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Request for verification[edit]

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The following information has failed Wiktionary's verification process.

Failure to be verified may either mean that this information is fabricated, or is merely beyond our resources to confirm. We have archived here the disputed information, the verification discussion, and any documentation gathered so far, pending further evidence.
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Sense requested for verification: George Washington, the Commander in Chief of the Continental Army and first President of the United States of America, from 1789 to 1797.[1]

Rfv-sense. Needs cites of attributive use referring to the person. Least controversial is as an adjective. See Wiktionary:Requests for deletion#Washington. (No RfD at entry) DCDuring TALK 19:27, 6 December 2008 (UTC)

cited in attributive use. DCDuring TALK 20:12, 6 December 2008 (UTC)
Would "Washingtonian" used in reference to G. Washington be considered attributive? E.g.:
  • 2005, John W. Matviko, The American President in Popular Culture, p. 4:
    By appearing in uniform, Jackson was able to convey his strong character through these images. Jackson had seized on one element of the Washingtonian myth and clung to it.
bd2412 T 05:26, 9 December 2008 (UTC)
No. That's a different derivative word. Attributive use would include items like "Washington administration", "Washington Monument", "Washington Turnpike", etc. where Washington's surname is used itself as if it were an adjective, to describe something associated with him, his philosophy, or in his honor. --EncycloPetey 06:46, 9 December 2008 (UTC)
I've added Washington's Birthday as an entry, which should settle this discussion, as it is clearly used attributively here. --Jackofclubs 08:36, 16 December 2008 (UTC)
I do not see how a regularly created genitive is the same as an attributive use of a noun. --Duncan 15:38, 16 December 2008 (UTC)
It doesn't. Possessive use is not the same as attributive use. --EncycloPetey 18:54, 16 December 2008 (UTC)

RFV failed, sense removed. —RuakhTALK 15:49, 2 November 2009 (UTC)

Explanation of the failure in spite of Citations:Washington: The citations provided to Citations:Washington are objectionable for the purpose of documenting attributive use of "Washington" in the disputed sense. If anyone disagrees, let them reopen the issue of attestability of the disputed sense of "Washington". --Dan Polansky 13:54, 26 February 2010 (UTC)
Though I no longer recollect the specifics of the year-old search for attributive use, the citations of attributive use do not provide sufficient support any particular sense apart from an encyclopedic reference to the man George Washington. If such had been abundantly available I would have used them, though I would be more cautious and able now in selecting citations. IOW, my claim in December 2008 that the sense was cited in attributive use does not seem valid to me now. DCDuring TALK 15:30, 26 February 2010 (UTC)

Request for verification (2)[edit]

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The following information has failed Wiktionary's verification process.

Failure to be verified may either mean that this information is fabricated, or is merely beyond our resources to confirm. We have archived here the disputed information, the verification discussion, and any documentation gathered so far, pending further evidence.
Do not re-add this information to the article without also submitting proof that it meets Wiktionary's criteria for inclusion.

Sense requested for deletion and verification: George Washington, the Commander in Chief of the Continental Army and first President of the United States of America, from 1789 to 1797.[2]

Does not belong in Wiktionary. --Yair rand 18:01, 17 September 2009 (UTC)

Most good dictionaries have them (at least, American dictionaries have them). Why don’t they belong, do you think? —Stephen 18:10, 17 September 2009 (UTC)
See WT:CFI#Names of specific entities: "...George Walker Bush thus should not be included. ...and Jeffersonian (an adjective) should be included, Thomas Jefferson (which isn’t used attributively) should not." --Yair rand 19:03, 17 September 2009 (UTC)
Jefferson and Thomas Jefferson are two different things. Which one are you talking about? —Stephen 19:07, 17 September 2009 (UTC)
I'm talking about Jefferson definition #2:

Thomas Jefferson (1743-1826); the third President of the United States (1801–1809), principal author of the US Declaration of Independence (1776), and one of the most influential founders of the United States. Major events during his presidency include the Louisiana Purchase (1803), the Embargo Act of 1807, and the Lewis and Clark Expedition (1804–1806). --Yair rand 19:14, 17 September 2009 (UTC)

