This record contains information about a single individual, including names, occupation, nationality, birth, death, residence, etc.

It can be expanded with much more information, following TEI guidelines for person

The elements of a person's record constitute in their entirety a brief biographical sketch of the record's subject. It is therefore not necessary to limit the description of the person's life to a single element. Instead, all information should be encoded at the appropriate place in the record, for example <birth>, <death> or <floruit>.

            <person sex="1">
               <persName xml:lang="gez" xml:id="n1">አበከራዙን</persName>
               <persName xml:lang="gez" type="normalized" corresp="#n1">ʾAbakarazun</persName>
               <persName type="alt"><roleName type="title">ʾabbā</roleName> ʾAbakǝrazun</persName>
               <nationality>Christian Ethiopia</nationality>

               <occupation type="ecclesiastic">monk</occupation>
               <floruit notBefore="1390" notAfter="1471">1390-1471</floruit>
                  <placeName ref="LOC2331DabraQ">Dabra Qaʿat</placeName>

               <relation name="bm:fatherOf" active="PRS1009Abakaraz" passive="PRS1000Abakaraz PRS1020Abakaraz"></relation>
               <relation name="bm:husbandOf" active="PRS1009Abakaraz" passive="PRS1030Abakaraz">
                    <desc>It is always a nice idea to provide a description of this relations with a sentence or two.



Example 1

We usually assign n1 to the standard name in Fidal, and point with @corresp to that for transliteration and translations of the same.

Other <persName>s will have other IDs, which can be anything which is a valid @xml:id but better if the are in the format 'n\d+'.

If you want to add a typical spelling which is used to search a name, like in, the safest place to add it so that it is indexed without affecting the actual content of the entry is in a new teiHeader//titleStmt/title

You can also use @type with value main to further specify what the label name of the person should be.

  <persName xml:id="n1" xml:lang="gez">ማርያም፡</persName>
  <persName xml:lang="gez" corresp="#n1" type="normalized">Māryām</persName>
  <persName xml:lang="en" corresp="#n1" type="main">Mary</persName>


Example 2

This is of course redundant when the <persName> you assign this attribute would be already the one picked by the titles rules, which are in order of priority:

  1. <persName[@type = 'main']>
  2. <persName[@corresp = '#n1'][@xml:lang = 'gez']>
  3. <persName[@corresp = '#n1'][@xml:lang = 'en'][@type = 'normalized']>
  4. <persName[@corresp = '#n1'][@xml:lang[not(. = 'en')][not(. = 'gez')]]>
  5. <persName[1]>

Changing the IDs to arrive at a certain visualization is deceptory as in the following example, where

  <person sex="1" sameAs="Q671055">
  <persName xml:lang="en" xml:id="n1" type="main">Cyprian of Antioch</persName>
  <persName xml:lang="gez" xml:id="n2">ቆጵርያኖስ፡</persName>
  <persName xml:lang="gez" corresp="#n2" type="normalized">Qoṗrǝyānos</persName>

Example 3

The correct way to do this is

  <person sex="1" sameAs="Q671055">
  <persName xml:lang="gez" xml:id="n1">ቆጵርያኖስ፡</persName>
  <persName xml:lang="gez" corresp="#n1" type="normalized">Qoṗrǝyānos</persName>
  <persName xml:lang="en" xml:id="n2" type="main">Cyprian of Antioch</persName>

Example 4

which will print in the application 'Cyprian of Antioch' instead of the usual first candidate 'Qoṗrǝyānos', the normalized transcription of the name in Fidal.

Sometimes it is difficult to distinguish between the birth name and given name. The name given at the time of birth, is encoded as the a <persName> with an attribute @type with value birth. However, there are exceptions where a person has been forced to change his or her birth name to another name for various reasons. In this case a new name should be given to a person with @type=given. In our person records there are persons who have both a birth name and a given name. Here a typical example is a woman named Aster Gānnoo, who was an Oromo pioneer who worked with Onesimos Nasib on the translation of the Bible into Oromo. Her Oromo name, which she had got from her parents, was called ሰልባን፡ but later she changed her name to አስቴር፡. In this case, we mark ሰልባን፡ as birth name where as አስቴር፡ as a given name. .

