Divisions of the text: general [230]

Abstract

General notes on the function and use of <div>, including its basic internal structure

Discussion

The TEI <div> element embraces two related functions: to encode subdivisions of a text (however a text is defined), and to indicate classification of those subdivisions using the type= attribute.The internal structure of the TEI <div> element is fairly simple. A <div> may start with one or more elements from the “divtop” class (which includes elements like <opener>, <head>, and other elements that typically fall at the beginning of textual divisions). Following these elements, a <div> may consist either of a series of paragraphs and other chunk-level elements, or a series of <div> elements. At the end of the <div>, you may have one or more elements from the “divbot” class (which includes elements like <closer>, <trailer>, and other elements that typically fall at the end of textual divisions).

There is one complication to the structure of <div> that is worth knowing about. We said above that “a <div> may consist either of a series of paragraphs and other chunk-level elements, or a series of <div> elements”. In addition, a <div> may consist of a series of paragraphs followed by one or more <div> elements. This is a familiar structure, for instance in the case of a report whose sections begin with a few introductory paragraphs followed by several subsections. However, once you have had one <div> element, you cannot go back to having paragraphs. In other words, <div>s may follow paragraphs, but they may not be interspersed with paragraphs.

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