The editor has normally studied all the extant manuscript and printed material that witnesses the passage of the work through time and has compared at least the early ones word-for-word and comma-for-comma. This usually computer- and machine-assisted process is called “collation” and it forms the basis of an extended report in the edition, usually called the Historical Collation. For practicality, it is often restricted to variant wordings (“substantives”), leaving the now-orphaned commas and other “accidentals” to look after themselves.

(Eggert 2013, 103)

Contributed by Jesse. View changelog.