Braille Formats
Principles of Print to Braille Transcription
1997


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  • Rule 19

    Glossaries, Handbooks, Vocabularies
    Dictionaries, Thesauruses
    Excerpts or Facsimiles of These Materials

    1. General format. This Code section contains general provisions that must be followed in transcribing glossaries, handbooks, vocabularies, dictionaries, and thesauruses. If these materials are shown printed in multiple columns, disregard this format and present the material alphabetically in a single column on the braille page.

      1. Alphabetical divisions

          (1) When the print text shows alphabetical divisions set off by initial letters, each of these letters must be preceded by the letter indicator and centered on the braille line. Follow the print copy as to capitalization. Do not leave a blank line before or after the initial letters.

          (2) If the print text uses only blank lines to separate alphabetical divisions, leave a blank line preceding the first entry and also between the alphabetical divisions.

          (3) At the bottom of a braille page, unless there is space for an initial letter followed by at least a portion of an entry the initial letter must be placed on a new page.

      2. Capitalization. Follow the print copy for capitalization. All words and abbreviations that are printed in small capital letters must be preceded by the double capital indicator, not the italic indicator.

      3. Special typefaces

          (1) <b>Special typeface ignored. Frequently, special typefaces are used in print to identify certain categories of items, e.g., regular boldface is used for all entry words, small boldface for all inflected forms, boldface italics for all part of speech labels, italics for all abbreviations. Special typefaces that are used in this manner must be ignored in braille. EXCEPTION: Italics must be retained for part of speech labels that are not abbreviated and not followed by punctuation to separate them from the material that follows.

        1. Special typeface retained.

            (a) Use braille italics to represent special typeface(s) that are used to identify foreign terms shown as entries and to emphasize specific words, abbreviations, or phrases within an entry. See Rule 1, Section 6 for foreign material in English context.

            (b) For distinction, words and abbreviations printed in small capital letters must be preceded by the double capital indicator.

      4. Abbreviations

          (1) Ignore print italics and boldface used for abbreviations except when the abbreviation is part of a phrase that required italics for distinction. Represent small capitals by the double capital indicator.

          (2) Even though it may not be shown in print, a period must be inserted after an abbreviation except when the abbreviation is a main entry word that is shown without a period.

          (3) Dictionary abbreviations. The list of abbreviations used in a dictionary, often at the front of the print book, must be transcribed according to Rule 7, Section 2a. This material may be presented in a separate braille volume in accordance with Rule 1, Section 10.

      5. Pagination

          (1)

          Print page numbers

            (a) Glossary, handbook, vocabulary, thesaurus, or dictionary section. Print page numbers must be indicated in transcriptions of these materials usually shown at the back of textbooks.
            NOTE: If pages in these sections are unnumbered in the print text, use only running braille page numbers and do not assign print page numbers to them.

            (b) Full-length dictionary or thesaurus. Print page numbers should ordinarily be omitted in transcriptions of full-length dictionaries and thesauruses unless their inclusions is required by the sponsoring agency.

          (2) Braille page numbers. The running braille page numbers should be consecutive to those of preceding volumes. However, when material from the back of the text is treated as a supplementary volume, see Rule 1, Section 10.

      6. Inclusive guide words

          (1) Print page guide words. Guide words shown on print pages should ordinarily be omitted. However, when an agency requires their inclusion in the braille edition, these guide words must be connected by a dash and placed as follows.

            (a) Guide words should be centered on the available cells of the first line of each new print page. At least three blank cells must be left before the first word and after the last word.

            (b) When print page guide words begin a new braille page, at least three blank cells must be left between the last guide word and the print page number. If a running head is used, center the guide words on the second braille line.

            (c) No blank line must be left between the print page guide words and the text that follows.

          (2) Braille page guide words. These guide words are required whether or not print guide words appear in the text. Braille page guide words must be connected by a dash and centered, using the available cells fo the last line of each braille page.

