Peirce's writings are presented (as nearly as possible) in a clear-text format. Omitted passages in abridged selections are identified (by page or table reference) within italic brackets at the point of abridgement. All other insertions are the result of authorial rather than editorial circumstances. Situations caused by various kinds of interruptions or incompleteness in Peirce's surviving texts are indicated as follows:
All page, column, and line numbers refer to the present edition (each selection's opening page title block, running heads, diagrams, drawings, and illustrations do not count as lines). In most cases, text or titles within a diagram or drawing will not need a line reference; if necessary for clarity, line numbers are counted independently within each figure.
Unbordered data tables are included in the page line count, but lines in complicated data tables are enclosed in lined borders and counted independently from the surrounding text lines. Since some columns often span two or more subordinate columns in Peirce's scientific tables, the boundary lines around column blocks (counted left to right, top to bottom) are used to locate a point of variation. In such bordered table references, the page number is followed by a column block number (in parenthesis) and a row number within the block. If a page includes more than one table, a table number (t1, t2, etc.) will be included with the parenthetical block number. Footnote lines are also counted separately from the text and are indicated by "n" following the page number.
A line may include more than one occurrence of a word. If such a word is the subject of an apparatus entry, a parenthetical number following the line number indicates the specific occurrence of the keyed reading in that line. When the keyed reading refers to more than one occurrence, all are identified parenthetically.
Bibliographical references used throughout the editorial portions of the volume are identifed in the "Bibliographical Abbreviations" summary that immediately precedes the Introduction. Editorial symbols found in the editorial back-matter are defined as follows:
A roman closing bracket (]) follows the initial reading of an apparatus entry. In most cases this initial reading, or lemma, represents the reading of the present (critically edited) edition. Rejected readings (either from the copy-text or subsequent forms of the text) appear to the right of the bracket.
A caret (^) in the rejected reading to the right of the bracket signals the absence of punctuation, operational signs (e.g., +, -, or the mid-line multiplication dot), or mathematical and scientific symbols (e.g., degrees, minutes, seconds). Absence of punctuation in the accepted reading (lemma) will be represented as clear text, without the caret.
A wavy dash (~) in the rejected reading to the right of the bracket stands for the same word in the accepted reading to the left of the bracket. It is used as a place holder for words in an entry where the only variant is a symbol such as a mark of punctuation or an operational sign.
The word [formula] or [equation], used (as shown here) in italic brackets, stands for a lengthy or intricate mathematical reading. It is used in the lemma as a place holder representing the accepted reading in the present (critically edited) edition when the rejected reading to the right involves only a few simple changes (such as a mark of punctuation or an operational sign).
An arrow () within the pagination descriptions of Peirce's manuscripts indicates that a page has been renumbered within the sequence. Thus, 12 indicates that Peirce renumbered manuscript page 1 as page 2.
The abbreviation et seq. after a page and line number indicates a "class-emendation": all readings subsequent to the cited reading are identically emended (and exceptions are listed after the word Except ). If the same emendation occurs more than once, but in scattered places in a given item, the additional instances are listed after the word Also.
The abbreviations ital. and rom. indicate that the reading in the lemma was originally printed either in italic type (underlined in manuscripts) or in roman type (not underlined in manuscripts or in italic typescripts).
An imploded diamond () preceding an emendation indicates that the reading has a significant history of authorial alteration within the copy-text, and invites the reader to examine the corresponding entry in the Alterations list.
In a few cases, when Peirce's own alteration to a passage has to be emended, an imploded diamond () preceding page and line numbers indicates that all or part of the lemma in the Alterations list represents the superseded reading to the right of the lemma at the same point in the Emendations list. The imploded diamond makes this connection across the two lists, and invites the reader to examine the corresponding lemma in the Emendations list for the exact reading in the edition text.
The following non-punctuated italicized abbreviations are adopted to sometimes describe the nature of the alteration: ab for above, add for added (i.e., inscribed either on the line without being squeezed in, or very close to the line without interlining, or in the margin), aft for after, bef for before, bel for below, del for deleted by hand, del-t for deleted by typing over, ins for inserted (i.e., squeezed in on the line), intl for interlined (i.e., set between two lines, or above or below a line), and intl-c for interlined with caret or a careted line.
A small black diamond () within an alteration description indicates that the immediately following words are affected by the description enclosed within the next set of square brackets. When there is no ambiguity as to the words affected by the description within brackets, no black diamond is used.