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1. Elements Available in All TEI Documents

The so-called 'Core' module groups together elements which may appear in any kind of text and the tags used to mark them in all TEI documents. This includes:
  • paragraphs
  • highlighting, emphasis and quotation
  • simple editorial changes
  • basic names numbers, dates, addresses
  • simple links and cross-references
  • lists, notes, annotation, indexing
  • graphics
  • reference systems, bibliographic citations
  • simple verse and drama

1.1. Paragraphs

<p> (paragraph) marks paragraphs in prose
  • Fundamental unit for prose texts
  • <p> can contain all the phrase-level elements in the core
  • <p> can appear directly inside <body> or inside <div> (divisions)
<p>It was a cottage, the cottage of a
dream. And by a cottage I mean, not
four plain rooms and a kitchen, but one
surprising room opening into another;
rooms all on different levels and of
different shapes, with delightful places
to bump your head on; open fireplaces;
a large square hall, oak-beamed, where
your guests can hang about after breakfast,
while deciding whether to play
golf or sit in the garden. Yet all so
cunningly disposed that from outside
it looks only a cottage or, at most, two
cottages persuaded into one.</p>

1.2. Highlighting

By highlighting we mean the use of any combination of typographic features (font, size, hue, etc.) in a printed or written text in order to distinguish some passage of a text from its surroundings. For words and phrases which are:
  • distinct in some way (e.g. foreign, archaic, technical)
  • emphatic or stressed when spoken
  • not really part of the text (e.g. cross references, titles, headings)
  • a distinct narrative stream (e.g. an internal monologue, commentary)
  • attributed to some other agency inside or outside the text (e.g. direct speech, quotation)
  • set apart in another way (e.g. proverbial phrases, words mentioned but not used)

1.3. Highlighting Examples

  • <hi> (general purpose highlighting)
    <p>[The rest of this communication is
    omitted owing to considerations of
    space.—<hi rend="sc">Ed</hi>.]</p>
  • <distinct> (linguistically distinct)
    But then I remind myself
    that the Russian ballet is nothing if not
  • Other similar elements include: <emph>, <mentioned>, <soCalled>, <term> and <gloss>

1.4. Quotation

Quotation marks can be used to set off text for many reasons, so the TEI has the following elements:
  • <q> (separated from the surrounding text with quotation marks)
  • <said> (speech or thought)
  • <quote> (passage attributed to an external source)
  • <cit> (groups a quotation and citation)
 <said who="#Celia">I know a lovely tin of potted
   grouse,</said> said Celia, and she went off
to cut some sandwiches. By twelve
o'clock we were getting out of the

1.5. Simple Editorial Changes: <choice> and Friends

  • <choice> (groups alternative editorial encodings)
  • Errors:
    • <sic> (apparent error)
    • <corr> (corrected error)
  • Regularization:
    • <orig> (original form)
    • <reg> (regularized form)
  • Abbreviation:
    • <abbr> (abbreviated form)
    • <expan> (expanded form)

1.6. Choice Example

I profess not to know how women's
</choice> are wooed and won. To me they have
always been <choice>
</choice> of riddle and <choice>

1.7. Additions, Deletions, and Omissions

  • <add> (addition to the text, e.g. marginal gloss)
  • <del> (phrase marked as deleted in the text)
  • <gap> (indicates point where material is omitted)
  • <unclear> (contains text unable to be transcribed clearly)

1.8. Example of <add>, <del>, <gap>, and <unclear>

<add place="left">The Cause</add> The immediate
cause, however, of the prevalence of supernatural

<add place="supra">stories</add>
in these parts, was doubtless owing to the
<unclear reason="blood splatter">vicinity</unclear>
of Sleepy Hollow.
<gap reason="illegible">
 <desc>The rest of this paragraph is covered
   in dried blood.</desc>

1.9. Basic Names

  • <name> (a name in the text, contains a proper noun or noun phrase)
  • <rs> (a general-purpose name or referencing string )

The type attribute is useful for categorizing these, and they both also have key, ref, and nymRef attributes.

