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Home :: Archive :: 1991 :: September ::
Shakespeare Online at Dartmouth
Shakespeare Electronic Conference, Vol. 2, No. 212. Thursday, 12 Sep 1991.
 
From: 		Ken Steele <
 This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it
 >
Subject: 	Shakespeare Online at Dartmouth
Date: 		Thu, 12 Sep 91 20:12:15 EDT
 
Having had some time to experiment with the Dartmouth Shakespeare
files, I thought others might appreciate some further information.
Unfortunately, my initial excitement is already beginning to fade...
 
The SHAKESPEARE PLAYS textbase consists of only 20 of Shakespeare's
38 plays, presumably following an undergraduate curriculum, omitting
six comedies (2GV, LLL, MWW, TC, AWEW, MM), five histories (1,2 & 3H6,
KJ, H8), three tragedies (Titus, Cor., and Timon), and four romances
(Per., Cym., WT, and 2NK).  The poems are in a separate database.
 
I am not familiar with Arthur Bullen's "Stratford Town Edition," but
it doesn't exactly sound like a scholarly text.  Evidently the site
license from Shakespeare on Disk (NY) was less expensive than a
similar arrangement with WordCruncher, for the Riverside Shakespeare,
or with Oxford, for the Wells/Taylor edition.  I would have been
elated had Dartmouth found a way to mount the original Quarto and
Folio texts, but perhaps that project is left for us to orchestrate
here on SHAKSPER.  (Perhaps more on that later).  (As Michael S. Hart
has pointed out to me in a private note, the Shakespeare on Disk texts
are copyright and doubtless certain restrictions apply to their use).
 
The following extract from the on-line documentation gives a fairly
good overview of the textbase's capabilities.  As a simple concordance
or quote-checker, the system seems quite adequate, but it is
considerably less sophisticated and less user-friendly than either
TACT or WordCruncher (the two text retrieval packages with which I am
most familiar).  For undergraduate students, or those new to literary
computing, however, this might be a useful tool.
 
I'd like to hear others' opinions too.
 
					Ken Steele
					University of Toronto
 
 
--------------------------------------------------------------------------
 
 
   User's Guide to the Dartmouth Experimental Shakespeare Plays File
   -----------------------------------------------------------------
 
   		              (May 1990)
 
 
To use the Dartmouth Shakespeare Plays File:
--------------------------------------------
 
Connect (TELNET) to lib.dartmouth.edu (the Dartmouth College Library
Online Catalog).  After the catalog is running, type
 
	SELECT FILE SHAKESPEARE PLAYS
 
To search the Shakespeare file, you should be familiar with the Online
Catalog commands.  Ask at any of the Dartmouth College Libraries for a User
Guide to the Online Catalog.
 
Please use the Online Catalog's SUGGEST command to offer comments and
suggestions regarding the file and this manual, or talk to a librarian about
it.
 
 
1.      What is the Shakespeare Plays File?
--      -----------------------------------
 
The Shakespeare Plays file is an experimental file in the Dartmouth
College Library Online Catalog which consists of the full text of 20 of
Shakespeare's plays, taken from Arthur Bullen's Stratford Town Edition.
They were purchased from Shakespeare on Disk, a company in New York State.
The twenty plays included are:
 
Antony and Cleopatra			Hamlet
Julius Caesar				King Lear
Macbeth					Othello
Romeo and Juliet			As You Like It
A Comedy of Errors			The Merchant of Venice
A Midsummer Night's Dream		Much Ado About Nothing
The Taming of the Shrew			The Tempest
Twelfth Night				King Richard II
King Henry IV (Part I)			King Henry IV (Part II)
King Henry V				King Richard III
 
 
2.      How is the file structured?
--	---------------------------
 
The full text of all the plays is divided into records in the online
catalog database.  When you search the database, what you retrieve is
one or more records, which you then display.  Each play consists of the
following records:
	
	- Dramatis Personae (a list of all the characters in the play)
	- Synopsis (a summary of what takes place in the play)
	- One record for each scene in the play.
 
Each record consists of several fields.  You can search for information
in any field.  All fields are indexed.  When you display items from this
file, you are looking at some or all of the fields in the records that you
retrieved.  The following fields can be found in each record type:
 
	A Dramatis Personae record consists of:
		Play:   the name of the play
		Sect:   the section of the play (always "Dramatis Personae")
		Char:   a character's name and description
 
	A Synopsis record consists of:
		Play:   the name of the play
 
	Sect:   the section of the play (always "Synopsis")
		Scen:   the act/scene being described
		Setg:   the setting for the action
		Sum:    summary of the action (the sequence of Act/Scene,
			Setting, and Action will repeat throughout the
			Synopsis)
 
	A Scene record consists of:
		Play:   the name of the play
		Act:    the number of the act (in Roman numerals)
		Scen:   the number of the scene (in Roman numerals)
		Setg:   the Setting for the action
		Dir:    stage directions
		Text:   a character's name, followed by his utterance.
 
