapter concern:
  • Modelling of data about places at the intersection between history and geography
  • Refined expression of date and time
  • Definition for a canonical name or name-part of any kind
  • Representation of organizations and organizational names
    • Organizations as businesses or institutions, racial or ethnic groupings or political factions

1.3. Reference

The separation and association between names and corresponding referents, being persons or places or any other named entity, is at the core of this module. This is a concept known in philosophy and semiotics as reference theory.
  • We are able to use language to talk about the world because words, at least certain types of words, ‘hook on to’ things in the world. These words include: proper names, natural kind terms, indexicals, and definite descriptions.
  • Proper names are considered by many to be referring terms par excellence
    • syntactically simple expressions that refer, or at least purport to refer, to particular objects/individuals

Adapted from: Reimer, Marga, Reference, The Stanford Encyclopedia of Philosophy (Winter 2007 Edition), Edward N. Zalta (ed.), URL = <http://plato.stanford.edu/archives/win2007/entries/reference/>.

1.4. Example of Reference in Henry III Fine Rolls project

1.5. Linking Names and their Referents (1)

  • In TEI P5 there are new ways to link names of people/places/organizations with information about the entities themselves
  • This is done following the general principle adopted in P5 of using URIs to make explicit connections between textual resources
  • This application of so called ‘stand-off markup’ is particularly useful when
    • the objective of a specific encoding strategy is to study individuals and places mentioned in a certain text
    • the corpus of texts in question is large enough to justify the creation of separate structures to contain data about entities only mentioned -eventually with different referential strings- in the core texts

1.6. Linking Names and their Referents (2)

The name-related elements provided by the namesdates module are members of the att.naming class which provides ways to link the instance of a name with the entity (person, place, organization) being named. The att.naming class provides the following attributes:
provides an external means of locating a full definition for the entity being named, such as a database record key or other token
(reference to the canonical name) provides a means of locating the canonical form (nym) of the names associated with the object named by the element bearing it
(reference) provides an explicit means of locating a full definition for the entity being named by means of a URI

1.7. Example

<p>... <name ref="#jsbachtype="person"> Johann Sebastian Bach </name> was a prolific
German composer ... </p>

1.8. Names as referents (1)

In a text we might find the same person referred to on different occasions in any number of different ways:
...<persName>Clara Schumann</persName>.... <persName>Clara</persName> ....
<persName>Frau Schumann</persName>

All of these names refer to the same entity

We can use an attribute on any naming element to specify which entity is being referenced:
  • key if we are supplying an externally-defined code for the entity
  • ref if we are pointing to a definition of the entity

1.9. Names as referents (2)

For example:-
<persName ref="#CS">Clara Schumann</persName>....
<persName ref="#CS">Clara</persName> ....

<persName ref="#CS">Frau Schumann</persName>
<!-- ... elsewhere -->
<person xml:id="CS">
 <persName xml:lang="de">
  <forename type="first">Clara</forename>
  <forename type="middle">Josephine</forename>
  <surname type="maiden">Wieck</surname>
  <surname type="married">Schumann</surname>

1.10. The thing itself (1)

TEI provides special-purpose elements for maintaining structured information about named entities (as well as their names):
  • <person>, <place>, <event>
  • may be grouped into <listPerson>, <listPlace>, <listEvent>
  • relationships can also be modelled, explicitly using <relation> or implicitly by context
<person xml:id="VM1893">
 <persName xml:lang="ru">Владимир Владимирович Маяковский</persName>
 <persName xml:lang="fr">Wladimir Maïakowski</persName>
 <birth when="1893-07-19">7 July (OS) 1893, <placeName ref="#BGDTxml:lang="en">Baghdati, Georgia</placeName>
 <death when="1930-04-14"/>
 <occupation>Poet and playwright, among the foremost representatives of early-20th century Russian Futurism.</occupation>

1.11. Personal Names

  • <persName> (personal name) a proper noun/phrase referring to a person
  • <surname> a family (inherited) name
  • <forename> a forename, or given name
  • <roleName> a name component indicating a particular role
  • <addName> (additional name) a nickname or alias
  • <nameLink> a connecting phrase or link used within a name (‘van der’)
  • <genName> a generational name component