            (a) These guide words consist of the first and the last main entry words that are shown on the braille page.

            (b) When a braille page contains no main entry word but only subentries, use the entry word to which the subentries pertain as the guide word on that page. The entry word must be followed by (cont.) and centered on the last braille line.

            (c) No blank line is required between the last line of text and the braille page guide words.

            (d) At least three blank cells must be left before the first guide word and between the last guide word and the braille page number.

            (e) If guide words are too long to be contained on one braille line, follow the appropriate format given below.

              [1] In a glossary or handbook, words in long entries should be abbreviated.

              [2] In a vocabulary, thesaurus, or dictionary, inclusive alphabetical sequences of letters that identify the first and last main entry words must be written in uncontracted braille, connected by a hyphen, and centered on the available cells of the last braille line.

            (f) Whenever the symbol dots 36 in a braille page guide word is in contact with the braille dash, for clarity, the compound hyphen (25, 25) must be substituted for the dash.

    2. Placement of pronunciation tables. See also Rule 18, Section 1c.

      1. In a glossary, handbook, vocabulary, or dictionary section

          (1) A full table of pronunciation, usually shown preceding a glossary, handbook, vocabulary, or dictionary section, must be transcribed in the format provided in Rule 18, Section 1d and placed as shown in the print text except as noted in (3) below.

          (2) Summary tables of pronunciation, usually shown at the bottom of the pages in a dictionary section, must be omitted in the braille edition. However, when only summary tables are shown, this material must be transcribed in the format provided in Rule 18, Section 1d and inserted before beginning the transcription of the glossary, vocabulary, or dictionary section except as noted in (3) below.

          (3) In a braille volume containing both regular text in which pronunciation symbols are used as well as a glossary, handbook, vocabulary, or dictionary section preceded by a pronunciation table, move the table shown preceding the glossary or other text section to a preliminary page placed as directed in Rule 2, Section 1b. Omit the print page number(s), but give the preliminary page number of the table on the Transcriber's Notes page(s) and in a transcriber's note inserted before the glossary, handbook, vocabulary, or dictionary section.

      2. In a full-length dictionary
          (1) The full table of pronunciation of pronunciation key must be transcribed according to the format provided in Rule 18, Section 1d. Abbreviated or summary tables of pronunciation, usually printed at the bottom of the dictionary pages, must be omitted in the braille edition.
          (2) When a dictionary includes an extensive pronunciation section, usually at the front of the print book, this material may be presented in a separate braille volume in accordance with Rule 1, Section 10.

            NOTE: The supplementary volume may also include the list of dictionary abbreviations as provided in Section 1d(3) above.

      3. In a dictionary excerpt or facsimile. See Sections 12b-12d below.

    3. Entry word placement, indention of runovers and subentries. The indention pattern provided below should be followed when transcribing English glossaries, handbooks, vocabularies, thesauruses, and dictionaries. In the exceptional case where it is necessary to preserve distinction between the runovers of entries and the runovers of subentries, follow the indention pattern provided for index entries in Rule 7, Section 4c.

      1. Blank lines. If the print text uses only blank lines to separate alphabetical divisions, leave a blank line before the first entry and also between the alphabetical divisions. No blank lines must be left between entries except as provided in Section 3b(2) below.

      2. Entry words and runovers
          (1) In a vocabulary or dictionary, each entry word must start in cell 1. If there are no subentries in the entire vocabulary or dictionary, runovers must start in cell 3. When there are main entries and subentries, start each main entry in cell 1, each subentry in cell 3, and all runovers in cell 5.

          (2) In a glossary or handbook where the entries contain examples of various print formats such as lines of poetry, sentence diagrams, and other illustrative or explanatory materials that are to be included in the braille edition, each entry word or entry heading should be treated as a cell-5 braille heading in accordance with Rule 4, Section 3. Items within these entries must be brailled using the full width of the braille line and the appropriate format(s) provided in this Code.

