Handling primary sources in TEI XML
18. Why are manuscript descriptions special?
- Manuscripts are unique objects, sometimes (though not always) of great cultural or political value
- Books, by contrast, exist in multiple copies, and can be described adequately by well-established and formalized bibliographic conventions.
- For manuscripts, there are several traditions, often descriptive or belle lettriste, and little consensus.
Similar concerns apply to other text-bearing objects.