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WordSmith Tools Manual

Navigation: Tags and Markup

Making a Tag File

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Tags for your text

Each tag you define has to match the structure of your text. If it doesn't match you won't get the results you want.


tog_plus        detailed explanation


Tag Syntax

Each tag is case sensitive.

Tags conventionally begin with < and end with > but the first & last characters of the tag can be any symbol.

The ideal format for use with WordSmith, for single-word mark-up, is <TAG>word. In other words your tag immediately precedes the word it refers to. Tag as prefix to word. For longer stretches, <OPENING_TAG>blah blah blah</OPENING_TAG>. In other words a tag is used to signal the start of mark-up, and / plus the same tag is used to signal the end.


You can use

 * to mean any sequence of characters;

 ? to mean any one character;

 # to mean any numerical digit.


Don't use [ to insert comments in a tag file, since [ is useful as a potential tag symbol. You can use # to represent a number (e.g. <h#> will pick up <h5>, <h1>, etc.). And use ? to represent any single character (<?> will pick up <s>, <p>, etc.), or * to represent any number of characters (e.g. <u*> will pick up <u who=Fred>, <u who=Mariana>, etc.). Otherwise, prepare your tag list file in the same way as for Stop Lists.


Use notepad or any other plain text editor, to create a new .tag file. Write one entry on each line.

Any number of pre-defined tags can be stored. But the more you use, the more work WordSmith has to do, of course and it will take time & memory ...


Mark-up to INclude

A tag file for tags to retain contains a simple list of all the tags you want to retain. Sample tag list files for BNC handling (e.g bnc world.tag) are included with your installation (in your Documents\wsmith7 folder): you could make a new tag file by reading one of them in, altering it, and saving it under a new name.



Here a tag file has been loaded; it had 7 entries, 6 of which relate to lexical verbs.


and here is a word list based on BNC spoken classroom data where the tag file was used:





tog_plus        Mark-up to EXclude



tog_plus        Colours


tog_plus        Sound and Video


tog_plus        Descriptive Label


tog_plus        Section Tag


tog_plus        Tagstring_only tags



Here is an example of what you see after selecting a tag file and pressing "Load". The first tag is a "play media" tag, as is shown by the icon. You can see the cream on purple colour for nouns too. The tag file (BNC World.tag) is included in your installation.




tog_plus        Entity File (entities to be translated)


See also: Overview of Tags, Handling Tags, Showing Nearest Tags in Concord, Tag Concordancing, Types of Tag, Viewing the Tags, Using Tags as Text Selectors, Guide to handling the BNC.