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Entities

Without getting too involved in the precise technicalities of the terminology, XML brings markup a step closer to the world of object orientation, as in object-oriented programming. The basic object in XML's world is the entity, be it the XML document entity itself, the elements it contains, or the internal and external entities that it references.

The DTD itself is, of course, also an external entity (a special type of parameter entity, in fact) that the document references, but the relationship is a little more complex than this. The DTD describes a class of XML document entities, of which the actual XML document is an instantiation.


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