Using the Personography Spreadsheet

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Introduction

The personography spreadsheet is designed to provide a simple, efficient, and consistent way for external contributors to record historical and literary names that are not currently entered in our PERS1.xml database. Before using this spreadsheet, please familiarize yourself with the following instructions and suggestions.

What is PERS1.xml?

Throughout the spreadsheet and this document, you will encounter numerous references to PERS1.xml or, informally, PERS. PERS1.xml is the name of the .xml document that MoEML uses to store all persons referenced on our website. Three types of persons are included in this database: literary persons, historical persons, and MoEML contributors; as external contributor, you will likely only encounter the former two types. Each person added to PERS1.xml is assigned a unique @xml:id, which is used in document markup. Once you have finished filling out this spreadsheet, a MoEML encoder will add your data to PERS1.xml and tell you what @xml:id each name has been assigned. You may then use the assigned @xml:ids to add encoding notes to your contribution.

Historical Persons

Historical persons are non-fictitious individuals born before 1660 who are referenced in primary or secondary sources pertaining to early modern London. This rule means that Henry II, the medieval English monarch, may be included in the PERS1.xml database as a historical person, but Stephen Greenblatt, though we may encounter his name in secondary sources, is not.

Literary Persons

Literary persons are fictitious individuals or fictitious representations of non-fictitious individuals who appear in the literature of early modern London. Literary persons can be original characters conceived of by early modern authors or mythological persons, characters, or beings evoked and/or reinterpreted by early modern authors. Please note that, in some cases, historical figures will appear as fictional characters in literary works, such as King Richard III in the eponymous Shakespeare play. In such cases, these characters are tagged as literary persons.

Researching Biographical Information

Entering names into PERS1.xml requires some biographical research. As an external contributor, we assume that you are very familiar with this type of research and we encourage you to bring your unique skills and knowledge to our project.

Resources for Research

Familiarizing Yourself with the Spreadsheet

The spreadsheet functions as a simple text-based form on one single sheet. Knowledge or use of Excel formulae and functions is not required. You will notice that the spreadsheet is divided horizontally into five sections: Name Information, Categorization, Life Dates, Description, and Additional Information. Below each of these section headings are subheadings. Each subheading corresponds with a spreadsheet column in which relevant information should be entered.

Accessing the Spreadsheet

You will receive the spreadsheet as an email attachment from a MoEML team member. The file will be formatted as a .xlsx file and therefore will be compatible with post-2003 versions of Microsoft Office, iWork, OpenOffice, and LibreOffice. If you are using an earlier version of one of these programs, you may email MoEML Encoder Tye Landels (tlandels@uvic.ca) to receive the spreadsheet in a different format. Additionally, the spreadsheet can be sent to you as an online Google document at your request.
Please save the attached spreadsheet onto your computer in a secure location with an easily searchable name. Note that the document content and structure is the creative property of MoEML. As our project is committed to open scholarship, we welcome and encourage you to use the spreadsheet in your own research so long as you acknowledge The Map of Early Modern London.

Sample Entries

For your reference, there are four sample entries already entered in the spreadsheet; do not delete these entries as they may prove useful at any point when you are using the spreadsheet.

Instructional Comments

There are instructional comments for each subheading integrated into the spreadsheet. To access these comments, simply place your cursor over the subheading about which you would like more information. For example, if I were unsure what to enter for Sex, I would scroll over the Sex column for an instructional comment that reads For sex, 0=unknown, 1=male, 2=female, and 3=other.

Using the Spreadsheet

The following section provides a step-by-step guide for filling out the spreadsheet. Much of the information in this section can also be found in the comments integrated into the spreadsheet.

Entering Data

Make sure that all data you enter is precise and accurate, and follows MoEML’s editorial style guidelines. Because this spreadsheet will be used to automatically generate XML code, it is important that there are no inconsistencies in spacing and/or capitalization.
Before you enter any information about a person into the spreadsheet, first make sure that the person is not already in MoEML’s PERS1.xml database. This information can be obtained by using the Ctrl+F function to search MoEML’s List of @xml:ids Used in the Document Collection for a person’s name.