At the far right of a Text line appears a line number, indicating the
line number of this line within the play.  (Text fields will repeat, with
Setting and Direction fields inserted when they occur in the play).
 
 
3.      What display formats are available in the Shakespeare file?
--	-----------------------------------------------------------
 
After you have completed a search, you will automatically see a SHORT
display of the sections (DP, Synopsis, or Scenes) that you retrieved.
 
You may then type:
 
	DISPLAY LONG (or DISPLAY MEDIUM) to see the entire section.
	DISPLAY CONTEXT to see the fields that contain one or more words
		you searched for.
	DISPLAY [field names] to see specific fields.
 
	
4.      How can you search the Shakespeare file?
--	----------------------------------------
 
The construction of commands in the Shakespeare file is identical to
that found in the other files in the online catalog.  You must always
specify what index you want to search.  The following indexes are
available for searching:
 
	GENERAL (searches all parts of all plays)
	PLAY
	SECTION
	CHARACTER
	SETTING
	ACT
	SCENE
	DIRECTION
	TEXT
 
 
5.      Examples of searches.
--	---------------------
 
Following are some examples of different kinds of searches that can be
done using the Shakespeare file.
 
To find the text of an entire play:
 
	FIND PLAY SHREW
 
To find the synopsis of a play:
 
	FIND PLAY TWELFTH NIGHT AND SECT SYNOPSIS
   or 	FIND GEN TWELFTH NIGHT SYNOPSIS
 
To find the Dramatis Personae of a Play:
 
	FIND PLAY MACBETH AND SECT DRAMATIS PERSONAE
   or 	FIND GEN MACBETH DRAMATIS PERSONAE
 
To find the description of a particular person in a play:
 
	FIND PLAY TAMING AND CHAR BAPTISTA
 
To find what plays a certain character appears in:
 
	FIND CHAR FALSTAFF
 
To find a specific act of a play:
 
	FIND PLAY MERCHANT AND ACT II
      		(this will retrieve several records,
		one for each scene in Act II).
 
To find a specific scene of a play:
 
	PLAY JULIUS CAESAR AND ACT IV AND SCENE III
 
To find all the occurrences of a particular word spoken in a play:
 
	TEXT THANKS
 
 
The initial SHORT display will report all the acts and scenes of all
the plays that include this word.  Type DISPLAY CONTEXT to see the actual
lines of text containing the word.
 
To find all the occurrences of a particular combination of words
spoken in any of the plays:
 
	TEXT GHOST OR GHOSTS FIND TEXT KINGDOM HORSE
 
To find all the occurrences of a particular combination of words spoken
in any of the plays:
 
	TEXT GHOST OR GHOSTS FIND TEXT KINGDOM HORSE
 
The initial display will report all the acts and scenes of all the plays
that include the words.  Type DISPLAY CONTEXT to see the actual lines
of text containing any of the words.
 
To find all the occurrences of a particular combination of words
anywhere in a particular play:
 
	MACBETH AND GEN GHOST OR GHOSTS
 
or combination of words uttered by a particular person in a particular play:
 
	FIND PLAY SHREW AND TEXT KATHARINA AND FOOD
 
The initial display will report all the acts and scenes of all the plays
that include the words.  Type DISPLAY CONTEXT to see the actual lines
of text containing any of the words.  (Note that the character's name is
indexed as part of the text).
 
To locate a particular quote:
 
To find Julius Caesar's death scene, you would need to experiment:
 
	F GEN CAESAR DEATH
 
finds more than you want, but by displaying selected records you might
find the scene.
 
	F GEN CAESAR DIES
 
gives a more reasonable result.  DISPLAY CONTEXT will zero in
on the scene you want.
 
Of course,
 
	FIND GEN ET ADJ TU
 
is still more precise, although the results are a little surprising!
 
To find all scenes that take place in a castle:
 
	F SETTING CASTLE
 
 
	
---------------------------------------------------------------------
[This file has been compiled from on-line help available through the
Dartmouth College Library Online Catalogue, September 1991, for
distribution to members of the SHAKSPER Global Electronic Conference.
Editor, Ken Steele <
 This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it
 > <SHAKSPER@utoronto.bitnet>
It is available as INTERNET TEXTBASE SHAKSPER on the SHAKSPER Fileserver.
	
 

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