ECOLM - An Electronic Corpus of Lute Music

Full TabCode - editorial intervention (provisional - not as in original spec and now out of date...)

It is part of the philosophy behind the TabCode that only source text should appear outside of comments, so that a naive parser, ignoring the comments, produces a reasonably accurate version of the original source (but note that system and page breaks are currently encoded within comments). To facilitate the parsing of editorial intervention, therefore, it became necessary to allow structured comments that are machine readable. For forward compatibility with proposed XML versions of the TabCode, these structures are based on mark-up tags.

There are five general comment types that we have classified for the purpose of structuring:

  1. material from the urtext that we wish to flag for some reason but not delete or replace. Examples might be localised notational quirks, such as colouring of notes
  2. material from the urtext that we want to replace with a correction or to delete as extraneous
  3. material in comment text that we would want to be put in main text (i.e. editorial corrections or insertions
  4. material in the comment text that should not be taken out of the comments. An example might be a crossing out in the manuscript - something not desirable either in urtext or edited modes - or a record of an error in a printeed edition
  5. Comments that relate to and/or explain the above (e.g. explaining why there is need for correction or how an error may have occured)

When a comment requires combinations of these, they should be encoded in the order that they appear in this list (to make parsing easier).

For the first two types given above, the general format should be:


with the events to be flagged bounded by two comments, the initial comment containing a < > tag and the final closing the tag with </ >

As in all these cases, the tag’s identifier (i.e. what goes between the brackets will depend on the interpretation required (see section on identifiers [in preparation]).

The next two categories (3 and 4 above) are encoded in a similar way:


The only difference here is that the tags and the tabwords are all enclosed within a single comment, with nothing outside of the comment.

The last category should be treated as a normal comment, following immediately after whatever comment it refers to.