Lost characters, praenomen


A gap (gap) indicates a point at which material has been omitted in a transcription, whether for editorial reasons described in the TEI header, as part of sampling practice, or because the material is illegible, invisible, or inaudible.

<name> indicates a proper noun or noun phrase.

Where characters have been lost on the original support and there is nothing to indicate to the editor how these should be restored, this is marked up as a lacuna using gap. Note that this is usually an empty element, as it marks a point at which the lacuna occurs, and therefore does not contain any content (see sections VIII.7 for examples in which gap can contain other elements).

For a straightforward lacuna whose extent is known, gap should take the following three attributes:

In cases in which a praenomen has been lost, the quantity of characters missing should be extrapolated (this is usually between 1 and 3 letters). Therefore, in addition to reason and unit, a further two attributes should be used:

gap should also be placed inside <name>, to denote the fact that the editor considers the lacuna to have contained a name rather than another type of word.

Panciera 1991 8.4: [-]

 <gap reason="lostatLeast="1atMost="3"


Transformation using the example EpiDoc P5 stylesheets:

  • Default (Panciera) style: [c. 1 - 3]
  • Duke Databank style: [ -1-3- ]

 <gap reason="lostatLeast="12atMost="15"


Transformation using the example EpiDoc P5 stylesheets:

  • Duke Databank style: [ -12-15- ]

(DDbDP: psi.7.769#1)
Note: PN does not use this convention specifically for praenomina, but does allow ranges of extent for lacunae, e.g. when known to be a number, or length of lacuna is approximate.

Responsibility for this section

  1. Charlotte Tupman, Author
  2. Gabriel Bodard, Author

EpiDoc version: 8.20

Date: 2014-12-04