User talk:Paul G/archive

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Hi Paul,

I don't like that you are taking away the regular female and plural forms of the translations. They can also be of interest (having double meanings or meanings in different languages). I like to create a web of interrelated words. I'm not going to be putting them back though, so if you are convinced this is better, you probably should just go on. One day I want to convert all this to a relational database I'm planning to make. And at that point I don't want to have the software need to guess the female, plural or diminutive form will probably be regular, just because it is omitted. My software cannot know this for sure, just like somebody who doesn't know the language can never know that for sure.Polyglot 10:51, 17 Dec 2003 (UTC)

Hi Polyglot, thanks for your comment. I take them away only because I feel they belong in the foreign-language entry, as is done in most bilingual dictionaries, and because, to my mind, they clutter the entry. I don't want to antagonise and I can understand your point of view, so I shan't take any more away. You might have noticed though that I do include irregular plurals or feminine forms in any new translations that I add. In future I'll try to make it my habit to include regular plurals and feminine forms too.
By the way, what is your name? You are one of the major contributors to this site but you don't seem to be contactable via your user page. Paul G 14:20, 17 Dec 2003 (UTC)
My name is Jo. You can contact me by email through the interface at the bottom on my personal page. (It might not work this month since the receiving mail box has exceeded its transfer limit...). But I will notice if you put something on my talk page. Further, I don't need any (name) recognition for my work. Being able to add stuff here and contribute to a worthy cause, is what gives me satisfaction. This is what I think I'm reasonably good at and what I can do to contribute to the free (software/content) world.
Maybe they do clutter the translations and maybe it is better to add flexed forms to pages dedicated to those words. It takes more effort to instantly create those pages, to be able to add that info though. You shouldn't feel compelled to actually add them if you think it clutters the entries.
If you keep up the pace at which you are revising entries and adding to them, you will easily pass me by as one of the major contributors :-) I'm glad you are taking care of adding italian and correcting the goof ups I made in French. (It's not my language, although I speak/spoke it reasonably well).

By the way: where are you from? France? Switzerland? Italy?Polyglot 14:57, 17 Dec 2003 (UTC)

Hi Jo. I'm from the UK. My mother tongue is English and I speak French and Italian. My French comes from school and living for a year in France - I have studied it on and off for over 20 years; I taught myself Italian about 15 years ago. I am half-Italian, so Italian is maybe more my second language than French. Paul G 17:13, 17 Dec 2003 (UTC)
Hi Paul, I live in Belgium, so I didn't have to go far for French. I also studied at a French school for a year, which improved my French. but now I lack practice. So I'm afraid I'm making some goofs from time to time. Good to see that you are working so hard on Wiktionary the last few days! I had a period I could do the same back in July. Now there are other priorities fighting for attention...
Would it be possible to remove the links from the titles of the articles you are editing. I see that you are leaving them. They are not functional though and they only mean more load for the server.Polyglot 11:08, 19 Dec 2003 (UTC)
I don't understand - could you explain? -- Paul G 16:07, 19 Dec 2003 (UTC)
Well. The server is being overloaded. So there shouldn't be any extraneous, superfluous links in the entries. The server needs to check whether the links exist in order to color them blue or red, so for every link it needs to do database lookup.
Most people who consult a dictionary know what Nouns, verbs and translations are, so they don't need links for those. So, in fact, I'm asking exactly the same thing as webkid. He calls it wikifying. When I say that I wikified an entry, I usually mean that I made it accord to the 'standard'. Whatever the standard may be, that's not very clear... Don't worry about any inconvenience. You are doing a good job and I hope to see you go on doing it for a long time. Thanks, Polyglot 18:53, 19 Dec 2003 (UTC)
OK, I understand now. Thanks. There is a lot of work to do here... -- Paul G 07:51, 20 Dec 2003 (UTC)

Hello, Paul G. Could you please NOT wikify nouns, verbs, translations etc? Thank you in advance! Webkid 15:33, 19 Dec 2003 (UTC)

OK, no problem. My usual plea here - I've only been doing this because I've seen it done elsewhere. But I'm happy to leave them unwikified as it is less work to do. Sorry if this has caused any problems or inconvenience. -- Paul G 16:07, 19 Dec 2003 (UTC)

Hi Paul,

I have a tip for you. Instead of saving a page to see what it looks like, you can also press the Show preview button. You only have to make sure not to forget to save it in the end. If you prefer to do a lot of minor updates, that is fine too. I'm only telling you because maybe you hadn't seen the feature. Keep up the good work and best wishes for 2004! Polyglot 16:21, 6 Jan 2004 (UTC)

Hi Jo, and a happy New Year to you too. Thanks for the tip. I'm aware of the Show preview button but don't really use it. I think I will from now on, as I often find that I edit a page and then find out that something is not quite right. It can take a long time to get a page right when the server is slow. -- Paul G 16:44, 6 Jan 2004 (UTC)

Hi Paul,

What do you think about having entries for quatre-vingt instead of quatre-vingts and even referring to the wrong one on the page for twenty four?Polyglot 11:13, 11 Jan 2004 (UTC)

Hi Jo,

"Quatre-vingt" is used in compounds (for the numbers 81 to 99, higher numbers ending in those number and the ordinal numbers corresponding to these cardinal numbers); "quatre-vingts" is 80 and 24 is "vingt-quatre"... I would say that if there is a page for "quatre-vingt", it should just contain cross-references to "quatre-vingts", "quatre-vingt-un", ..., "quatre-vingt-dix-neuf" (or just the first few of these. I think the wrong reference to "quatre-vingt" on 24 should definitely be removed, if it hasn't been already.

Were these done by me? If so, I apologise for not spotting them. Please go ahead and correct them - thanks. -- Paul G 12:17, 11 Jan 2004 (UTC)

OK, I've looked at these pages and see what you mean. Please have a look athe changes have made
I don't think they were done by you. Your French seems to be (a lot) better than mine, so I wanted you to check it out. Thanks! Polyglot 15:31, 11 Jan 2004 (UTC)
Thank you - I have some good French reference texts at home that help a lot! -- Paul G 17:15, 12 Jan 2004 (UTC)

Hi Paul,

Great to see you are adding the SI units. I think it would be interesting to have the abbreviations A for Ampere, Hz for Hertz. Omega character for Ohm. More or less like it's done for the numbers and the elements. What do you think? Polyglot 14:18, 12 Jan 2004 (UTC)

Maybe a link to Wikipedia would be interesting as well. (Maybe I'll get a chance to take care of it myself, tonight) 14:47, 12 Jan 2004 (UTC)

Hi Jo - yes, I thought about these. I think I'll add the symbols to the pages (but not to the list) and definitely the Wikipedia links. Thanks for the suggestsions. -- Paul G 17:15, 12 Jan 2004 (UTC)

