REC-xml-19980210: default attribute values

Richard Emberson emberson at
Thu Oct 15 00:12:38 BST 1998

Section 3.3.2:

  "If a default value is declared, when an XML processor encounters 
  an omitted attribute, it is to behave as though the attribute 
  were present with the declared default value."

Section 2.9, Validity Constraint: Standalone Document Declaration:

  "...attributes with default values, if elements to which
  these attributes apply appear in the document without
  specifications of values for these attributes,..."

If the XML processor always automatically produces such
attributes with their default values when they are missing, 
how can the Validity Constraint ever be true?

Does the checking of this Validity Constraint occur before
the XML processor makes its correction?

Richard Emberson
emberson at

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