[sword-devel] SweFolk issues

Chris Little chrislit at crosswire.org
Tue Mar 24 05:51:26 MST 2009

DM Smith wrote:
> The second example with only a single word after the <br/> suggests that 
> they are an artifiact.
> If not, and without looking at the source, I'd suggest that they be put 
> back in either as <l n="2">...</l> (where n is one greater than the line 
> it breaks) or as <lb/>.

The full text of Ps 1.2 in the original markup is (with LFs added, not 
that they clarify much):
<verse value="2" chapter="1"><br />
<poetic indent="1">utan har sin glädje<br />i 
<smallCaps>Herrens</smallCaps> undervisning
<footnote verse="1:2"><footnoteQuote>undervisning</footnoteQuote>Det 
hebreiska ordet "tora" ("lära", "undervisning") betyder allt det som Gud 
lär och undervisar om i sitt ord.</footnote> </poetic>
<poetic indent="1">och begrundar hans ord<br />dag och natt.</poetic>

So the <br />s are near the midpoints of each line in which they appear, 
thought less so in the second line. They definitely do not represent 
poetic line breaks and should definitely not be marked with <l>.

<lb/> is a reasonable analogue, but I still don't feel these are 
meaningful tags. They may represent typesetting directions for a print 
edition, in which case it's specifically a 2-col layout. That kind of 
typographic detail, since it is not meaningful on a computer display, 
should not be carried into our documents.

Believe it or not, we had this discussion at one of the OSIS meetings, 
and the result was the addition of the <lb/> tag for typesetting 
instructions, specifically in the CEV. But that was only because ABS 
wanted to be able to encode the CEV (which has hardcoded linebreaks 
without any reason behind them) in OSIS to serve as a source for their 
publication process.

> I suggest the former if it is within a <l> and <lb/> otherwise. The 
> placement after a small number of words seems to imply formatting. If 
> they are not meaningful at all, then perhaps replace them with a 
> <milestone> element indicating a line break to retain all original 
> markup in some form.

I only deleted <br/>s that appeared within poetic lines. Everything else 
got interpreted in some sense (though in many cases the interpretation 
led to a deletion, e.g. <br/><poetic> -> <l> or <lg><l>). I would be 
amenable to a <milestone/> element, but still suspect these are 
artifacts or typesetting instructions and so should be deleted. I'm not 
as interested in what the document actually contains as I am in what the 
encoders meant for it to contain.

> Regarding poetry in general, I think lines provide little, if any, 
> semantic meaning. (But then again, I failed the poetry part of high 
> school English!) It seems that the sole purpose of poetic markup is to 
> present poetry. (I'd be curious as to where the line breaks would be in 
> a Hebrew scroll.)

Often, poetic lines are used to contain metrical units (generally some 
number of syllables or stressed syllables). I can't say how this in any 
way relates to the Swedish example here, but I suspect they're just 
basing the poetic lines on the cantillation marks in the Hebrew.

Sadly, none of the editions of this Bible prepared by others that I have 
access to even present poetic layout--just verse per line.


More information about the sword-devel mailing list