Congratulations! As of today you are a sysop on Wiktionary. I hope you are flattered. If you don't like it, I'll ask Tim to undo it. :-) Polyglot 09:57, 17 Jan 2004 (UTC)
Wow, I am indeed! Thank you. What does this enable me to do and give me responsibility for? (Who is Tim?) -- Paul G 11:20, 17 Jan 2004 (UTC)
Tim is a programmer. It enables you to block anonymous users (when they start vandalising Wiktionary). We don't easily block users, but somebody who puts nonsense in 10 different pages within 5 minutes would quickly become a candidate. The problem with blocking IP-addresses is that such an address might be shared by more people (my case) and that it is rather trivial to get another IP address (other provider, new dial up connection, ...).
It allows you to delete pages (after consensus has been reached, so you first put it on votes for deletion).
And you can protect and unprotect pages. This is more applicable to Wikipedia where edit wars are all too common.
Cheers Polyglot 11:49, 17 Jan 2004 (UTC)

Hi Paul. I see you removed the "parallelled" forms from the "parallel" article. In your commit you say you've confirmed it but you haven't told us how/where whereas I have cited some evidence to the contrary on the parallel discussion site. I'll try to check the major print dictionaries today (OED, Macquaire, Collins, Webster, AHD) to reconfirm. Also if it turns out you are correct, there is no need to have the "(British & US)" qualifier without any other entry to contrast it with. Hippietrail 01:11, 18 Feb 2004 (UTC)

Hi Hippietrail - thanks for this. I got my information on "paralleled" from Chambers (1998). It is a well-known exception to the usual British English spelling rules for verbs ending in vowel + l; the same rule applies to "unparalleled". I agree that "British & US" can be removed. I put this in only for emphasis - a bit like a "[sic]", if you like. If you find that "paralleled" is the only correct form in British English, maybe you could add a note commenting on this so that readers do not think it is an error. Is Macquaire a US dictionary? I am not familiar with it. -- Paul G 09:41, 18 Feb 2004 (UTC)
Unfortunately I didn't get to the library today after all but I'll keep it in mind for next time. The info I've found so far on the net says British uses 2 l's for the past participle and also the present participle but oddly I find no information on unparalleled with 2 l's! I wonder if this is some anomoly or maybe the word isn't used in the UK? The Macquarie Dictionary is the Australian national dictionary and has become both the documentor and bible of Australian English. I don't think Canadian or New Zealand or South African English have any such equivalent yet. Hippietrail 10:14, 18 Feb 2004 (UTC)
"Unparalleled" is used in the UK. I would recommend using printed dictionaries over anything on the Net. The OED would give a definite answer. Using Macquarie (or Macquaire?) is going to be a good thing as Australian usage does not always follow UK usage. -- Paul G 13:51, 18 Feb 2004 (UTC)

Hi Paul. Re your changes to "drank". Of course "drank" in English isn't in the imperfect - English doesn't have an imperfect sense like that of Spanish. The English past tense translates both Spanish's preterite and imperfect tenses. "I drank for five hours" = "yo tomaba durante cinco horas". It is not a 1:1 mapping, therefore I include all translations. Hippietrail 10:29, 27 Feb 2004 (UTC)

OK, thanks for the correction. I am not as familiar with Spanish as I am with French or Italian. -- Paul G 10:45, 27 Feb 2004 (UTC)
You're welcome. Sorry if I sounded a bit harsh. Can you tell me how the imperfect is used in French and/or Italian? My Spanish is far from fluent but I've managed to read novels in it and get by in it for a few months at a time overseas so I try to only enter stuff here if I'm fairly sure of it. Hippietrail 10:55, 27 Feb 2004 (UTC)
No problem - it would have been better for me to leave it alone. The imperfect is used in French and Italian to translate a continued or repeated action in the past (eg, "It was raining" - "Il pleuvait", "Pioveva"; "He used to go there often" - "Il y allait souvent", "Ci andava spesso") as opposed to a single, completed action in the past (eg, "It rained yesterday" - "Il a plu hier", "Ha piovuto ieri" (perfect tense) or "Il plut", "Piovve" (simple past [alias the "past historic"]). So, in French, "he drank" is either "il a bu" (perfect) or "il but" (past historic - usually used only in novels); "he was drinking" or "he used to drink" is "il buvait" and "he has drunk" is "il a bu". I don't know how Spanish works in this respect. -- Paul G 11:08, 27 Feb 2004 (UTC)
I asked a Peruvian speaker of Spanish and she confirms that the verb tenses are used exactly like I learned they are used in French.
tomaba, action goes on for a longer duration in the past or is repeated
tomé, action at one specific point of time in the past. (difference with French is that this tense is used all the time, also in spoken language, whereas in French one only sees it written and people look at me funny if I use in speech)
he tomado, more general, but action is certainly not going on anymore in the present. Polyglot 11:51, 27 Feb 2004 (UTC)


About french ton I agree all definitions should be writen in english, and I agree my english was bad. However I did not understand why you deleted some examples. You did not like these examples, did you? I am JeanMichel, from

Hi JeanMichel. I agree I was a little overzealous in editing your contribution. I deleted your examples because I have not seen examples in non-English-language entries. There is no particular reason why this should be true, and I did indeed retain one example. I will therefore restore your examples. Thanks for your contributions - they are appreciated and valuable. (Your English was OK, by the way!) Regards -- Paul G 09:34, 14 Apr 2004 (UTC)

No, a Ponzi scheme is not the same as a pyrimid scheme. I've always seen it capitalized. —Długosz

Thanks for the clarification. -- Paul G 10:18, 21 Apr 2004 (UTC)


Vocabulary Project[edit]

Hi Paul, I have written a program for learning vocabulary. Since you speak several languages I wondered if you might be interested. The program is based on the belief that it is best to learn foreign words by learning typical sentences. Unfortunately I wrote it in qbasic, which can be downloaded here. It also uses images and sound files for alternation and in order to work on the pronunciation. Let me know what you think about it. I currently have files in English, French (with sound), and Spanish. Catalan and Portuguese are in the planning. Corrections or additions are very welcome. The easiest thing to start with for improvements would be adding new vocabulary, sound files or images. A guide to the program will follow soon, although I think it is rather self-explanatory. Get-back-world-respect 15:39, 23 Apr 2004 (UTC)


Hi, Paul, when you create a new entry, could you please also include the Translations section. Even if you do not put any translations in it yourself, it would save the first person who adds a translation a ton of work. This way we need to wade through the whole rigamarole instead of just clicking on the edit by the translations section.—Red Prince 16:58, 26 Apr 2004 (UTC)