1.12. <persName> Example

<persName ref="#jsbach">
 <forename type="first">Johann</forename>
 <forename type="middle">Sebastian</forename>
<persName ref="#cjwshumann">
 <forename type="first">Clara</forename>
 <forename type="middle">Josephine</forename>
 <surname type="maiden">Wieck</surname>
 <surname type="married">Schumann</surname>

1.13. Another example

<persName xml:lang="zh-tw">

1.14. Persons

  • <person> provides information about an identifiable individual
    • for example a participant in a language interaction, or a person referred to in a historical source
  • <personGrp> (personal group) a group of individuals
    • treated as a single person for analytic purposes
  • <listPerson> (list of persons) a list of descriptions, each of which provides information about an identifiable person or a group of people
    • for example the participants in a language interaction, or the people referred to in a historical source
  • <relationGrp> (relation group) information about relationships identified amongst people, places, and organizations
    • either informally as prose or as formally expressed relation links

1.15. Example

<listPerson type="composers">
 <person xml:id="kfabel">
  <persName>Karl Friedrich Abel</persName>
 <person xml:id="magricola">
  <persName>Martin Agricola</persName>
 <person xml:id="salkan">
  <persName>Siegfried Alkan</persName>
 <person xml:id="cpebach">
  <persName>Carl Philipp Emanuel Bach</persName>

1.16. Organizations and organizational names

  • <orgName> an organizational name
    • Any named collection of people regarded as a single unit
  • <listOrg> a list of elements, each of which provides information about an identifiable organization
  • <org> information about an identifiable organization such as a business, a tribe, or any other grouping of people

1.17. Place Names

Name components:

  • <placeName> an absolute or relative place name
  • <geogName> geographical name a name associated with some geographical feature
    • such as Windrush Valley or Mount Sinai
    • <geogFeat> geographical feature name contains a common noun identifying some geographical feature contained within a geographic name, such as valley, mount etc.

1.18. Geo-political Place Names

  • <district> the name of any kind of subdivision of a settlement
    • such as a parish, ward, or other administrative or geographic unit
  • <settlement> the name of a settlement such as a city, town, or village
    • identified as a single geo-political or administrative unit
  • <region> the name of an administrative unit such as a state, province, or county
    • larger than a settlement, but smaller than a country
  • <country> the name of a geo-political unit, such as a nation, country, colony, or commonwealth
    • larger than or administratively superior to a region and smaller than a bloc
  • <bloc> the name of a geo-political unit consisting of two or more nation states or countries

1.19. Geo-political Inclusion

1.20. Relative Place Names

  • <offset> that part of a relative temporal or spatial expression which indicates the direction of the offset between the two place names, dates, or times involved in the expression
  • <measure> contains a word or phrase referring to some quantity of an object or commodity, usually comprising a number, a unit, and a commodity name

1.21. Example

<place type="imaginary">
  <placeName>The Pillars of <persName>Hercules</persName>

1.22. Places

New elements to represent data about the places those names can refer to: <listPlace> and <place>
  • Geopolitical inclusion of places can be expressed by nesting and/or by stating explicit relationships: <relationGrp> and <relation>
  • The conceptualization of States, Traits and Events inherited from the section on persons is also applied to places:
    • e.g. of traits: <population>, <climate>, <terrain>
    • the new element <location> is a kind of trait and is used to represent geographical location and geopolitical structures
    • within location, <geo> can be used to express latitude and longitude (recommended datum: WGS84)

1.23. A place example: Taipei region

<place xml:id="BGDT">
 <placeName xml:lang="zh-tw">士林夜市</placeName>
 <placeName xml:lang="en">Shilin</placeName>
 <location type="geopolitical">
 <location type="physical">
  <geo>25.0866 121.5254</geo>

1.24. Places can be nested (unlike people)

<place xml:id="LT">
 <country xml:lang="lt">Lietuva</country>
 <place xml:id="LT-VN">
 <place xml:id="LT-KA">

1.25. Outer Place Example

<place xml:id="leipzigtype="city">
 <placeName nymRef="#leipz">Leipzig</placeName>
  <geo>51.333333 -12.383333</geo>
  <offset>at the confluence of</offset>
   <geogFeat>River</geogFeat> Pleiße</geogName>
   <geogFeat>River</geogFeat> White Elster</geogName>
   <geogFeat>River</geogFeat> Parthe</geogName>
 <location type="geopolitical">
  <region type="state">Saxony</region>
<!-- inner place here -->

