Journal Article

Comparing nearly identical treaty texts: a note on the <i>Treaty of Fort Laramie with Sioux, etc., 1851</i> and Levenshtein’s edit distance metric

Charles D. Bernholz and Brian L. Pytlik Zillig

in Literary and Linguistic Computing

Published on behalf of ALLC: The European Association for Digital Humanities

Volume 26, issue 1, pages 5-16
Published in print April 2011 | ISSN: 0268-1145
Published online September 2010 | e-ISSN: 1477-4615 | DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.1093/llc/fqq016
Comparing nearly identical treaty texts: a note on the Treaty of Fort Laramie with Sioux, etc., 1851 and Levenshtein’s edit distance metric

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Vladimir Levenshtein’s edit distance algorithm is used to reveal disparities between delimiter stripped texts of the Senate amended Treaty of Fort Laramie with Sioux, etc., 1851 as corrected in a previous study, and of other federal copies of this transaction. All of the latter deviated markedly from that newly created version, reflecting errors of exclusion, of the absence in some transcripts of the Senate modification, of editorial decisions made by Charles J. Kappler during the preparation of his treaty compilations at the beginning of the twentieth century, and of spelling. These results confirmed that the instrument was until now never published in its complete formal state. This study may serve as a model for future text analyses that might benefit from the employment of Levenshtein’s metric.

Journal Article.  6714 words. 

Subjects: Language Teaching and Learning ; Computational Linguistics ; Bibliography ; Digital Lifestyle ; Information and Communication Technologies

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