      3. Subentries

          (1) Regardless of their placement in print, the following items must be brailled as subentries starting in cell 3, with runovers in cell 5. For capitalization, special typefaces, and abbreviations, observe the directives given in Sections 1b, 1c, and 1d above.

            (a) The subentry items listed below are usually printed in the same typeface as main entry words and often show the same syllable divisions, stress signs, or pronunciations as do the entry words.

            Variant spellings, e.g., labor or labour, plow or plough
            Inflected forms, e.g., plurals of nouns, tenses of verbs, comparatives and superlatives of adjectives and adverbs
            Run-in derived entries, e.g., --dumb·ly adv. --dumb·ness n., --flat·ly adv. --flat·ness n. --flat·tish adj.

            (b) Each part of speech label must be placed as a subentry when an entry contains several part of speech labels, e.g., n, vb, adj, vt, vi, each of which is followed by its own definition.

            (c) Numbered or lettered definitions must be placed as subentries and transcribed as provided in Section 9 below.

            (d) Synonyms and antonyms must be placed as subentries and transcribed as provided in Section 9 below.

          (2) Unspaced dashes that are printed before subentry words must be omitted in braille.

          (3) Subentry words must be given the same first and second writings as required for entry words in Sections 4b and 4c below.

    4. Format for entry words
      1. When the print text uses a special typeface for all entry words in a glossary, handbook, vocabulary, thesaurus, or dictionary, this must be ignored in braille.

          (1) Distinctive typeface. Entry words that are specifically set off by means of a distinctive typeface must be italicized in braille.

          (2) Special print markers. Use the braille symbols given in Rule 5, Section 2e to represent the nonalphabetic signs used to identify specific entries, e.g., foreign terms, Americanisms, and regionalisms. Follow the print copy for the placement and spacing of these symbols which must be included in the special symbols list according to Rule 2, Section 5.

      2. First writing of entry words. Entry words must be written first in contracted braille without showing syllable divisions or stress signs even though these appear in the print entry words.

          (1) Foreign terms as entry words. Entries that are indicated in the print text as being foreign must be similarly indicated in the braille edition according to Section 4a(1) or (2) above. Such words or phrases must be written first in uncontracted braille, using the accent symbol (4) before each foreign accented letter.

          (2) Entry words without syllabication or pronunciations. In a thesaurus, handbook, glossary, or similar text where no syllabication or pronunciations are shown for any of the entry words and these words are not separated by punctuation from their definitions that are shown beginning with lowercase letters, use the following format. Ignore any special typeface and use contracted braille for the entry words, leaving two blank cells between an entry word and its following definition. See also the EXCEPTION given in Section 4c(1) below.

          (3) Entry words with small superior numbers. Homographs (i.e., two or more main entry words that are spelled alike but are different in meaning or origin) may be marked by small superior numbers preceding or following each entry word. Use the braille superscript symbols as directed below only with the contracted first writing of entry words and with numbered homographs that are shown in cross-references. If used in a text, these symbols must be included in the special symbols list in accordance with Rule 2, Section 5.

            (a) Regardless of their placement in print, in braille the numbers must follow the entry words with a blank cell preceding and following each number.

            (b) To represent a superscript number shown before an entry word, the unspaced symbol dot 4 must precede the number.

            (c) To represent a superscript number shown after an entry word, the unspaced symbol dots 45 must precede the number.

      3. Second writing of entry words

          (1) Entry words containing braille contractions. If the entry word contains a braille contraction it must rewritten in uncontracted braille. When an entry consists of several words, only some of which are contracted, the entire entry must be rewritten in uncontracted braille. EXCEPTION: In a thesaurus, handbook, glossary, or similar text where no syllabifications or pronunciations are shown for any entry words and/or where all the entries are proper names, words, terms, or phrases that are common to the text, do not rewrite entry words even though they contain braille contractions.

