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Rendition Markers

It might be good to establish other rendition markers than cf. (confer), abr. (abridged), and using quotation marks for verbatim quotes, since there are different sorts of renditions. Just a few letters of the alphabet have in them to signal briefly and neatly what kind of rendering is at work (or play). Rendition markers used on this site may be without any period (.) at the end: thus, abr and not abr. may be found (it varies).

There are many ways to modify an original expression if we should choose. Rendition markers are shorthand ways of telling which sort of rendition is at work, but if you use one, see to it that it is accepted, to avoid backlashes or untoward reactions. Dictionaries often contains a set of space-saving, abridged terms. There are also whole books on abbreviations.

Below are some accepted rendition markers, like cf, and purposes they serve. In addition are some others used on the site. All are not much established elsewhere, however. Advantages may include: short, established markers - like abr and cf - hardly distract as much as the longer terms they stand for; seldom weary a reader's attention as much as many long terms repeatedly; and can thus assist the focus on meanings or content of phrases.

Markers, Meanings, Uses

Abr - Abridged

'Abr' is a common abbreviation. Abridgements bring basic meanings to the fore more easily as long as they are understood, for the more we abridge a phrase, the more possible meanings it could acquire. So there is a limits into this craft too.

Some abridgements have got established meanings. 'Abr." (abridged, abridgement), abbr. (abbreviated, abbreviation) and 'abbrev. (abbreviated, abbreviation).

Cf (from 'confer') - compare

This much used abridgement is often used throughout the academic world. It refer to another source, text, or something else to compare with.

Cr - Crossed, or au contraire

A mark of disagreement that could be used if your response to something you refer to, signals "to the contrary". Thus, 'Cr' is a mark of disagreement; gainsaying something or someone.

de - 'Deduced from'

The French word 'de is used thoughout text references after author names in the sense of 'avec', on, 'with', con (Latin), - in all cases: 'deduced from'. The marker 'de' may also be used for shuffled gist or when statements and phrases of others get twisted and turned, in the end to become something others might not have meant at all. In such cases one may claim the changed phrases or segments as one's own, or to say they are influenced somehow, however that might be. The signal 'de' is used in the same way as 'with' (further down).

Mod - Modified

'Mod' is a brief way of telling: "Rendered, modified". Rather often it suggests, "Toned down to get more reasonable," or "Toned down - nuanced". On this site, 'Mod' is added to some phrases; they take off from big talk with a sensible kernel or more in it. When altered and nuanced some drastic or exaggerating phrases could get helpful, all in all. At any rate, 'Mod' is a brief way of signalling "modified for some reason". One may for example tailor several phrases from different authors and come up with a blend that may seem new and fresh. It is possible.

So, 'Mod' may be used here in case tough reservations or other articulations are preferrable, or stern carefulness could be needed. 'Mod' may also be used to denote a mishmash "quote", i.e., a concoction of isolated segments put together.

Op - "Opposed to," against, or "contrast it with -"

Clearly against statements, claims or tenets alluded to or referred to, as the case may be.

Hum (or heh) - Humorous abstract

For the fun of it, but persons differ. What one person finds humorous, another does not. That is a caveat.

With (+ or |) - Selected keynotes assembled

'With' added to names and book titles signals that the phrase or paragraph in these pages is influenced by some other or others and thus deduced somehow. "With"may also be used for shuffled gist or when statements and phrases of others get twisted and turned, in the end to become something others did not mean. In such cases one may claim the changed phrases or segments as one's own, or suggest having one or several influences somewhere, whatever that or they might be.

Like a new dress sewn from gathered pieces

A tailor or fashion-designer may produce a modest or fashionable dress from several pieces of cloth. Similarly with meanings, one-liners and other phrases or periods. There are skills that go into it, tastes and flair.

Some have borrowed phrases or one-liners from others and put their own names behind that. It is not uncommon in the citation area. And some borrow and change the phrases for some reason, and get a new angle, a new outlook, something interesting that owes a little here, a little there, but which is new. In such cases I either put an asterix behind the phrase, or TK or something, or nothing. I tend to prefer "nothing" a lot.