Hi Red Prince. Thanks for your suggestion. My practice is to include only the sections that I will be putting any content into, and this is fairly standard on Wiktionary. It is a small amount of effort to type "====Translations====" before adding translations to a page. There are many other sections that could go into an entry, such as synonyms, antonyms, see also, related terms, etymology. There is little point including these until they are written, as they clutter up the entry and make it harder to discern what is what. -- Paul G 17:11, 26 Apr 2004 (UTC)
Sigh. I often just do not add my translations when I see that. It is not that simple a matter. Chances are that two people try to add a translation at the same, and because it takes much more time when we need to wade through the whole thing, it is much more likely to get the infamous message that someone else has modified it while you are trying to modify it. And I just give rather than risk that major annoyance. This is a dictionary, so every word should have its translations, what else is the point of having a dictionary?—Red Prince 17:25, 26 Apr 2004 (UTC)
I'm not sure I understand you. What is it that you need to wade through in order to add translations? I agree that all words need their translations, but I still feel that there is no point in adding the header "Translations" if I am going to leave that section empty. -- Paul G 17:33, 26 Apr 2004 (UTC)
Never mind, I guess. The difference is that if the header is there, there is a little edit next to it, so we can just click on it and start typing. If it is not there, we need to open the entire thing, scroll down, find the place where to insert the header, and finally start typing. At any rate, I didn't mean to make a big deal out of it. If you don't want to do it, don't do it.—Red Prince 20:37, 26 Apr 2004 (UTC)
Hi Red Prince (maybe I should write this on your talk page...
A dictionary describes words. Translations are only one part of that description. Page down works wonders to go through a page quickly and it's mostly the translation section that takes up the most space in new entries, so it can't be that bad if it's not there yet.
When you get an edit conflict (I am on here quite often and get them very infrequently), the text you created is at the bottom, the text saved by the person who edited more quickly than you did (probably because they did less) is on top. It shouldn't be too much of a big deal to merge both and submit them. I can imagine you panic the first time this happens. I know it startled me... But once you know how it works, it's not the end of the world.
Paul, if indeed it means people won't add a translation when the section is not there, maybe we can set it up d'office. It's true that it's going to be needed anyway in almost all the English entries.Polyglot 21:13, 26 Apr 2004 (UTC)

Hi and thanks for posting a note to me. I was a little baffled when I tried to link to [[Types of companies]] and it showed red. I was wondering could it be added to appendices since it is an appendice with translation works. Another thing since you are a sysop: I've been asking for having daily listings of articles that do not contain the string "Finnish" and respectively for every other language. That would be a relatively simple task if we are using mysql 4. It would help finding places to contribute. cheers. --Juxho 11:24, 29 Apr 2004 (UTC)

Hi Juxho, thanks for understanding why I did this. I can move it to the appendices section if you like, although I wonder if it is a little too specialised to go there. There is a danger of the appendices section becoming filled with all kinds of miscellaneous material that might be better off somewhere else. Let me know what you think about this.
Although I am a sysop I am not familiar with mysql 4. Being able to find articles that do not yet contain translations into a particular language would be a useful feature (or skill). I would oblige if I knew how to do it and if it were straightforward to do. -- Paul G 12:36, 29 Apr 2004 (UTC)
select cur_namespace,cur_title from cur where cur_text not like '%Finnish%';
--Juxho 14:35, 29 Apr 2004 (UTC). I got it from TimStarling, but I also heard that SQL queries are just for Developers not sysops anymore. Dunno as I'm not a sysop
There was something somewhere to enter SQL queries, but I don't see it anywhere any more. Maybe as you say only developers can do them now. Oh well, you'll have to keep on pestering them till they do it for you. -- Paul G 15:48, 29 Apr 2004 (UTC)
The database can be downloaded here:
Then you can import it and do the search locally. Not trivial, but not all too hard either. Once that works you can execute all the queries you like, generate a list, wikify it and put it on your home page. Polyglot 16:47, 29 Apr 2004 (UTC)


Hi, I saw you contributed to the conjugations appendix. I added some verbs in German and Catalan, but I am not sure if it makes sense like this. already has all thge conjugations in all the languages, we will never make it that far here. And wikibooks already has or plans to have study guides from all languages to all languages, so this here to me seems to be just redundant. Anyways, I like the projects over here, and maybe we can somehow find a way to link from one page to the other in order not to waste time but still habe a comprehensive dictionary. How about the project for learning - mainly vocabulary - I told you about? Please check my page and let me know. Get-back-world-respect 18:02, 2 May 2004 (UTC)

Hi Get-back-world-respect,
Thanks for adding the Catalan and German links. I've modified these slightly to fit in with the others on the page.
The English link for irregular verbs is simply a list of verbs in English that are irregular. For the conjugations of the verbs (usually just the past tense and the past participle) are found under the verbs themselves. I think it would make sense to do the same with the German and Catalan irregular verbs. Are the verbs in the table the only irregular verbs in Catalan? I think the conjugation of the German verb "sein" belongs under "sein" itself rather than as an example - I don't think it is possible to have a useful example of an irregular verb as all other irregular verbs will be conjugated differently from that example. I think it would be better simply to list the irregular verbs on the German and Catalan pages, as has been done for the English page.
As for redundancy, Wiktionary is the lexical wiki, so anything to do with language belongs here. If wikibooks include conjugations too, I would say that it is that is the redundancy. We could have links to Wikibooks, but maybe Wikibooks should link to Wiktionary instead! I'll have a look at Wikibooks anyway and it might make sense, as you say, to link there before we do much more work on these conjugations ourselves.
I've looked at your page but have not taken the time to download and run the software. I might do this at some point when I make time for it. -- Paul G 06:42, 3 May 2004 (UTC)


Hi Paul,

We are not certain if the word to inventorize exists and can be used. Could you have a look at it? Polyglot 13:49, 7 May 2004 (UTC)

Hm, it's not in, but is in (see ). I don't know what it means. I'll check my dictionaries at home when I get a chance. (By the way, this will need a corresponding "inventorise" if the word is valid.) -- Paul G 15:54, 7 May 2004 (UTC)
I've checked and it's in the Oxford English Dictionary (2nd ed). It means simply "to make an inventory of" and I intend to change the definition to this. The existing definition is too specific, in my opinion. -- Paul G 06:10, 8 May 2004 (UTC)
Many thanks Paul. I really appreciate this! I just dreamt up a definition and I don't think I'm very good at it. I just wanted to put something, anything (as long as it made some sense). Polyglot 17:57, 8 May 2004 (UTC)

Phonetics in Rhymes pages[edit]

Hi Paul.