1.26. Example: Inner Place:

<place xml:id="tkirchtype="church">
 <placeName xml:lang="denymRef="#thomas #kirche">Thomaskirche</placeName>
 <placeName xml:lang="ennymRef="#thomas #church">St Thomas' Church</placeName>
  <label>Religion</label> Lutheran church</desc>
  <label>Architecture</label> Gothic</desc>
 <event type="consacrationwhen="1496-04-10">
  <desc>The current building was consecrated on 10 April 1496 by the<persName>
    <roleName>Bishop</roleName> of <placeName>Merseburg</placeName>
 <event when="1723">
  <desc>It is most famous as the place where <persName ref="#jsbach">Johann Sebastian Bach</persName> worked as a cantor.</desc>

1.27. Example: or as explicit relation

<relation name="partOfactive="#tkirchpassive="#leipzig"/>

1.28. Sources

As for persons, responsibility and uncertainty about the sources can be asserted by using the attribute class att.editLike

<org type="triberesp="#herodotus">
 <orgName>The Maxyans</orgName>
 <desc>According to Herodotus, they were a west Libyan tribe who said that they were
   descended from the men of Troy.</desc>

1.29. Traits, States, and Events

Information about people, places, and organizations, of whatever type, comprises a series of statements or assertions relating to:
  • characteristics or traits which do not, by and large, change over time
    • <trait> contains a description of some culturally-determined characteristic attributed to a person or place.
  • characteristics or states which hold true only at a specific time
    • <state> contains a description of some ongoing status or quality attributed to a person, place, or organization.
  • events or incidents which may lead to a change of state or, less frequently, trait
    • <event> contains data relating to any kind of significant event associated with a person, place, or organization.
      • where indicates the location of an event by pointing to a <place> element

1.30. Personal Traits

The model.persTraitLike class contains elements describing physical or socially-constructed characteristics or traits of a person. Members of the class comprise the following specific elements:
  • <faith> the faith, religion, or belief set of a person
  • <langKnowledge> (language knowledge) the state of a person's linguistic knowledge, either as prose or by a list of <langKnown> (language known) elements
  • <nationality> an informal description of a person's present or past nationality or citizenship
  • <sex> the sex of a person
  • <age> the age of a person
  • <socecStatus> (socio-economic status) an informal description of a person's perceived social or economic status

1.31. Traits Example

<person xml:id="fmendelssohn">
  <langKnown tag="de">German</langKnown>
  <langKnown tag="en">English</langKnown>
  <langKnown tag="it">Italian</langKnown>
  <langKnown tag="la">Latin</langKnown>

1.32. Personal States

The model.persStateLike class contains elements describing changeable characteristics of a person which have a definite duration, for example occupation, residence, or name. Members of this class comprise:
  • <persName> (personal name) a proper noun or proper-noun phrase referring to a person
  • <occupation> an informal description of a person's trade, profession or occupation
  • <residence> (residence) a person's present or past places of residence
  • <affiliation> an informal description of a person's present or past affiliation with some organization
  • <education> a description of the educational experience of a person
  • <floruit> contains information about a person's period of activity

1.33. States Example

<person xml:id="fmendelssohn2">
 <education>He began taking piano lessons from his mother when he was six, and at seven was tutored by Marie Bigot in Paris. From 1817 he studied composition with Carl Friedrich Zelter in Berlin. Zelter introduced Mendelssohn to his friend and correspondent, the elderly Goethe. He later took lessons from the composer and piano virtuoso Ignaz Moscheles. Besides music, Mendelssohn's education included art, literature, languages, and philosophy.</education>

1.34. Personal Events

The model.persEventLike class contains elements describing specific events in a person's history, for example birth, marriage, or appointment. These are not characteristics of an individual, but often cause an individual to gain such characteristics, or to enter a new state. Members of this class comprise:
  • <birth> information about a person's birth, such as its date and place
  • <death> information about a person's death, such as its date and place
  • <event> information about an event in a person's life

1.35. Example

<person xml:id="rwagner">
 <persName>Richard Wagner</persName>
 <event type="marriagewhen="1836-11-24">
  <desc>On 24 November 1836, Wagner married
     actress <persName>Christine Wilhelmine
   <forename full="abb">Minna</forename> Planer </persName>. </desc>
 <event type="move">
  <desc>They moved to the city of <placeName>Riga</placeName>, then in the
  <bloc>Russian Empire</bloc>.</desc>