move the actual people to the etymology where there are other sense. Conrad.Irwin 19:24, 17 September 2009 (UTC)
The examples in CFI, ELE and elsewhere are not authoritative. For example "information" is claimed to be the exemplar of an uncountable noun in Appendix:Glossary, when it actually has a sense that forms a plural.
Our standard for the proper nouns senses is actual attestation of attributive use of the word, which is an RfV matter. The cat Garfield seems more likely to have such attestable use than the president. DCDuring TALK 19:26, 17 September 2009 (UTC)
Strong Keep (all). They are used, singly, in very many texts to mean the US president with that surname. People need to know that meaning. SemperBlotto 07:08, 18 September 2009 (UTC)
Delete sense. As surnames, they should be kept; of course. But the meaning a specific person with that surname is something common to all surnames and to everybody (including you and me), and would be best addressed through a link to the Wikipedia page dealing with this surname. Otherwise, notability criteria would be necessary, and they should not be required here (all words are accepted). Lmaltier 14:17, 19 September 2009 (UTC)
There's no need for notability criteria. The only criterion needed is that the surname alone is used to refer to the person, without the referent being explained or obvious from context. Most US presidents, Canadian and modern British prime ministers, etc., meet this test without much question; not because they meet any standard of encyclopedic notability, but simply because their surnames have demonstrably entered the lexicon. Similarly Foucault, Kant, Hegel, Bach, Beethoven, et al. -- Visviva 16:58, 19 September 2009 (UTC)
Your own surname used alone has probably entered the lexicon, at least for some people that know you. But I don't think you would like to enter yourself as a sense of this word. This is what I mean by notability criterion, and this is why I don't think it's a good idea. As a word, it's a surname, nothing else. However, if the translation of this word in a language (e.g. Russian) is different depending on the person, all possible translations should be given, with appropriate comments. Lmaltier 21:43, 19 September 2009 (UTC)
Well, supposing that my surname -- let's call it "Smith" -- had indeed entered my friends' lexicon. And suppose that at least three of my friends had published independent works which referred to me as "Smith", without any further explanation, because they assumed that the reader would immediately understand the Smith to whom they referred. In such a case -- and only in such a case -- I would certainly merit my own sense in the Smith entry. -- Visviva 09:35, 20 September 2009 (UTC)
I think that what you explain is a typical example of a notability criterion. Lmaltier 05:48, 22 September 2009 (UTC)
  • Move to RfV for attributive use citations. All accept "Garfield" have a reasonable to excellent chance of being attestable in attributive use. I enjoy demonstrating errors in our own documentation, so "Jefferson" will get my immediate attention. DCDuring TALK 16:17, 19 September 2009 (UTC)
  • Strong keep per SemperBlotto. There should be no need for attributive use (as there would be for "James Garfield" or "Thomas Jefferson") because these are not proper names in the first place. If policy says otherwise -- and I don't think it actually does -- then the policy is wrong. -- Visviva 16:58, 19 September 2009 (UTC)
  • Strong keep for all, as per SemperBlotto. Usage is effectivly attributive, as it means the president without other mention being included. Should also accept most major world leaders. --Dmol 21:55, 19 September 2009 (UTC)
You missed the part where the guideline says “attributive,” and not “eddectively attributive.”
Everyone, please don't waste your and my valuable time by voting—this is not about self-gratification. Either get on with citing these “words” according to the guideline, or propose a change to the guideline. Michael Z. 2009-09-19 23:56 z
Why cite if someone decides it's not such a matter? If it were kept, it might not be RfV'd. Once it is here it has to play out. I'm not sure that the process can be simplified when both matters are potentially at issue. DCDuring TALK 00:15, 20 September 2009 (UTC)
AFAICR we have always treated RFD as a vote. Not saying it's particularly wise, but it is what we've done. As for the guideline, it says clearly that surnames should be included. And if we're going to include them, it should be rather obvious that we should include all senses that a person might encounter and need to look up. -- Visviva 09:22, 20 September 2009 (UTC)
No ... it was never a "vote", and never intended to be; the idea is that there is, or should be, a right answer. The bolded "keep" or "delete" is just a way of highlighting the summary of an opinion. See, for example, at the top of WT:RFV: Verification is accomplished by the gathering of information, not of votes. Robert Ullmann 09:30, 20 September 2009 (UTC)
But this is RFD, not RFV. I could have been more precise and said that we always treated votes as indicators of consensus (or the lack thereof). It has generally been considered highly improper to delete an RFD'd entry that has a majority of editors (or even a large minority of editors) opposing deletion. If that really doesn't sound familiar, I can only conclude that we have been contributing to different projects. ;-) -- Visviva 09:38, 20 September 2009 (UTC)
I think in that case, surnames like Jackson and Johnson are missing a lot of senses. However I'd like to see these deleted as POV and just generally that surely a lot of people called Adams, Jackson etc. I wonder if George Washington could be cited attributively, would it meet CFI? I say yes, it's a proper noun, widely known and used attributively, right? There's nothing that prohibits it in our rules. Mglovesfun (talk) 08:31, 20 September 2009 (UTC)
Yes WT:CFI confirms it. Therefore I added Michael Jackson to Jackson and RFD'ed it at the same time. Genius! Mglovesfun (talk) 08:34, 20 September 2009 (UTC)
FWIW I've already got two attributive uses of Michael Jackson. This is an excellent example of of why this proper noun policy makes no sense. Why is attributive use so important? As far as I can see, we never refuse proper nouns as long as they are used attributively. I'd be pretty surprised if more than three cites for George Washington weren't available. WT:CFI#Names of specific entities actually says "...George Walker Bush thus should not be included unless used attributively. Again, George Walker Bush has a legitimate chance to get an entry here. Mglovesfun (talk) 08:41, 20 September 2009 (UTC)
Attributive use is important because it gives us something useful to say about them, as a dictionary. If a proper name is used only to refer to its literal referent, a Wiktionary entry for that name serves no purpose to anyone. If it used as a byword to suggest some particular quality, that is a fact that even Wikipedia is unlikely to include, but which might nonetheless be of great significance to someone puzzled by a name's appearance in a particular context. Likewise for surnames; going to w:Jackson (disambiguation) is not going to give the user much insight as to which of the people listed there is likely to be the "Jackson" mentioned without any context whatsoever in some work. Thus again, there is something useful for us to say about such usage. -- Visviva 09:28, 20 September 2009 (UTC)
I'm not at all convinced there are even three cases where "Jackson" is used to refer to the singer without "Michael Jackson" being specified somewhere nearby (particularly since he isn't exactly the only pop singer by that surname). I'm sure there are some Jacksons besides Andrew who would meet this test, but I doubt if there are very many. -- Visviva 09:18, 20 September 2009 (UTC)
I think I could get three attributive uses for Michael Jackson though. It took me about 2 minutes to get 2. Anyway, I'd better bring this up on WT:BP. Mglovesfun (talk) 17:26, 20 September 2009 (UTC)

