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Matching only text nodes with certain (complicated) p

Subject: Matching only text nodes with certain (complicated) properties
From: "David B?rgin" <david.buergin@xxxxxxxxxxxxx>
Date: Fri, 09 Jan 2009 18:07:47 +0100
 Matching only text nodes with certain (complicated)  p
Hello list!

There's this matching problem I cannot solve:

In one template of my XSL stylesheet I'd like to match a text node with certain properties. Namely, the template should match for any text node where the nearest preceding non-empty text node is farther away than (= comes before) the nearest preceding <pb/> (page-break milestone element).

I'll give you some context on what I'm trying to do: I have a TEI P5 document (http://www.tei-c.org/), where page breaks are indicated by milestone elements of the form <pb n="[number]"/>. These can occur anywhere.
From this TEI document, I'd like to generate XHTML with the <pb/> elements,
of course, removed, but now represented as a <span> containing the page number at the very beginning of the next text node. (In the browser presentation, this <span> would then be floated outside regular flow -- using CSS -- as page indicators in the margin of the page ... is what I'd planned to do, at least)

Here's an example fragment from the source document (here with a list inside another list):

...
<item>
 before a vowel.
 <pb n="26"/>
 <list>
   <item n="a">The <mentioned>thingy</mentioned>
...

I'm trying to match nodes such as "The " in the last line of the example, where the nearest preceding text node "before a vowel." is farther away than the nearest preceding <pb/>, "<pb n="26"/>". Before "The " I would then insert my <span>, "<span>Page <xsl:value-of select="[select preceding pb/@n]/></span>". In this way, the page break information would effectively be moved to right before the next following text node, everywhere.

As far as I understand it, the main problem is that the expression I have to construct for matching can't rely simply on the preceding:: or ancestor:: axes since the <pb/> can really appear anywhere in the tree.

I found related questions in the archive but nothing that would help, so I appreciate any help very much.

David B|rgin

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