Proceedings chapter
Open access

Automatic Normalisation of Middle French and its Impact on Productivity

Presented at Torino, 25 May, 2024
PublisherTorino, Italia : ELRA
Publication date2024-05

This paper presents a study on automatic normalisation of 16th century documents written in Middle French. These documents present a large variety of wordforms which require spelling normalisation to facilitate downstream linguistic and historical studies. We frame the normalisation process as a machine translation task starting with a strong baseline leveraging a pre-trained encoder–decoder model. We propose to improve this baseline by combining synthetic data generation methods and producing artificial training data, thus tackling the lack of parallel corpora relevant to our task. The evaluation of our approach is twofold, in addition to automatic metrics relying on gold references, we evaluate our models through post-editing of their outputs. This evaluation method directly measures the productivity gain brought by our models to experts conducting the normalisation task manually. Results show a 20+ token per minute increase in productivity when using automatic normalisation compared to normalising text from scratch. The manually post-edited dataset resulting from our study is the first parallel corpus of normalised 16th century Middle French to be publicly released, along with the synthetic data and the automatic normalisation models used and trained in the presented work.

  • Intralingual diachronic translation
  • Middle French
  • Archive
  • Normalisation
  • Productivity
Research group
Citation (ISO format)
RUBINO, Raphaël et al. Automatic Normalisation of Middle French and its Impact on Productivity. In: Proceedings of the Third Workshop on Language Technologies for Historical and Ancient Languages (LT4HALA) @ LREC-COLING-2024. Torino. Torino, Italia : ELRA, 2024. p. 176–189.
Main files (1)
Proceedings chapter (Published version)
Secondary files (1)
  • PID : unige:177414

Technical informations

Creation05/27/2024 11:46:17 AM
First validation05/30/2024 7:21:59 AM
Update time05/30/2024 7:21:59 AM
Status update05/30/2024 7:21:59 AM
Last indexation05/30/2024 7:22:21 AM
All rights reserved by Archive ouverte UNIGE and the University of GenevaunigeBlack