            <persName xml:lang="gez" xml:id="n1" type="given">አስቴር፡ ጋኖ፡</persName>
            <persName xml:lang="gez" corresp="#n1" type="normalized">ʾAster Gānnoo</persName>
            <persName xml:lang="gez" xml:id="n2" type="given">አስቴር፡ ገኖ፡</persName>
            <persName xml:lang="gez" corresp="#n2" type="normalized">ʾAster Gano</persName>
            <persName xml:lang="gez" xml:id="n3" type="birth">ሰልባን፡ ጋኖ፡</persName>
            <persName xml:lang="gez" corresp="#n3" type="normalized">Salbāān Gānnoo</persName>

Example 5

Surname and Forename

Use <surname> and <forename> only for European names. For other names you can use <addName> <genName> (e.g. for the ordinal in the name of a king) or simply <name>. To <persName> you can give a @type

For international saints and biblical figures, the English name should be used. "Saint" as a title should be spelled with a capital and can be abbreviated St (without dot)


If the name contains a role, please tag it as <roleName> and add a @type.

    <persName xml:lang="gez" xml:id="n1" type="birth">ሚናስ፡</persName>
    <persName xml:lang="gez" corresp="#n1" type="normalized">Minās</persName>
    <persName><roleName type="title">ʾaṣe</roleName></persName>

Example 6

Also the encoding in the first example above is correct, althoug this second method has been preferred.

Please note that <roleName> always has to be encoded within <persName> for indexing and consistency purposes.


For Saints you might wish to record the commemoration dates. Please follow the following example. It is always preferable to include the source for the date (Sǝnkǝssār, Dǝggwā, EAe...).

<note type="commemoration"><date type="diesNatalis">5 Maskaram</date></note>

Example 7


Epithets should be recorded as <addName type='epithet'> and should have their @xml:id with a chosen value. Assuming the @xml:id is in this case "SaviourOfTheWorld" ID to be copied there will be the like 'PRS5684JesusCh#SaviourOfTheWorld'

<persName xml:lang="gez" xml:id="n1">ኢየሱስ፡ ክርስቶስ፡</persName>
<persName xml:lang="gez" type="normalized" corresp="#n1">ʾIyasus Krǝstos</persName>
<persName xml:lang="gez" type="alt" xml:id="n2">ክርስቶስ፡</persName>
<persName xml:lang="gez" corresp="#n2">Krǝstos</persName>
<persName xml:lang="gez" xml:id="MadhaneAlam"><addName type="epithet">መድኃኔ፡ ዓለም</addName> </persName>
<persName xml:lang="gez" corresp="#MadhaneAlam">Madḫāne ʿĀlam</persName>

Example 8

Unknown or incomplete names

If the name of a person is only partly attested in a manuscript, the <persName> in the person record should only contain the attested part of the name or be normalized. It should not be marked up in any way. Mark up should instead be carried out in the text of the manuscript which contains this name. Note that it is not necessary to create a record if there is not enough information available on the person to ensure the record's correctness.

Information about this person

<floruit> contains the date of the major active years of the record's subject. The paragraphical information given in <floruit> does not aim at describing the whole life of the person in question, but focusses on what they have done in their active years. For instance, for metropolitans, kings etc. it would usually encompass the years between their appointment and death or replacement. See for example ʾAbbāy Habta Ṣǝyon:

               <birth when="1869"></birth>
            <floruit notBefore="1889" notAfter="1914">He was among the last notables of 
               <placeName ref="LOC3764Hamase"></placeName>
               to hold the office of <persName ref="PRS1083AbbayHa"><roleName type="title">baḥǝra nagāš</roleName></persName>. 
               He was officially promoted by the Italians, he inherited the office from his uncle 
               <persName ref="PRS4907Gwerade"></persName>. The decline of this office lead to the loss of effective executive power, but ʾAbbāy  became the spokesperson and the head 
               of the indigenous population of  <placeName ref="LOC1579Asmara"></placeName>, concentrated in its old quarters. 
               It seems that thanks to his services the relationships with the 
               Italian colonial administration, tense from time to time, stayed harmonious on the whole.</floruit>
            <death when="1914">He died at <placeName ref="LOC1579Asmara"></placeName> in <date>1914</date>. </death>

Example 9

<occupation> can take @type attribute.

You can also use multiple <occupation> elements and add @from and @to to assign the occupation to a period. Also only one of the two is OK. The use of <occupation type="academic"> should be restricted to scholars involved in the study of Ethiopian manuscripts. All persons whose records contain <occupation type="academic"> are displayed on the homepage. Try to limit the use of <occupation> to actual occupations. If you are unsure about whether some information on a person should be added in <occupation>, open a new issue. "Angel", for instance, is not an occupation, but can be added to the record as a keyword:

<term key="angel"></term>

Example 10

In similar way, <occupation type="ruler"> refers specifically an occupation of a king or a queen or in the contemporary system of political administration can it be a president (head of the state) or prime minister (in the parliamentary form of government). Therefore, in this case <occupation type="ruler"> uses for all Ethiopian kings, while <occupation type="political"> refers largely a person whose occupation belongs to the category of political but he/she can be a ruler (governor of a province), courtier and other political posts. It also entails the various occupations of medieval civil offices of the Christian kingdom of Ethiopia.