          (2) Entry words showing only syllable divisions. If the print entry word shows only syllable divisions, it must be rewritten in uncontracted braille indicating the syllable divisions as follows.

            (a) Use the regular hyphen (36) to represent the print hyphen, centered dot, vertical bar, or blank space that is shown between the syllables of an entry word.

            (b) Use the compound hyphen (25, 25) to represent the print hyphen or dash that is shown between the component words of a hyphenated compound entry word. If this hyphen should fall at the end of a braille line, do not substitute the regular hyphen for the compound hyphen. When used in a volume, the compound hyphen must be included in the special symbols list in accordance with Rule 2, Section 5.

          (3) Entry words showing syllable divisions and stress signs. If the print entry word shows both syllable divisions and stress signs, it must be rewritten in uncontracted braille showing the syllables and stress signs in accordance with Rule 18, Sections 2-4.

          (4) The second writing of foreign entries must be in accordance with the provisions given in (2) and (3) above, using the accent symbol (4) before each foreign accented letter.

    5. Prefixes, suffixes, single letters or letter combinations as entry words

      1. When shown as main entries standing alone in contact only with the hyphen, one-cell, part-word braille contractions may be used except for the en and in contractions. Braille contractions are underlined in the examples below.

        ar-, -ar, -ble, -ed, -er, -ing

      2. When shown as main entries standing alone in contact with the hyphen, lower-cell, part-word braille contractions must not be used.

        be-, com-, con-, dis-

      3. When shown as main entries, final-letter braille contractions must not be used when immediately preceded by the hyphen. However, one-cell, part-word contractions that are part of the final-letter contractions may be used. In the following examples, contractions are underlined.

        -ally, -ance, -ation, -ence, -ful, -ity, -less, -ment, -ness, -ong, -ound, -ount, -sion, -tion

      4. When single letters or letter combinations are shown as main entries, use of the letter indicator must be in accordance with Rule 1, Section 4b.

    6. Pronunciations of entry words and subentries. Begin pronunciations immediately after the complete transcription of entry or subentry words, i.e., after any required second writing. Pronunciations must be transcribed as follows.

      Unstressed diacritics according to Rule 18, Section 2
      Diacritics according to Rule 18, Section 3
      Phonetics according to Rule 18, Section 4

    7. Nonalphabetical signs. Braille symbols that must be used to represent the nonalphabetical signs shown in the entries of glossaries, vocabularies, or dictionaries are provided in Rule 5, Section 2. These symbols must be included in the special symbols list in accordance with Rule 2, Section 5.

      1. Angle brackets and arrowheads. Do not confuse these print signs. As a general rule arrowheads appear singly, while angle brackets are shown in pairs. Braille symbols for these print signs are given as follows: angle brackets, Rule 6, Section 2b(3); arrowheads, Rule 5, Section 2a(2). Follow print copy for the spacing of these signs.

      2. Boldface or symbolic colon. Some dictionaries use the symbolic colon, i.e., a boldface or regular colon often printed with a space preceding and following it, to introduce a definition or to separate two or more definitions. When shown in a text, this print sign must be represented by dots 46, 25, spaced as shown in print.

      3. Dashes and swung dashes. Many dictionaries use the dash and/or the swung dash (an enlarged tilde) to replace or stand for the main entry word at certain points in the entries. Use the braille symbols that are provided in Rule 5, Section 2e for lightface or boldface dashes and for swung dashes, following the print copy for typeface, number, and spacing of dashes. When a dash is shown followed by the unspaced letter s or letters ed, follow copy using uncontracted braille. The letter indicator is not required before these letters.

      4. Small superior numbers

          (1) With main entry words. Numbers before or after entry words must be transcribed as provided in Section 4b(3) above.

          (2) With cross-references, synonyms, and antonyms. Small superior numbers shown before or after entry words that are printed in small capital letters to indicate cross-references, synonyms, or antonyms must be transcribed as provided in Section 4b(3) above.