Name Information

The first section of the spreadsheet, Name Information, asks you to provide all the information we need to give the person the right name. This section consists of eight subheadings, each representing a different component of a name. It is important that we separate the components of a name because they eventually will be tagged using distinct TEI tags. You will find that, in most cases, a person’s name does not include all possible components. If a particular column does not apply to a particular person’s name, leave the corresponding cell blank. The following is a list of possible name components with descriptions.
Please note that, because the spelling of early modern names is so inconsistent, we constantly need to make editorial decisions regarding which spelling of a name to use in our database. Generally speaking, MoEML uses formal and modernized spellings of names. If you are unsure about how to spell a particular name, please pass this duty onto the database manager. You may do so by adding this information to the Comments column of the spreadsheet (column X).

Leading Epithet

A descriptive phrase that often precedes the person’s name, such as Good King Wenceslas. A leading epithet will often consist of a single adjective or a hyphenated adjective.

Role Name

A title that indicates the role, often royal or religious. that a person plays in society, such as Good King Wenceslas. A role name should not be confused with a leading epithet. The former is often objective in nature, whereas the latter could be considered subjective.

Forename

A formal and modernized spelling of a person’s given name. If you are entering the name of an allegorical character or mythological character identified by a single name, this name counts as a forename. For example, if you were creating a PERS entry for the allegorical character of Love, then the noun Love counts as a forename.

Middle Name

A formal and modernized spelling of a person’s second given name. If a person has more than one middle name, enter both in the cell provided. Moreover, if we know only the middle name for a person, enter this name in the forename cell.

Name Link

Names of French, Dutch, noble English, or noble German origins often include a possessive preposition between a person’s forename and surname; we tag this preposition as a name link. For example, consider the italicized preposition in Allen de la Zouche.

Surname

A formal and modernized spelling of a person’s last name. You will need to identify the most common or refutable spelling of a person’s surname.

Generation Number

A number expressed in uppercase roman numerals that often follows a person’s proper name, identifying the generation of that name. Most names that include a generation number are royal names, such as Elizabeth I.

Trailing Epithet

A descriptive phrase that often follows a person’s name, such as Ivan the Terrible. A trailing epithet often consists of the combined with an adjective functioning as a noun.

Categorization

The second section of the spreadsheet, Categorization, asks you to provide the information that allows us to sort people meaningfully. This information will enable complex research questions in the future. This section consists of two subheadings, representing the two main ways in which we classify people in our database: by type and by sex. Unlike the Name Information section, it is crucial that both columns in the Categorization contain data.

Type

Person types were described previously in Section II of this document. In this column, use a number 1 to classify historical persons and 2 to classify literary persons.

Sex

We recognize the issues that can emerge when trying to classify persons into discrete sex types. Nonetheless, our project works within the framework of the TEI and therefore is limited in its ability to represent sex and gender complexities. Currently, we use a number 0 to classify unknown sex (a classification that is particularly useful for mythological or allegorical characters with no clear expression of gender), a number 1 to classify male sex, a number 2 to classify female sex, and a number 3 to classify other sex (a classification that might include transsexual or hermaphroditic sex types).

Life Dates

The third section of the spreadsheet, Life Dates, asks you to provide information about a person’s birth and death. This section consists of six subheadings, each contributing to defined representations of birth and death. In many cases, you will know information about a person’s death but not his/her birth or, conversely, information about a person’s birth but not his/her death. In such cases, leave the columns pertaining to the unknown information empty.

Date of Birth

Enter the person’s date of birth in ISO standard format (YYYY-MM-DD). If you lack data about a particular date component, insert 00 in place of the unknown date component. For example, we know that King John was born in 1167 but we do not know the month or date; his date of birth is then represented as 1167-00-00. There may also be situations wherein we know a person’s date of baptism but not his/her date of birth. In such an instance, please enter the date of baptism in this column with a comment in [square brackets] indicating that it is a baptism date. For example, we do not know Christopher Marlowe’s date of birth; we only that he was baptized in 1564. Therefore, Marlowe’s date of birth is represented as [1564-00-00].