1.36. Personal Relationships

  • <relationGrp> (relation group) provides information about relationships identified amongst people, places, and organizations
  • <relation> (relationship) describes any kind of relationship or linkage amongst a specified group of participants
    supplies a name for the kind of relationship of which this is an instance
    identifies the 'active' participants in a non-mutual relationship, or all the participants in a mutual one
    supplies a list of participants amongst all of whom the relationship holds equally
    identifies the ‘passive’ participants in a non-mutual relationship

1.37. Example

<person xml:id="jsbach">
 <persName>Johann Sebastian Bach</persName>
<person xml:id="cdbach">
 <persName>Catharina Dorothea Bach</persName>
<person xml:id="ghbach">
 <persName>Gottfried Heinrich Bach</persName>
<relationGrp type="childrensubtype="first-marriage">
 <relation name="parentactive="#jsbachpassive="#cdbach"/>
<relationGrp type="childrensubtype="second-marriage">
 <relation name="parentactive="#jsbachpassive="#ghbach"/>

1.38. Nyms

The elements <listNym> and <nym> have been introduced to define canonical name or name-part of any kind
  • <nym>
    • can contain model.entryParts (e.g. <form>, <orth>, <etym>) and may also include a number of other <nym>s
    • in addition to global attributes and att.typed, it includes the attribute parts to point to constituent <nym>s
  • <listNym> a list of canonical names
  • nymRef has been added to the attribute class att.naming to refer to the canonical name

1.39. Example

<nym xml:id="lipsk">
 <etym>From <lang>Slavic</lang>; it means <gloss>settlement where the lime trees
     stand</gloss>. </etym>

2. Dates and Periods

The support for dates in TEI P5 has concentrated on enabling greater use of international standards (W3C and ISO)
  • <date> contains a date in any format
  • <time> contains a phrase defining a time of day in any format

2.1. Example

<place xml:id="leipzig-univ">
 <placeName>University of Leipzig</placeName>
 <event type="foundation">
  <desc>The university was founded on <date when="1409-12-02">December 2, 1409</date>.

2.2. W3C Date Formats

Thanks to the mapping to W3C (att.datable.w3c) and ISO date formats, automatic processing and validation of expression of dates and times are now allowed

att.datable.w3c provides attributes for normalization of elements that contain datable events using the W3C datatypes
supplies the value of a date or time in a standard form
specifies the earliest possible date for the event in standard form
specifies the latest possible date for the event in standard form
indicates the starting point of the period in standard form
indicates the ending point of the period in standard form

The W3C standard form for dates is YYYY-MM-DD.

2.3. Example

<place xml:id="leipzig-univ2">
 <placeName>University of Leipzig</placeName>
 <event type="openingnotBefore="1409-09-09">
  <desc>The <foreign xml:lang="la">Alma mater Lipsiensis</foreign> opened in 1409,
     after it had been officially endorsed by Pope Alexander V in his Bull of
     Acknowledgment on (September 9 of that year).</desc>

2.4. ISO Date Fomats

For some uses the subset of ISO 8601 which is used by the W3C might not be enough, so the TEI provides an optional att.datable.iso class to give the following attributes if needed:
the value of a date or time in a standard form
the earliest possible date for the event
the latest possible date for the event
the starting point of the period
the ending point of the period
the length of this element in time

The ISO standard, for example, allows specifying dates and durations with a precision by omitting some digits to the left, while the W3C datatypes require in most cases conformance to a stricter precision.

2.5. Example

<p>He arrived <time when="12:00:00">around noon</time>. He arrived <time when-iso="12">around noon</time>.</p>

2.6. Time Periods and Relative Chronology

Time periods and relative chronology can also be defined under <encodingDesc> and <classDecl>.

<taxonomy xml:id="periods">
 <category xml:id="hellenistic">
Hellenistic</ref>. Commonly treated as <date notBefore="-0323notAfter="-0031"/>. </catDesc>
<p> The city was built near a marble quarry which was extensively exploited in the <date period="#hellenistic">Hellenistic</date> and <date period="#roman"> Roman</date> periods.</p>

Dot Porter. Date: July 2009
Copyright University of Oxford