I've noticed that you've been using a short macron with a double "oo" for the /u:/ sound in the rhyme pages. Unicode has a much better character which does the exact job needed to match non-IPA dictionary pronunciation guides. The down side is that it's not well-supported yet: ͞ 862 035E COMBINING DOUBLE MACRON

I've been using this since I started the non-IPA pronunciations and since the short macron alternative is also ugly I think we may as well use the right character and when fonts get better everything will just work. In the meantime the IPA and SAMPA representations work for everybody else. — Hippietrail 13:17, 14 May 2004 (UTC)

Oh good, thanks for that. I've been wondering how to do it. I'll put them in when I get the time (or perhaps you could kindly fix the few -oo* pages I have done so far). Thanks -- Paul G 13:20, 14 May 2004 (UTC)
No worries. I think I got them all (: — Hippietrail 12:08, 15 May 2004 (UTC)
Thank you :) I'll follow your example in the other "oo" pages. — Paul G 09:33, 17 May 2004 (UTC)

Hi again. I've got another pronunciation suggestion.

I've ranted before in some page but I guess you missed it. I'm not in favour of using /ɪ/ for the final i sound usually spelled -y. Some dictionaries do use the same symbol as for their short i, but just as many use the same symbol as for their long i (or is it long e?), "ē". The AHD is one such case. From what I've read, dialects vary broadly from one extreme to the other. For this reason, a smaller number of wiser dictionaries are now opting to use an extra, non-differentiated, symbol for this morpheme. In IPA we can have the 3-way-distinction /ɪ/ vs /iː/ vs /i/. But luckily, the same works just as well for SAMPA: /I/ vs /i:/ vs /i/, and the non-IPA system (now even more reason to not call it AHD in Wiktionary): /ĭ/ vs /ē/ vs /i/.
I've been using this system on Wiktionary for almost as long as I've been working on the pronunciations section and I think it's very useful. By the way, in my dialect, "-y" doesn't really sound like /ɪ/ or /iː/ - it has the quality of the latter but much shorter. Using the others sounds very unnatural to me though /iː/ probably sounds a bit less alien. — Hippietrail 16:35, 17 May 2004 (UTC)

This is an interesting point. I felt a little uncomfortable changing your final /i/ to /ɪ/ but did it because, as you say, that is the symbol I have seen used dictionaries. However, this pronunciation sounds "posh" to me (RP, if you like), while i: sounds too long. On the other hand, the short i, which transcribes the vowel "i" in Romance languages, seems to fit. So I tend to agree. Thanks for bringing this up. I'll make a note to change these in the rhymes when I have some time. -- Paul G 16:48, 17 May 2004 (UTC)

Hi Paul. I see you're doing the -Vns rhyme now. I've always wondered whether anybody at all actually pronounces /ns/ and /nts/ any differently. It's very difficult for me to make them different without slowing to a phoneme-by-phoneme crawl. I'm not sure if there are some dialects which regularly and obviously differentiate them. Some examples "mince" and "mints", "prince" and "prints". When I consult a regular dictionary they always show different pronunciations but I'm pretty sure a rhyming dictionary listed them as rhymes. They often appear on homophone lists.

Anyway my point is that I think we should at least add a note to any -ns- and -nts- rhyme page to also look on the other page. The case for -nz- and -ndz- is almost as compelling. — Hippietrail 10:06, 18 May 2004 (UTC)

I agree. I'll add a note to that effect. — Paul G 10:14, 18 May 2004 (UTC)

  1. Bundt cakes are quite popular in the US (try googling). The term "Bundt" is not generally used on its own, but would certainly make a rhyme, either whimsically inverted or enjambed:
    ... front/... the cake was Bundt
    ... the Bundt/cake . . . . front/....
  2. Where I come from "Nestles" is pronounced as in the entry you removed. Please check non-British usage before summarily deleting "incorrect" pronunciations.
  3. Nestles is a decent choice for a chocolate Bundt cake.

-dmh 16:02, 26 May 2004 (UTC)

Thanks, dmh. I was not aware of this. As Muke has pointed out on the /i:z/ talk page, Nestle's is pronounced as you say, but has not been restored because it is stressed on the first syllable. — Paul G 16:07, 26 May 2004 (UTC)
Thanks for the reply. I was pretty sure that the Nestle's would not rhyme because of the stress (though it would rhyme with "yes, please" depending on what you consider a rhyme). I was more concerned that the American pronunciation be duly noted. -dmh 16:43, 28 May 2004 (UTC)
Well, it's assonant with "yes, please", but a rhyme, as defined, has to match exactly from the stressed vowel onwards. That's the definition that I'm going by. -- Paul G 14:29, 30 May 2004 (UTC)


Hai Paul,
I see that you reverted a lot of messages from palindrome. One of them is the interwiki link to the nl:wiktionary. I am working towards a system where automatic translation will work within some parameters. One of the things is that words that spelled exactly the same should have a link.

I have read that you are unreservedly against the use of messages. Please reconsider, and read the arguments for the use of these messages. It will help build a big amount of translated words quicly in other wiktionaries. The one thing that really needs manual attention is the translation of a definition. It may mean that more precise definitions will be needed in order to translate correctly, BUT these are needed anyway.

My first aim is to manually do the languages using en:wiktionary info for the nl:WikiWoordenboek. When this is done I will know how feasible it is. GerardM 19:04, 26 May 2004 (UTC)

Hi Gerard,
I am concerned about the use of messages for the headers and language names, for the reasons that I and others have pointed out. In my haste to remove these messages, I also removed your link to WikiWoordenboek. Sorry about that. Please go ahead and restore it.
Please note one other change that I made: non-English entries have only English translations. The French entry for "palindrome" is translated only into English. This decision has been discussed and agreed in order to help preserve Wiktionary's self-consistency.
Thanks for contributing to Wiktionary - please continue to do.
Regards — Paul G 08:35, 27 May 2004 (UTC)

The concerns you have are noted. That is, I will see how I can solve issues. It is too early to come to a conclusion as this is not an en:wiktionary only thing and it has not cristalised enough. The use of interwikis is important as it will help the new wiktionaries find translations.
The quality of the translations is often not good. The German nouns have a gender and a capital. These are often missing. By putting all translations in one heap with (1) and (5) etc. It is often not clear what to use for (4) when it is missing in a language.
Having translations only with the English word is the proper thing to do. However, I think it should be stated that a word is English like we are starting to do on nl:wikitionary. The local word should always go first.
One thing I have to say, it is one thing to have concerns and another to revert them all back. The point is that you could leave a few to allow for experimentation and comment. By removing them all, it gives the impression that the en:wiktionary way is the only way and that the "not invented here" principle applies. I expect that you do not mean it that way.
When translations are picked up from en:wiktionary, it becomes vital for the other wiktionaries to link to that word. This will help find new translations and changes to translations as they appear.
Thanks, GerardM 06:34, 28 May 2004 (UTC)
Hi Gerard,
I'm glad to hear that you are seeing what can be done to make your system avoid the problems that have been raised. If it can be made to work without disruption and to the benefit of Wiktionary, then it will be a good thing. I hope this can be achieved.
No, as you say, I do not mean that the en:wiktionary way is the only way and anything else must be eliminated. When I see a page that diverges from what is emerging as the standard model, I tend to edit it. I did this to your pages before I came across the discussion about messages.
I agree that it will be useful to translations to disseminate themselves automatically across Wiktionaries in different languages. This will save a great deal of work. — Paul G 08:23, 28 May 2004 (UTC)