Also for <faith> you will find a list of values for @type .


Use @sameAs inside <person> to declare the authority file. Prefer Wikidata if an item is present, otherways use VIAF.

<person sex="1" sameAs="Q302">
<persName xml:lang="gez" xml:id="n1">ኢየሱስ፡ ክርስቶስ፡</persName>

Example 11


If you want to give extremes of the date also in @when @notBefore @notAfter please follow TEI guidelines for date. When the date is given as a value and no further information is provided, it is not necessary to repeat the dating in the content of the element: <death when="1636" evidence="internal"> is sufficient. However, if the element contains text, the value will not be visualized. The date should therefore be included explicitly in the content as in this example from Yamāna Krǝstos:

              <floruit when="1605" evidence="internal">
              He was an important military and political figure, who was involved in several episodes related to
              <persName ref="PRS9038Susenyos"></persName>
              during the latter&apos;s years as šǝftā and pretender to the throne. He refused to side with his brother
              <persName ref="PRS9038Susenyos">
              <roleName type="title">ʾaṣe</roleName>
              in a struggle against the young
              <persName ref="PRS10198Yaeqob">
              <roleName type="title">ʾaṣe</roleName>

Example 12


Each relationship should be listed separately in a <relation>, even if the same relationship exists between this and more than one other entity. @name contains the name of the relation. Allowed values are those in the SNAP Ontology. you can filter them out in oXygen typing snap: in the value list.

@active should contain the @xml:id of the current person. @passive should contain the IDs of the related persons, separated by a space

As usual all elements can take a @xml:lang.

The relationship between a work and its subject is expressed in the person record:

<relation name="ecrm:P129i_is_subject_of" active="PRS4585Georgeo" passive="LIT1455GadlaG"></relation>

Example 13


For distinct groups of people as an abstract notion (so a "specific group of monks", but not "friary" or "family") we use a record in TEI which is the same as that for a person, but contains a <personGrp> in the listPerson, with the persNames of the group. Relations should then be used to provide evidence for members of this group, which can be fixed or flexible. The members of the group can be indicated in the group record by using snap:Group, however, it is sufficient to include the relation saws:isMemberOf in each individual person record of members of the group.

               <persName xml:lang="gez" xml:id="n1">ደቂቀ፡ ኤዎስጣቴዎስ፡</persName>
               <persName xml:lang="gez" type="normalized" corresp="#n1">daqiqa ʾEwosṭātewos</persName>
               <persName xml:lang="en">ʾEwosṭāteans</persName>
               <floruit notBefore="1300" precision="medium">The ʾEwostāteans are a religious movement and network of monasteries going back to <persName ref="PRS3932Ewostate"></persName>. They originated
                  in Eastern <placeName ref="LOC6569Tegray"></placeName> and were widely involved in the Christianization of the Northern Ethiopian provinces in the <date>14th and 15th century</date>.

Example 14

 <relation name="saws:isMemberOf" active="PRS11228Yaeqob" passive="PRS11207Ewostateans"></relation>

Example 15

Members of the group should have a relation saws:isMemberOf linking to the group record. This is valid for example for monks belonging to the orders of Takla Hāymānot, Sāmuʾel of Waldəbbā or ʾEwosṭātewos. In a similar way, various bodies of military regiments are also be represented as

 <persName xml:lang="gez" xml:id="n1">ቊርባን፡</persName>

Example 16


                <occupation type="military">guarding the king</occupation>
               <floruit notBefore="1563" notAfter="1607">They were a distinct household troops of King
              <persName ref="Śarḍa Dǝngǝl">Śarḍa Dǝngǝl</persName>.</floruit>
                <relation name="lawd:hasAttestation" active="PRS11801Qurban" passive="LIT3951ChronSusenyos"></relation>

Example 17

This page is referred to in the following pages

Revisions of this page

  • Pietro Maria Liuzzo on 2018-04-30: first version of guidelines from Wiki
  • Dorothea Reule on 2018-05-23: Added title priorities
  • Dorothea Reule on 2018-07-06: Added use of floruit