1.10. Basic Names Example

<p>The scene opens at a party given by <name
in <name ref="http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Venicetype="place">Venice</name>. </p>
<p>It is when the natural end of the story is reached, and <name xml:id="SIMON">Simon</name> has come into his own and has just been
wedded to his proper affinity, that the structure seems to me to fall
with a crash. I might perhaps, though not without reluctance, have
pardoned an impertinent railway accident which leaves <rs corresp="#SIMON">the young man</rs> apparently crippled for life.</p>

1.11. Addresses

  • <email> (an electronic mail address)
  • <address> (a postal address)
  • <addrLine> (a non-specific address line)
  • <street> (a full street address)
  • <postCode> (a postal (or zip) code)
  • <postBox> (a postal box number)
  • <name> can also be used
  • and the 'namesdates' module extends this with more geographic names

1.12. Basic Address Example

 <name>George Bernard Shaw</name>
 <addrLine>Shaw's Corner</addrLine>
 <settlement>Ayot St Lawrence</settlement>
 <postCode>HE 1 XXX</postCode>

1.13. Basic Numbers and Measures

  • <num> (marks a number of any sort)
  • <measure> (marks a quantity or commodity)
  • <measureGrp> (groups specifications relating to a single object)
  • While <num> has simple type and value attributes, <measure> has type, quantity, unit and commodity attributes

1.14. Number and Measure examples

<l>They went off at a pace I am bound to deplore,</l>
<l>For they did <num value="20">twenty</num> yards in a minute or more</l>
<l>And a yard or <num value="2">two</num> over, a capital score</l>
<l>For Farnaby Fullerton Rigby.</l>
<p>If neither of these values is available, a value of <num>20,35</num>
for ash content can be assumed initially and checked, after the
sampling has been carried out, using one of the methods described in
ISO 13909-7.</p>
It is on these days that we travel to our Castle of Stopes; as the
crow flies, <measure quantity="24140unit="m">fifteen miles</measure>
away. Indeed, that is the way we get to it, for it is a castle in the

1.15. Dates

  • <date> (contains a date in any format and includes a when attribute for a regularised form and a calendar attribute to specify what calendar system)
  • <time> (contains a time in any format and includes a when attribute for a regularised form)
<p>At <time when="09:30:00">9.30 o'clock</time>,
as the fog lifted somewhat, the rescuing steamer
Lyonnesse had sighted the Gothland, fast on the rocks, with a bad
list to starboard, and apparently partly filled with water.</p>
<p>House of Commons, <date when="1914-06-22">Monday, June 22, 1914</date>.</p>

1.16. Simple Linking

  • <ptr> (defines a pointer to another location)
  • <ref> (defines a reference to another location, with optional linking text)
  • Both elements have:
    • target attribute taking a URI reference
    • cRef attribute for canonical referencing schemes
  • If the linking text is able to be generated, <ptr> and <ref> might be used in the same place.

1.17. Simple Linking Example

See <ref target="#Section12">section 12 on page 34</ref>.

See <ptr target="#Section12"/>.

1.18. Lists

  • <list> (a sequence of items forming a list)
  • <item> (one component of a list)
  • <label> (label associated with an item)
  • <headLabel> (heading for column of labels)
  • <headItem> (heading for column of items)

1.19. Simple List Example

The previous slide contained only:
    <gi>list</gi> (a sequence of items forming a list)</item>
    <gi>item</gi> (one component of a list)</item>
    <gi>label</gi> (label associated with an item)</item>
    <gi>headLabel</gi> (heading for column of labels)</item>
    <gi>headItem</gi> (heading for column of items)</item>

1.20. Notes

  • <note> (contains a note or annotation)
  • Notes can be those existing in the text, or provided by the editor of the electronic text
  • A place attribute can be used to indicate the physical location of the note
  • Although notes should usually be encoded where its identifier/mark first appears, notes can also be kept separately and point back to their location with a target attribute

1.21. Note Example

<p>It is not only misfortune that makes strange bedfellows. <note place="foot">By-the-by, it is denied that Sir <name>Joseph Beecham</name> was in any way responsible for the Government's <title>Pills for Earthquakes</title>, by which it was hoped to avert the Irish crisis.</note>

1.22. Graphics

  • <graphic> (indicates the location of an inline graphic, illustration, or figure)
  • <binaryObject> (encoded binary data embedding a graphic or other object)
  • The figure module provides <figure> and <figDesc> for more complex graphics
 <graphic url="images/014.png"/>
 <head>Garden City Washing-day.</head>
 <p>Our sensitive artist insists on a harmonious colour-scheme.</p>
 <figDesc>A bearded man sits in a deckchair and wags his finger at a woman hanging up washing</figDesc>

Dot Porter. Date: July 2009
Copyright University of Oxford