Established or standardised abbreviations can make writing much easier and more accurate. Here are some regular ones: [Link]

The most common abbreviations used in the Oxford English Dictionary:

More on Abbreviations

Ellipses. If we want to remove something from the quotation in order to make it more pregnant to our purposes, more "snappy", and so on, we cut off what is not so fit for our own ends and to the point, and put three dots in place of what is left out. The omission of a word, phrase, line, paragraph, or more from a quoted passage is indicated by an ellipsis. It is a standard way of doing it, although different style manuals instruct us to put the omission marks differently. Style manuals offer specified ways of omitting parts of quotations. The Chicago Manual of Style [Csm] is a good and big one.

It could be that in some circumstances, a quotatoin with a wealth of ellipses becomes annoying, and we do not want that. In such cases we may render, paraphrase, passages in question. It is one of the ways to avoid plagiarising others. Paraphrases coupled with salient quotations (abbreviated or not) make up a large part of academic writing.


It is a good task for a matter-of-fact writer not to change the meaning and tone of the original expression he renders or quotes with omitted parts.

I quote a period by Dana Ullman, MPH:

Great Britain's Royal Family, Mahatma Gandhi, John D. Rockefeller, Sr., Tina Turner, and Yehudi Menuhin don't have much in common, except for the fact that they all have been strong supporters of homeopathic medicine. (1) There is one simple reason that these and other respected individuals the world over have supported homeopathic medicine: it works. ◦Ref.]

Nice words. Are they fair? That should be our first concern, methinks. Dropping that issue for now, the period may be abridged in several ways without introducing any bias or opinion of our own:

1. Using "With" - Instead of ellipses far and wide

Great Britain's Royal Family, Mahatma Gandhi, John D. Rockefeller, Sr., Tina Turner, and Yehudi Menuhin have been strong supporters of homeopathic medicine. [With Dana Ullman.

NOTE: A referred-to period has been abbreviated, the significant meaning is still intact, and you show that you render - and in part how - by the bracketed with and the likable house rules that accompany its use. It is, simply, a non-elaborate way of rendering that may be fit in some circumstances.

2. Using "Mod" - Modifying means

'Mod' equals paraphrasing also:

The one reason why the Royal Family and other celebrities have supported homeopathic medicine, is that it works, writes Dana Ullman.
Instead of writing "writes Dana Ullman" and similar, likable phrases fit for paraphrases in well schooled writings, we may modify one or more phrases of his and let others know that they have been modified here, while you refer to the source as our style guide tells us to do:
The one reason why the Royal Family and other celebrities have supported homeopathic medicine, is that it works [Mod Dana Ullman].

Thus, [Mod Dana Ullman] typically means "Dana Ullman as rendered /modified by me". Again, the "mod" helps keeping some things "sweet and short," hopefully. I have found it too useful to discard it. Maybe I never will.

3. "Abr" - Abridging things, sometimes with offhand-looking effects etc

If we cut away much of one or more sentences, sometimes the phrases and segments we end up with yet express fairly what the author we cite or "cite" could have in mind. The general aim is to reduce nuisances.

Yet it happens that an abbreviation give rise to divergent interpretations. Some things depend on which standards are to be met, but fun may be had with quotations and half-quotations, and that is a fit point for lovers of fun.

By closing the gaps" that ellipes mark, there is a chance that some extract-like, terse statements may look funny, or biased, or wrong, and so on. If you are free to seem offhand-like and casual, thorough abbreviations may help a laugh or three. It depends on the skills of writers and the mental associations called forth in readers.

So: We may insert three dots in a row to show where something is left out (ellipses), or we can use markers at the end of the line or paragraph that say so in one or more ways and may prove all right or helpful; and that is the idea of very sound study methods. [Cf. lojong]


Coded markers like cf. and abr. and the rest of them - also acronyms for whole works and much else - can make referring and reading easier. So it is much used. A well defined corpus of works, such as the books of the Bible, can be referred to by abridged book titles.


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