Hi Paul. Just noticed you rearrange the pronunciation section on Golden eagle. Note that I'm using this new system for a couple of reasons:

  1. When a word has various pronunciations, all transcriptions can go on one line
  2. The homophone and rhyme sections can unambiguously go under one pronunciation
  3. What I used to call "AHD" is subtly different from what the American Heritage Dictionary uses but at the time I didn't know what else to call it and assumed all American dictionaries used the same system. They don't but this is very much typical of what they do use but since its our own system doesn't have a name - but most people familiar with that style of dictionary will understand these pronunciations

Hippietrail 10:56, 30 May 2004 (UTC)

Hi Hippietrail,
That makes sense. I don't understand your second point though. Can you explain?
Well here's an example:
It makes it easy to see which rhymes and homophones relate to which pronunciations, regardless which of the pronunciation schemes you are able to read/understand
It's also more compact (:
I suppose that, if this newer format becomes standard, it can be extended to all entries using a bot. I wouldn't want to be involved in editing all the existing entries :) — Paul G 11:04, 30 May 2004 (UTC)
I just fix them as I come across them. Should be bottable in a lot of cases. By the way - where do I learn about wikibots? I'm a programmer - might be able to do something useful there... — Hippietrail 11:19, 30 May 2004 (UTC)
Ah, I see now. That is tidier.
I don't know where you would find out about this - presumably from whoever programs Wiktionary. Maybe ask in the Beer parlour, or check out Wikipedia. I think they have active bots on there. -- Paul G 14:31, 30 May 2004 (UTC)

Hi Paul. Saw your note in about "there exists" - if you can describe what that symbol looks like I'll try to find it. — Hippietrail 12:26, 4 Jun 2004 (UTC)

Got it, thanks :) Someone had already created the page for the symbol. I couldn't find it (nor ∀) among the Unicode characters from 128 to 999 though. — Paul G 13:54, 4 Jun 2004 (UTC)
No problem. Remember, Google is your friend. I found it be searching ["there exists" unicode] — you should be able to find all the upside-down or backward letters you need (-: — Hippietrail 16:19, 4 Jun 2004 (UTC)

Stress in rhymes[edit]

Hi again. Just wanted to say that I don't think the stress marks are necessary in the rhymes. They'll only confuse people - especially those wanting to make new rhyme pages. Since by definition the rhymes begin with the stressed syllable anyway, the stress will always be in the same position with each and every one. Thus really nullifying any need to add it. I put it in a couple early on weeks ago and then realized it wasn't the best idea.

By the way, with the non-IPA pronunciation, the plain old apostrophe marks the primary stress. I've been using the straight double quoute to mark the secondary stress just because I couldn't find any better two Unicode characters which looked the same but differed in weight.

Now if and when we get deeper into the rhyming dictionary, and try to cope with more complex types of rhymes involving the secondary stresses, we may need to mark stresses in those. But before we do that we really should invest some time seeing what several well-known print rhyming dictionaries have come up with already. — Hippietrail 09:45, 8 Jun 2004 (UTC)

Sure, not putting in the stress marks makes sense, as you say. I did think about this this morning - good to see that you've had the same thought. It will save some effort too. Thanks for clarifying this for me.
I have a rhyming dictionary at home (Penguin; I have not been referring to it yet - all my rhymes have come from applying a list of common word beginnings to each page). They do not pay any attention to secondary stress. Their system is based on the final syllable, irrespective of stress (hence there is a very long section containing words ending in /@/). Within each section there are subsections containing groups of rhymes with a particular ending further subdivided by number of syllables, as we have here. However some of these disregard stress, especially when words have no true rhymes (based on pronunciation and stress) so, for example, "about" and "turnout" would be in the same section.
I'm not sure subdividing on secondary stress will be necessary, but one thing that probably ought to be included is an "others" section for words that have the final syllable but do not have any rhymes of their own. So, for example, "orange" would appear on the page for /-IndZ/ along with "hinge" and "swinge" rather than as an "orphan" on its own page. — Paul G 10:46, 8 Jun 2004 (UTC)
But of course the problem then is that "orange" doesn't actually rhyme with "hinge" - so who would this be useful to? Even near-rhymes don't work in this way as far as I know. They would pay most attention to the stressed vowel but relax the constraints on the following consonants and short unstressed vowels. It's more likely to near-rhyme "orange" and "porridge" IMHO than with "hinge". But hey - I'm not a poet (-: — Hippietrail 11:04, 8 Jun 2004 (UTC)
True. I don't want to take Wiktionary down the route of "partial" rhymes that don't match stress or are only assonant (as "orange" and "porridge" - this sort of "rhyme" is very popular among, dare I say, lazy contemporary song-writers). Perhaps we should leave things as they are, but then the link that you have added from "monster" remains dead for ever. (There are no rhymes for "monster" as far as I can determine.) — Paul G 11:12, 8 Jun 2004 (UTC)
That's fine. This is probably the case in print dictionaries too and it makes it clear to people looking for rhymes that we also don't know of any rather than leaving the issue open. And if somebody does find an obscure one - there is somewhere for them to add it. C'est la vie... — Hippietrail 11:22, 8 Jun 2004 (UTC)

The phrase "not comparable"[edit]

Hi Paul. I've been thinking about this for a while and I think this phrase isn't right. It makes it sound like something can't be compared at all, which is a semantic function quite distint from whether an adjective permits the formation of comparative and superlative forms. "uniqueness" isn't comparable semantically yet the word "unique" does have admittedly inane yet very common comparative and superlative forms "more unique" and "most unique". And this is at the extreme end of the scale.