Birth Precision

Indicate how precise your data for date of birth is. Insert a value of either low or high in this column. Unless you are able to identify a specific calendar day in which the person was born, it is likely that your birth date will be low in precision. This column must be filled in if you supply date of birth data.

Birth Certainty

Indicate how certain your data for date of birth is. Insert a value of either low or high in this column. If you encounter conflicting or inconsistent data pertaining to a person’s date of birth, the certainty of your information is likely low. The opposite is true if you encounter consistent information. This column must be filled in if you supply date of birth data.

Date of Death

Enter the person’s date of death in ISO standard format (YYYY-MM-DD). If you lack data about a particular date component, insert 00 in place of the unknown date component.

Death Precision

Indicate how precise your data for date of death is. Insert a value of either low or high in this column. Unless you are able to identify a specific calendar day in which the person died, it is likely that your birth date will be low in precision. This column must be filled in if you supply date of death data.

Death Certainty

Indicate how certain your data for date of death is. Insert a value of either low or high in this column. If you encounter conflicting or inconsistent data pertaining to a person’s date of death, the certainty of your information is likely low. The opposite is true if you encounter consistent information. This column must be filled in if you supply date of death data.

Description

The fourth section of the spreadsheet, Description, asks you to supply information that will point our readers to resources and sources. This section consists of six subheadings, each contributing to a qualitative understanding of the person.

Biographic Statement

A sentence or two that summarizes the person’s historical or literary significance. Your summary should be short: the point of this statement is not to provide a biography, but to identify the person in the context of early modern London. For historical persons, simply list the person’s social roles and significant corresponding dates; for example Edward Lloyd’s biographical statement reads Coffee-house keeper, publisher, and namesake of Lloyd’s Insurance. If you find yourself writing a biographical statement for a former lord mayor of London, remember that the title lord mayor is not capitalized unless it is functioning as a proper noun; for example, Sir John Robinson’s biographical statement reads First baronet, merchant, and financier; lord mayor of London in 1631-32. For literary persons, list the text in which they appear and their role therein; for example, the biographical statement for Troya-Nova reads Allegorical character in The Triumph of re-united Britania who personifies the geographic area and settlement of present-day London.

Link to Related Resource

An http:// address that links to an external webpage that provides an article on the person. Note that related resources must only consist of http:// addresses belonging to Oxford Dictionary of National Biography, Mayors and Sheriffs of London, British History Online, British Book Trade Index, Encyclopedia Britannica Academic Edition, Records of London’s Livery Companies Online, or Wikipedia (links to these websites can be found in section III). If there is an online resource that you think could be added to this list, please write to MoEML’s Assistant Project Director, Kim McLean-Fiander (krdmf@uvic.ca).

Related Resource Acronym

The MoEML-defined acronym for the related resource that was used in the previous column. Acronyms are ODNB for Oxford Dictionary of National Biography, MASL for Mayors and Sheriffs of London, BHO for British History Online, BBTI for British Book Trade Index, BAE for Encyclopedia Britannica Academic Edition, ROLLCO for Records of London’s Livery Companies Online, and Wiki for Wikipedia.

Link to 2nd Related Resource

An http:// address that links to an external webpage that provides another article on the person. Note that the 2nd related resources must only consist of http:// addresses belonging to Oxford Dictionary of National Biography, Mayors and Sheriffs of London, British History Online, British Book Trade Index, Encyclopedia Britannica Academic Edition, Records of London’s Livery Companies Online, or Wikipedia (links to these websites can be found in section III). If there is an online resource that you think could be added to this list, please write to MoEML’s Assistant Project Director, Kim McLean-Fiander (krdmf@uvic.ca).

2nd Related Resource Acronym

The MoEML-defined acronym for the related resource that was used in the previous column. Acronyms are ODNB for Oxford Dictionary of National Biography, MASL for Mayors and Sheriffs of London, BHO for British History Online, BBTI for British Book Trade Index, BAE for Encyclopedia Britannica Academic Edition, ROLLCO for Records of London’s Livery Companies Online, and Wiki for Wikipedia.

MLA Citation

If a person’s spreadsheet entry required a notable amount of research, cite your source(s). Use your discretion to decide whether this component is necessary or not for each particular entry. Generally speaking, if you are unable to provide any related resources for a historical name, then you should provide an MLA citation for your source.