          (3) In an etymology. When small superior numbers are shown following words or syllables in an etymology to indicate the tone of those words or syllables, place these numbers in parentheses, unspaced, after the word or syllable.

    8. Numbered or lettered definitions. Consecutively numbered or lettered definitions, senses, or meanings must be brailled as follows.

      1. Ignore any special print typeface used for these numbers and letters.

      2. Follow the print copy for use of particular enclosure signs with numbers and letters, including the use of only a single enclosure. The letter indicator is not required before these letters.

      3. A period must be inserted after each number or letter that is not followed by an enclosure sign. When the symbolic colon described in Section 7b above is shown following a number or letter, it must be placed following the period that is required after the number or letter.

      4. Each number or letter must start in cell 3. However, if a sequence such as 1 a) is shown preceding a definition, braille the sequence on one line beginning in cell 3, with a period inserted after 1 and a blank cell before a). The letter indicator is not required before the letter a.

      5. A definition must be brailled starting on the same line as its preceding number or letter, with runovers left-aligned in cell 5.

    9. Synonyms and antonyms

      1. Each synonym or antonym label, e.g., SYN. or ANT., must start in cell 3, and, if printed in small capital letters, it must be preceded by the double capital indicator.

      2. When a label is followed only by a series of synonyms or antonyms, these words must be brailled starting on the same line as the identifying label, with runovers in cell 5. Ignore print italics or boldface shown for these words. However, cross-references to entry words that are printed in small capitals must be preceded by the double capital indicator.

      3. If a label precedes a series of synonyms or antonyms, each of which is followed by an explanation and/or a usage example, use braille italics to represent print italics or boldface shown to emphasize these words. Words shown in small capitals must be preceded by the double capital indicator. After the label, begin each synonym or antonym in cell 3. followed on the same line by its accompanying text. Runovers must be left-aligned in cell 5.

    10. Illustrations and captions shown in entries

      1. Print illustrations should not be reproduced in braille unless they consist of charts or diagrams that add information not provided in the entries.

      2. Captions should be omitted unless they contain information not included in the glossary, vocabulary, or dictionary entries. When the captions of illustrations are retained in the braille edition, they must be presented according to Rule 17, Section 2.

      3. Omissions of print illustrations and captions must be noted in the braille edition in accordance with Rule 17, Section 1g.

    11. Dictionary volume identification. On the title page of each volume in the braille edition of a dictionary, an inclusive alphabetical sequence of letters that identifies entries contained in the braille volume must be placed on the same line with the individual braille volume number. One blank cell must precede this sequence of letters.

      1. The inclusive alphabetical sequence of letters must be written in uncontracted braille, connected by a hyphen as shown below.

        a-als
        alt-arte
        arter-basi

      2. The same letter sequence mut also be placed on the volume cover in both print and braille.

    12. Facsimiles or excerpts from dictionaries and similar materials. When transcribing facsimiles or excerpts from dictionaries and similar materials, follow the provisions given in preceding sections of this Code rule except as modified by the directives below.

      1. General provisions
          (1) Follow print copy for the numbering of facsimiles labeled as figures or illustrations, using the format provided in Rule 17, Section 1d. Transcribe captions according to Rule 17, Section 2.

          (2) If the excerpt or any part of it is shown in a box or set off by lines, use the horizontal line symbols provided in Rule 6, Section 3b(1).

          (3) When a facsimile or excerpt occupies a full print page, see Rule 1, Section 7a(4) for the required transcriber's notes.

          (4) Marginal labels and/or commentaries shown with a facsimile or excerpt must be transcribed as provided in Rule 12, Section 5b.

      2. Facsimile with table of pronunciation in tabular format

          (1) Regardless of its placement in print, the table of pronunciation must be transcribed before other material in the facsimile, using the format provided in Rule 18, Section 1d.