I much prefer the phrase "no comparative or superlative forms". I assume that you're preferring a phrase which is more comprehensible to "regular people" which is a concern, but a dictionary has to be precise too and I think "not comparable" is far too imprecise. — Hippietrail 11:17, 25 Jun 2004 (UTC)

OK, this makes sense. However, "more x" and "most x" are comparatives and superlatives, so "no comparative or superlative forms" would also apply only to something that is not comparable at all (such as the adjective "either"). I think this is what you are suggesting. If so, this sounds fine to me. — Paul G 12:15, 25 Jun 2004 (UTC)

Hi Paul,

Yes there is a ĥ in esperanto and ĥoro shouldn't be capitalised. I see Muke already took care of it.



Great, thank you for that. — Paul G 08:46, 2 Jul 2004 (UTC)

Hollywood Jam, Tiny Toon Adventures, and probably some other stuff[edit]

I left a message on your Wikipedia talk page, but judging by your contributions, it might be a while before you check over there. The short of it is that the person who added Hollywood Jam and that Tiny Toons page is a vandal who has been repeatedly warned and repeatedly banned on en.wikipedia for posting complete and utter fiction. -- w:User:Cyrius

Hi Cyrius,
Thanks for clarifying that. I'm afraid I took them in good faith.
I have deleted the pages from Wiktionary. I take it you have deleted the Wikipedia pages too.
Paul G 15:06, 14 Jul 2004 (UTC)

Hi, Paul. I am the contributor who added several square dance terms, including Allemande Left and Dos a Dos. I am a registered and licensed square dance caller. Please do not change these articles unless you are familiar with square dancing. The changes you made to capitalization and the "à" are not correct--they are not the way these terms are used in calling in English. "Dos a Dos" is a square dance move which comes FROM a French phrase, but it is not the French phrase. Moves are generally written like titles, so it should be "Allemande Left" and "Ladies Chain", not "allemande left" and "ladies chain". Due to its long history, "Dos a Dos" is indeed spelled many different ways--and there's a related call "Do-Si-Do" which is not the same and other related calls also.

It took me a while to get these pages back in order again.

So--please don't make changes unless you are familiar with square dancing. Thanks. RSvK 07:00, 18 Jul 2004 (UTC)

Hi RSvK,
You are right, I am not familiar with square dancing. However, I made my changes based on evidence from another dictionary (Chambers, 1998 edition), which spells this entry "dos-à-dos". I've now checked the OED (1989 edition) and this gives "do-se-do" and "do-si-do" as the spellings, but not "Dos a Dos" (capitalised, without an accent or hyphens).
I know nothing about "Allemande Left", etc, so cannot comment on these. I did not believe that these were capitalised, but your experience shows that they are, so I defer to you here. I apologise for making unfounded assumptions.
In any case, there is room for all the variant spellings of "do-si-do", as we have both commented on in the entry.
Paul G 07:21, 18 Jul 2004 (UTC)
I know this isn't directly on-topic but I think this is a good example of what categories can be usefully used for. — Hippietrail 07:52, 18 Jul 2004 (UTC)
There are many variations on the name "Dos a Dos", but in twelve years of square dancing, I've never seen it spelled with the accent mark. I realize this is the way the original French phrase is spelled, but nobody uses the accent mark in square dancing. Non-French speakers changed it sometimes to "Do-Si-Do", but that name eventually came to be applied to another related move with a different definition. RSvK 19:34, 18 Jul 2004 (UTC)


First of all, the fruit categories were not created by me; I simply arranged them into a higher category after they were created. Secondly, I see no harm in using the current format, and I think it reads more naturally than your suggestion. -- LGagnon

Hi Paul. Just on your change to Bilgewater, how is it possible for a word derived from another to not be related to it? Isn't derivation a relationship? And by derived do you mean etymologically or or morphemically? I've had a problem with the "Derived" and "Related" headings for a long time, believing that they are more than a little bit confusing. — Hippietrail 14:43, 20 Jul 2004 (UTC)

Fair point. I've always taken this to mean morphologically related rather than etymologically. What is your interpretation? I'll return it as "derived". — Paul G 14:49, 20 Jul 2004 (UTC)
I've always found it ambiguous and sometimes haven't been able to decide which term is right. I brought the matter up on the Beer parlour or perhaps in a talk page some time ago and I got the impression people didn't understand the difference. In this case, I think the relationship is clearly etymological since the change wasn't dealing with English derivational morphemes but replacing one component of a compound word. This makes me surer that the terms we're using for the headings aren't clear enough for other people also. — Hippietrail 14:56, 20 Jul 2004 (UTC)

Yelling at foreigners[edit]

Paul, you commented on mathematics: "please do not add translations before definitions". Well, that is the most patronizing arrogant statement anyone has made here so far. So, we must do the work of the native English speakers just so we can add a translation? English is not my language, I should not be expected to do any definitions. Red Prince 16:04, 27 Jul 2004 (UTC)

Red Prince,
I'm sorry you saw it as patronising and arrogant - I really did not mean that way.
This was not an attack directed at you. I understand that English is not your first language, and do not expect you to do the work of English speakers. However, if translations are added to an entry before definitions, and then several definitions are added, it is often difficult to know which translations these definitions correspond to. I hope you understand that this can cause problems and make the translations useless.
Please, when you create new entries and add translations, add just a few words so that it is clear what the translations are translating. You don't have to write a perfect definition - an English speaker can do this later on. Thank you. — Paul G 16:36, 27 Jul 2004 (UTC)

Fictional characters[edit]

Do we really need entries for fictional characters? I think Wikipedia handles this well enough. I don't think these entries fit the purpose of a dictionary entry. -- [[User:LGagnon|LGagnon]] 15:08, 13 Aug 2004 (UTC)

They are mainly there for the purposes of providing translations. Definitions are minimal and cross-reference Wikipedia. See the discussion of "Fat & Skinny" on the "Requests for deletion" page. — Paul G 08:37, 16 Aug 2004 (UTC)

Links to Categories[edit]

Paul, thanks for your useful suggestions regarding the proper way to place lists in the Wiktionary namespace and the use of categories. I agree that listing the contractions as members of a category is the most useful way to link them together. However, I think that the definition for contraction should display a link to that category page, and I was wondering the best way to do that. Adding a link [[Category:English_contractions]] to the bottom of the contraction page is a bit of a perversion, since it would then list the word "contraction" on the list of contractions. I accomplished adding the link to the category page by using an external link []. This seems to work, but I was wondering if there's another way to accomplish this, since I'd like to avoid using external links when it's truly a Wiki link. Thanks. —Brim 00:22, 18 Sep 2004 (UTC)

Nevermind, I figured out how to make the link. —Brim 02:49, 18 Sep 2004 (UTC)


Re: User talk:Jeandré#Copyright?. Is using out of bounds for checking facts, e.g. that fumarole comes most recently from the Italian fumarola? This seems to me like a fact, and not something that can be copyrighted.