Okay, so may I add the senses of specific US presidents to RFV right now, or am I prohibited until this RFD is closed? Michael Z. 2009-09-20 23:09 z

There's no rule, but some knuckles have been rapped for opening an RfV while the RfD was active. If the conversation seems over and this is deemed kept and closed, then the RfV can be opened with a link to the archived discussion.
BTW, If anyone would like to challenge some two-part human names, the following are available for consideration: Arnold Schwartzenegger, Britney Spears, Brigitte Bardot, and Marilyn Monroe. DCDuring TALK 23:40, 20 September 2009 (UTC)
As long as you'll accept any three works that refer to the president as "Garfield" without identifying him elsewhere, I think RFV would be fine. But if that's not the case, it would kind of seem to me like you were trying to use RFV as cover for a policy agenda, which would be somewhat uncool. -- Visviva 11:41, 22 September 2009 (UTC)

(from a wrongly created sub-section, Mglovesfun (talk) 19:33, 25 September 2009 (UTC)) If you delete the George Washington meaning, you will only have to inlcude it in the etymology anyway to explain why the city and state are called Washington. Keep. --Richardb 09:59, 25 September 2009 (UTC)

We do that kind of thing routinely, with a link to the Wikipedia article on the person. I believe that the community considers it a the best way to handle such things. Marilyn Monroe for an example. That entry is also an example of the kinds of usage that might justify keeping a full personal name. DCDuring TALK 12:07, 25 September 2009 (UTC)
Delete, see WT:CFI#Given and family names. This sort of entry could go very far, how about Tony Blair in Blair, or John Major in Major. Sports stars and singers and very well known, how about Michael Jordan in Jordan or Britney Spears in Spears. I'd love to RFV these, but since CFI is so vague on the names of specific entries, nobody would know if they had passed or not, so I think a pure vote like this is best. What do SemperBlotto et al. think of that? —This unsigned comment was added by Mglovesfun (talkcontribs).

Moving to RFV. Mglovesfun (talk) 19:48, 25 December 2009 (UTC)

Although I don't like these entries I believe there is a distinction. An essay on American history might very well mention "Jefferson" throughout and never use the word "Thomas". An essay on pop culture would not mention "Spears" without "Britney", at least the first time she was named — right? Equinox 13:02, 26 December 2009 (UTC)

So there you go, our voters overturn WT:CFI to keep these. They all now need three attributive citations, not that anyone knows what that means. Get ready for disagreement, folks. Mglovesfun (talk) 19:48, 25 December 2009 (UTC)

Fail, senses removed. Mglovesfun (talk) 17:34, 25 February 2010 (UTC)

Keeps and deletes, estimated from the discussion above:

  • Support keep: Stephen, SemperBlotto, Visviva, Dmol, Richardb.
  • Support delete: Lmaltier, Conrad.Irwin, DCDuring, Yair rand, Mglovesfun, Michael Z.

--Dan Polansky 10:48, 26 February 2010 (UTC)

I have restored the sense for the U.S. president: the sense has not failed RFD (5 for keeping, 6 for deletion). As regards RFV, it should be fairly easy to attest; the attributive-use rule has been removed from CFI in this vote: Wiktionary:Votes/pl-2010-05/Names of specific entities. --Dan Polansky 10:59, 23 November 2010 (UTC)

This archival is from a batch of requests, one that involved Washington, Jefferson, Lincoln, Jackson, and Garfield. See the past revision of RFV. --Dan Polansky 11:07, 23 November 2010 (UTC)