Additional Information

The fifth and final section of the spreadsheet, Additional Information, asks you to provide anything else you want us to know. In this section there is only one subheading entitled Comments. The purpose of the Comments column is for you to leave additional information and clarifications for the database manager. The more information you are able to provide about your entry into the spreadsheet, the better the data can be used, updated, and maintained.

Submitting the Spreadsheet

Once you have finished entering a set of names into the spreadsheet, please send the now-complete .xlsx file as an email attachment to Tye Landels (tlandels@uvic.ca). Along with the Assistant Project Director, he will review your work, follow-up on any flagged content, and assign each name an @xml:id unique to the MoEML document collection. Once this work is complete, he will send you an email containing the @xml:ids for each person on the spreadsheet. You may then use the new @xml:ids to add encoding notes to your contribution.

Tagging People in Your Document

Once you have received an email from MoEML listing the new @xml:ids for the names on your spreadsheet, you are asked to tag (add an encoding note for) all the textual references to people in your document. To do this, use the <name> element with a @ref value of "mol:" followed by the @xml:id that links to that person’s entry in the personography database. Consider the following template:
<name ref="mol:XXXX">textual reference to person</name>
("XXXX" represents the @xml:id attribute value for the <person> element in the PERS1.xml file.) Suppose that I want to tag the reference to Phillip Henslowe in the following sentence: The diary, written by Henslowe, is considered very valuable to modern-day scholars. To do this, I would first determine the @xml:id for Phillip Henslowe, which happens to be HENS1. Having determined this @xml:id, I would then use it to tag the reference to Phillip Henslowe as follows:
The diary, written by <name ref="mol:HENS1">Henslowe</name>, is considered very valuable to modern-day scholars.
A document entitled Add Encoding Notes to Your Document will soon be added to MoEML’s Contribution Guide.

Conclusion

This concludes the guide to using MoEML’s personography spreadsheet. Thank you for your interest in and contributions to our project. As we are still only just beginning to accept contributions from external contributors, we enthusiastically welcome your feedback on this instructional guide and the procedures it outlines.

Contact Information

If you have any questions, comments, or suggestions related to the spreadsheet, please contact
Tye Landels
Encoder and Research Assistant, MoEML
tlandels@uvic.ca
+1 250 216 5171
If you have any questions regarding biographical research or practices related to the PERS1.xml database, please contact
Kim McLean-Fiander
Assistant Project Director, MoEML
krdmf@uvic.ca
+1 250 853 3878
Last modification: 2016-05-27 14:37:29 -0700 (Fri, 27 May 2016) (tlandels)
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MLA citation:

Landels-Gruenewald, Tye. “Using the Personography Spreadsheet.” The Map of Early Modern London. Ed. Janelle Jenstad. Victoria: University of Victoria. Web. 20 November 2017. <http://mapoflondon.uvic.ca/PERS_spreadsheet.htm>.

Chicago citation:

Landels-Gruenewald, Tye. n.d. “Using the Personography Spreadsheet.” The Map of Early Modern London. Ed. Janelle Jenstad. Victoria: University of Victoria. Accessed November 20, 2017. http://mapoflondon.uvic.ca/PERS_spreadsheet.htm.

APA citation:

Landels-Gruenewald T. (n.d.). Using the Personography Spreadsheet. In J. Jenstad (Ed.), The Map of Early Modern London. Retrieved November 20, 2017, from http://mapoflondon.uvic.ca/PERS_spreadsheet.htm

TEI citation:

<bibl> <author><persName><surname>Landels-Gruenewald</surname>, <forename>Tye</forename></persName></author> (<date>n.d.</date>). <title level="a">Using the Personography Spreadsheet</title>. In <editor><persName><forename>J.</forename> <surname>Jenstad</surname></persName></editor> (Ed.), <title level="m">The Map of Early Modern London</title>. Retrieved <date when="2017-11-20">November 20, 2017</date>, from <ref target="http://mapoflondon.uvic.ca/PERS_spreadsheet.htm">http://mapoflondon.uvic.ca/PERS_spreadsheet.htm</ref> </bibl>