Thanks for moving fumarolic, I didn't realize that the adjective list in an article is for something spelled the same - which now seems obvious :). — Jeandré, 2004-10-08t20:23z

Hi Jeandré,
Yes, checking facts is fine. I would say that it is probably not on though to copy an etymology rather than researching it oneself, because that would be copying another's work. The same applies to translations - if you have a look at the pages for any of the chemical elements you will see that there are extensive lists of translations, and these have been obtained with permission from other sites. Although these are facts, copying them without permission would have been a breach of copyright as the owner of the site from which they were copied clearly put in a lot of work to find the translations.
Yes, there is a separate page for each headword. Headwords that are spelled the same but have different meanings, parts of speech or etymologies (homographs) all go on the same page.
Have fun — Paul G 17:10, 10 Oct 2004 (UTC)

Image Copyright[edit]

Hi Paul, Thanks for the copyright info. I called my wife and made sure she was OK with publishing the image, then updated the image with that info. She got a good laugh out of it.  :) Armaced 17:44, 19 Oct 2004 (UTC)


Hi Paul: I see you moved survive from the definition line of outlive to the synonyms section. In this case I have no problem with this, as outlive is fairly simple in its meaning. However, in general I think a string of definitions - which may include, one-word definitions, help convey the conoations of a word, and I wouldn't like all one-word definitions shuffled off to the Synonyms section. For example (and unfortunately it is far from a good one!) I'm currently adding beweep and my first attempt at a definition is to weep over; to deplore, lament ... I think that the three definitions strung together give a fuller sense of the word. What do you think? — DavidL 16:16, 21 Oct 2004

Yes, I agree, and where the single-word definitions help define the word, I don't move them to synonyms. Websters is fond of these "multiple" definitions. However, in some cases, as you say, the single-word ones don't add anything to the longer definition, in my opinion, and so I think those are better placed in the synonyms section. — Paul G 16:41, 21 Oct 2004 (UTC)
Good to know we're on the same page (as people keep saying around the office). I've been thinking more about synonyms and antonyms. Like translations and quotations, they should presumably have subheadings corresponding to each of the various meanings. If we start including 'looser' synonyms (as Websters often seems to do) then we are heading into thesaurus territory (which leads me to another of my background thoughts about uses for Categories). — DavidL 09:44, 22 Oct 2004
There has been talk somewhere of having a separate "Wikithesaurus" and farming all the synonyms and antonyms out to there. This would make sense as there a word X that has n synonyms rarely has all of its synonyms listed all n of these pages, especially when n is larger than 2 or 3.
See "hot" for the approach I advocate for synonyms and antonyms. It's similar to the approach taken for translations to ensure that they match up with the correct definition. — Paul G 10:13, 22 Oct 2004 (UTC)

-uːli rhymes[edit]

Hi Paul: I've added a comment to [[Talk:Rhymes:English:-uːli]] regarding which I'd like your opinion ... basically the question is: should -uːli and -juːli be different pages? — DavidL 14:51, 22 Oct 2004 (UTC)

Actually, I have been taking the phobias and philias from Wikipedia (-phobia and -philia have long lists of both, and even then, I have modified them somewhat). The other words I added (those beginning with D and several other letters, are from a public domain Webster's dictionary found at Project Gutenberg (see here--D words can be found at #662 going down the left-hand column). In fact, all the volumes of that dictionary are public domain, as verified by PG, which does quite a thorough job of ensuring they are not violating copyright. I have then pruned the definitions down, often removing quotes, etc. There has been no copyright violation. In fact, I recommend others use that as a source for new entries. Danny 11:25, 1 Nov 2004 (UTC)

Thanks for confirming this, Danny. I hope you understand that as a sysop I have to watch out for these things.
I am surprised though that many of these entries are the same as's - perhaps they have been taking them from Gutenberg. If so, it seems a bit off if they then claim copyright for them. — Paul G 11:46, 1 Nov 2004 (UTC)
No problem. As it is a public domain edition of Webster, I can see how the more modern editions simply copied old material, instead of "reinventing the wheel." Danny 11:51, 1 Nov 2004 (UTC)


Sorry, but there's no such verb. Veuillez is the irregular imperative of vouloir. Eclecticology 10:44, 9 Nov 2004 (UTC)

OK, thanks for that. I misremembered it. I'll move the content to "veuillez". — Paul G 11:00, 9 Nov 2004 (UTC)

Combining double macrons and breves[edit]

Hi Paul. Here's what you are looking for:


I think I started using them first but it was he who pointed out that they correctly should be placed between the two letters, some Microsoft rendering components had/have a bug which made these work if you put them after both characters. Then again they almost never work in current fonts etc yet anyway, but they will soon we hope (-: — Hippietrail 14:47, 9 Nov 2004 (UTC)

color, colour[edit]

Please see talk:color for why I made the changes. As far as translations for color, I don't care either way, but I think having a color colour page makes sense and is working out well. We've been having discussion, and until such time as you have a better idea, I think we should use user:dmh's plan. I don't see how the current situation of having 'seperate but equal' color and colour pages is up to 'policy' either.


Hi Paul: you deleted an entry on a definition I made joining up information from different resources (which I don't believe is a copyright violation) on the word "patriarch". But at the same time, you edited an entry of another word I added "Ethnical", which is a literal copy of the definition found in [ The free dictionary]. So, what's your point?


Hi Mariano. The content of is also copyright (there is a copyright notice at the bottom of the page). Wiktionary is not allowed to carry copyright material, and I'm afraid anything found to be so has to be deleted. Combining material from various copyright sources is also a violation of copyright. Sorry about that - that's the way we have to work here.
The entry for "ethnical" is much the same as any dictionary or lexicographer would define it, so it is harder to see this a copyright violation. — Paul G 09:58, 16 Nov 2004 (UTC)

Congratulazioni per fare la cinquanta-millesima entrata! -dmh 14:55, 23 Nov 2004 (UTC)

Grazie - non me ne sono reso conto fin quando ho guardato la pagina principale! — Paul G 14:57, 23 Nov 2004 (UTC)
Prego - Io stavo pensando di una parola speziale per la cinquanta-millesima, ma serà megliore così -dmh 15:53, 23 Nov 2004 (UTC)


Hi Paul,

Well, many other Wiktionary have adopted a policy to use templates and to wikify language names, which I find good. Yann 17:46, 25 Nov 2004 (UTC)

Probably should of put my response on the issue here, but its at User_talk:Yann. --Eean 23:59, 25 Nov 2004 (UTC)

Re: Translingual homophones[edit]

Sorry, I missed the message you put on my userpage back in May (see User talk:Mxn#Translingual homophones). The Vietnamese word "sinh" actually is pronounced identically to the English word "sing." And that's why I listed it as a homophone. To my knowledge, there is no Vietnamese word "sing." (-nh at the end of the word makes the /ng/ sound in Vietnamese. – [[User:Mxn|Minh Nguyễn (talk, blog)]] 03:10, 26 Nov 2004 (UTC)

See User talk:Mxn#Translingual homophones.

