Menota Handbook 3.0
Guidelines for the electronic encoding of
Medieval Nordic primary sources

Appendix D: Schemas

Version 3.0 (12 December 2019)
Entity list in D.1.1 last updated 14 December 2022

by Tone Merete Bruvik, Odd Einar Haugen and Øyvind Liland Gjesdal

D.1 Menota schemas

In version 1 of the Menota handbook, a number of changes were made to the TEI Guidelines version P4. For details on this procedure, see the page Document Type Definition in v. 1.1 of the handbook. Those who wish to encode texts according to TEI P4 should refer to this version of the handbook. We recommend using TEI P5.

In version 2 of the Menota handbook, a number of additions and changes were made with reference to the TEI Guidelines version P5. In TEI P5, additions and changes are specified in XML in a schema called ODD (One Document Does it all). For the Menota handbook, a Menota ODD file was made specifying all changes, and with the help of the ROMA tool offered by TEI, new schemas were generated. ROMA allows users to choose between several outputs: a DTD, a RELAX NG schema (which, in spite of its name, can be a stricter schema than a DTD), or a W3C schema. The resulting schemas can be consulted and accessed in app. D of v. 2 of the handbook.

In version 3 of the Menota handbook, a few changes have been made to the RELAX NG schema of the previous version, using the procedures explained above. These changes are the following: (1) replacing the <me:punct> element with the standard TEI <pc> element (allowing it to contain the <choice> element, as well as the <me:facs>, <me:dipl> and <me:norm> elements; (2) replacing the <me:expunged> element with the <me:suppressed> element; (3) adding the @me:key and @me:ref attributes to a number of elements, as introduced in the new ch. 16.

D.1.1 Current versions of Menota schemas

This is a list of the current Menota schemas. Earlier versions of these files can be accessed in app. D of v. 2 of the handbook.

Remember that many browsers will try to open XML files in a new window; in order to download these files, try using right-click (Windows) or alt-click (Mac).

(1) One Document Does it all (ODD)

The ODD file is an XML file which specifies all changes to the TEI Guidelines P5.

(2) Entity list

The entity list specifies recommended entities. This is not an obligatory part of a schema, but it is an important part of Menota encoding since a large number of characters have to be encoded by entities. It is essential that characters in the Private Use Area of the Unicode Standard are encoded with entities. The entity list is an ordinary text file.

The entity list can be updated independently of the schemas.

(3) Document Type Definition (DTD)

The DTD is one of several schemas that are allowed in TEI P5. It is used for this handbook, for example, while the texts in the archive refer to a RELAX NG schema. Note that the DTD does not allow the specific Menota elements such as <me:facs>, <me:dipl>, <me:norm> or the specific Menota attributes such as @me:msa, etc. These are only allowed in the RELAX NG schema offered below. While the RELAX NG schema has been updated for v. 3.0 of the handbook, no update was necessary for the DTD. This is the same as for v. 2.0 of the handbook.

Some browsers will attach the extension .xml to this file when downloaded. Just change the extension back to .dtd

(4) RELAX NG schema

The version given here has been generated on the basis of the ODD file and entity file listed above. When using a RELAX NG schema, data values can be validated to a higher extent than what is possible with a DTD. This applies both to attribute and content values. For example, the attributes @notBefore and @notAfter in the element <origDate> have to contain a valid date value if the RELAX NG schema is used. The RELAX NG schema also supports name spaces, which is useful if one wants to mix schemas as we do in Menota. Among additional Menota elements are <me:facs>, <me:dipl>, <me:norm> and <me:suppressed>, and among additional attributes @me:msa.

D.2 Referring to the Menota schema

Please note that the links below have been updated after Menota was moved from Oslo to Bergen in the beginning of 2016.

As of TEI P5, a Menotic XML file should refer to two external files, one schema and one list of entities. The beginning of the file using the Menota P5 DTD schema should look like this:

<?xml version="1.0" encoding="UTF-8"?>
<!ENTITY % Menota_entities SYSTEM
''   >
<TEI xmlns="">

Remember that if you would like to use specific Menota elements or attributes (beginning with 'me:') you need to refer to a RELAX NG schema. We now recommend that all files in the archive should follow this schema.

The beginning of the file using the Menota P5 RELAX NG schema might look like this if your are using Oxygen:

<?xml version="1.0" encoding="UTF-8"?>
<?oxygen RNGSchema="" type="xml" ?>
<!ENTITY % Menota_entities SYSTEM
''   >

<TEI xmlns="" xmlns:me="">

If you are using another editor, the reference to the schema will be different. This is one way of doing it:

<?xml version="1.0" encoding="UTF-8"?>
<?xml-model href=""?>
<!ENTITY % Menota_entities SYSTEM ''>
<?xml-stylesheet type="text/xsl" href="..."?>

<TEI xmlns="" xmlns:me="">

Please note the namespace references in the TEI root element when the RELAX NG schema is used. The default namespace is the TEI namespace, while the additional Menota namespace is listed next as the "xmlns:me" (where “me” is an abbreviation for “Menota”). When the DTD schema is used, the Menota namespace can not the declared. When using the RELAX NG schema, all elements and attributes belonging to the Menota namespace have to use the prefix “me:” in order to be valid, e.g.:

<interpretation me:lemmatized="completely" me:morphAnalyzed="completely">
  <p>The complete text has been lemmatised and morphologically analysed 
  according to the rules specified in ch. 11 of the Menota Handbook, v. 3.0.</p>
</interpretation >

See app. E for downloadable samples of valid Menotic XML headers.