          (2) When special braille symbols required in the facsimile are not used elsewhere in the braille volume and therefore are not included in the special symbols list, a transcriber's note must be inserted before the facsimile to identify the symbols provided in Rule 18 to represent particular print signs for pronunciation enclosures, syllable stress, and syllable division. Additionally, the transcriber's note must identify braille symbols given in Rule 5 to represent other special print signs shown in the facsimile, e.g., the symbolic colon, swung dash, and arrowheads.

            (a) When no more than three special braille symbols are to be identified, include them within the normally indented paragraph(s) of the transcriber's note.

            (b) If four or more special braille symbols require identification, they must be brailled as provided in Rule 18, Sections 1d(4)(b)-(f).

              [1] A blank line must precede and follow this list.

              [2] Symbols must be listed in the following order: pronunciation enclosure symbols, syllable stress symbols, syllable division symbols, diacritic symbols (listed in alphabetical order), other special symbols. When appropriate, list the symbols under cell-5 category headings.

      3. Facsimile with summary pronunciation table in paragraph format. A dictionary facsimile that contains an abbreviated or summary table of pronunciation printed in linear paragraph form, must be transcribed as follows.

        (1) If the pronunciation table is shown with other dictionary material, as when the facsimile of an entire dictionary page shows a summary table printed at the bottom of the page, the pronunciation table must be transcribed before other material in the excerpt.

        (2) The summary pronunciation table must be brailled as printed -- it must not be transcribed in the usual list format. A statement to this effect must be included in a transcriber's note inserted preceding the excerpt, similar to the following.

          Pronunciation key is given first and brailled as printed, in paragraph form

          (3) Follow the directives given in Section 12b(2) above for the content and format of the transcriber's note.

          (4) Example words in a summary pronunciation key

            (a) Begin the key in cell 1, with runovers also in cell 1. Follow print copy for the punctuation and spacing of example words.

            (b) Ignore print use of special typeface for example words.

            (c) Example words must be written only in uncontracted braille. Do not repeat the words in contracted form.

            (d) If an example word shows diacritic notation, it must first be transcribed according to the provisions given in Rule 18, Section 3. This transcription must be followed, after one blank cell, by the uncontracted form of the example word enclosed in parentheses. Do not repeat the word in its contracted form.

      4. Facsimiles without a table of pronunciation If a dictionary facsimile or excerpt shows pronunciation notation but does not include a pronunciation key, insert a transcriber's note before the excerpt to explain any special braille usage and to identify braille symbols provided in Rule 18 to represent the particular print pronunciation system, signs of enclosure, syllable stress, and syllable division that are shown. Additionally, the transcriber's note must identify the braille symbols provided in Rule 5 to represent other special print signs that are shown, e.g., the symbolic colon, swung dash, and arrowheads.

          (1) When no more than three special symbols are to be identified, include them within the normally indented paragraph(s) of the transcriber's note.

          (2) If four or more special braille symbols require identification, they must be brailled as provided in Rule 18, Sections 1d(4)(b)-(f).

            (a) A blank line must precede and follow the list.

            (b) Symbols must be listed in the following order: pronunciation enclosure symbols, syllable stress symbols, syllable division symbols, diacritic symbols (in alphabetical order), other special symbols. When appropriate, list the symbols under cell-5 category headings.

            (c) Do not include any of these symbols in the special symbols list at the front of the braille volume unless the use of the same symbols is required throughout the volume.

      5. Facsimiles or excerpts of dictionary entries
          (1) When transcribing main entry words and subentries shown in dictionary excerpts, follow the provisions for indention and format that are given in Sections 3 and 4 above. (2) Follow the directives given in Sections 5-10 above when transcribing facsimiles of dictionary entries. (3) If print page guide words are shown with a dictionary facsimile they must be included in the braille edition, using the format provided in Sections 1f(1)(a)-(c) above.


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