Yes, my name is pronounced like "ming." (The Vietnamese alphabet is based on Portuguese of the 16th and 17th centuries.) I rarely add translingual homophones – only when the pronunciations are identical and when it'll help users out. (If it'll reassure you: I don't plan to make up my own words in English just to add to the list. That's the job of a phrasebook. :)

As far as I know, there are only a few other wikt: users who know Vietnamese. And I'm the only real contributor to wikt:vi:, though I hope that'll change soon. – [[User:Mxn|Minh Nguyễn (talk, blog)]] 04:46, 30 Nov 2004 (UTC)


I gather both are valid. I'll move and redirect if you think so. -- EmperorBMA|話す 06:59, 1 Dec 2004 (UTC)


I went through black's history seeing who had added white person as an antonym, expecting it to be an anonymous user... and it was you?!? [1] --Eean 05:21, 3 Dec 2004 (UTC)

If it was, and you think this is incorrect, inappropriate or POV, by all means change it. "Non-white" is often used a synonym for "black", and so "white" is an antonym of "black", isn't it? It's not meant to be an offensive contribution - merely reflecting usage. — Paul G 09:54, 3 Dec 2004 (UTC)
Black is an antonym of white in many uses, race not one of them, I thought that would be obvious though I guess not. I was hoping it was something like this, which is why I noted it here, I didn't want to go thinking you were some racist. --Eean 22:34, 3 Dec 2004 (UTC)
This looks much like woman having the antonym man. Both words have a hyponym that is an antonym to the other's. --Blade Hirato 11:55, 3 Dec 2004 (UTC)

So where is the consensus on WikiSaurus ?[edit]

Back in November you wrote "Commendable as the Wikisaurus idea is, could you hold off on adding entries until it has been discussed in the beer parlour? We usually discuss major changes like this one before going ahead, to make sure we get some kind of consensus. Thanks. — Paul G 14:25, 19 Nov 2004 (UTC) (Wiktionary sysop)"

But since then, there has been very little discussion, so I've decided to carry on building on the idea, just to see, for me, how well it might work. One or two people have done a little bit to add to it. But, overall, Wiktionary seems to be very, very quiet at the moment, with a very small number of active constributors, and little to no discussion of the ideas I'm throwing in.

But, how do I get sysops to answer requests like - can we make the WikiSaurus: namespace part of the search, so that if people GO or SEARCH a word, they get the links to any WikiSaurus entries with that word in ??

By all means, I look forward to some constructive discussion of the idea, and a few more peole actively trying the idea out, to see if it works for them too, or finding where the problems may lie. By the way, my concentrating on words like fuck, sex, tits, dick etc is a simple marketing ploy. These are the kinds of words most looked up in dictionaries! For myself, you will notice that when putting in words like lay, I end up modifying the meaning of lay which is about laying bricks. When the word tramp goes in, I end up adding to the defintion of tramp meaning to walk long distances. One of the beauties of a Thesaurus is it leads you on to other words. So, how do we get some real action on getting moving with a Thesuarus of some sort ?--Richardb 11:09, 12 Dec 2004 (UTC)

Hi Richard,
I suggest you revive the discussion in the beer parlour, either in the original thread or by starting a new one. Make some noise there so that it gets people's attention. I think it's an important thing to have, so let's see what we can do to get it off the ground. I will support you in this, although I am not on here as often as I would like so you might not see me around much.
As for changing the way the software does searches, this is down to whoever programs the system rather than the sysops - I don't know who this is. Some of the other sysops might be able to point you to the person to speak to about this.
I like your ploy, by the way. And there was I thinking you just had a one-track mind ;) — Paul G 09:51, 13 Dec 2004 (UTC)


Yes, an anonymous user was going through and adding stuff from AHD as I said in the edit summaries. Last month before I started contributing regularly I pointed out a user in RFD that had contributed nothing but copyright violations. But a few days went by, nothing was done, and in fact one of the pages was re-formatted and improved upon (good example of how copyright violations can be pretty damaging). So I removed the offending content. I guess we need a better protocol.

Also, people should be more aware. Obviously if its from the OED thats kind of tricky (though in that case the OED holocaust definition is pasted all over the web) but if an anonymous user comes in and puts several well-written and often poorly-formated definitions in a matter of minutes, its a case of suspicion and should be googled. Can't get more obvious sometimes. Well, anytime a user your not familiar with puts up a good new word it should be googled probably. I then check with to make sure it isn't public domain.

It would be nice if one of the sysops changed the "You are also promising us that you wrote this yourself..." message at the bottom to be more to the point as I suggested in the beer parlor.--Eean 17:30, 16 Dec 2004 (UTC)

Project to get basic words defined[edit]

User:Richardb/Project - Basic English Word Cleanup.

Active Participants[edit]

The following people have contributed to the project so far. Can you help too ?

  • dmh- enthusiastically running with it
  • Eclecticology - This seems like a useful idea.

I've not publicised this in the Beer Parlour because I don't want just anyone to test out the idea, only the currently active players--Richardb 11:39, 18 Dec 2004 (UTC)

Rain cats and dogs[edit]

What exactly is the difference between an etymology and a history? I'm refering to [2]. --Eean 19:31, 24 Dec 2004 (UTC)

Hi Eean. An etymology is the tracing of the origins of a word or phrase, and gives the history of where the word or phrase came from. I don't think we should be using the term "history" at all because "etymology" is the appropriate term to use.
I commented out "from 'rain dogs and cats'" because it does not provide the origin - it might do if "rain dogs and cats" existed as an entry and had an etymology of its own. I think it would be better if someone knowledgeable could research the origins of this term and insert that as its etymology. — Paul G 09:49, 31 Dec 2004 (UTC)


Buona serra Paul. You might like to use an uppercase letter to begin each WikiSaurus|Xxx - but it's up to you. SemperBlotto 18:04, 16 Jan 2005 (UTC)

Hi SemperBlotto (is that Latin for "always drunk"?) - thanks for the suggestion. It looks like it is a necessity rather than an option - the entries I have just added have come out separately from those with an upper case initial letter. I'll modify them and update the template accordingly. — Paul G 18:17, 16 Jan 2005 (UTC)
Well, semper (like it-sempre) means always, but blotto should be in your WikiSaurus under drunk. By the way, I'm adding some Italian words myself - working on some templates for verb conjugations at the moment. See Ritornare for example. While I think of it, perhaps you could show the difference between that and Tornare which seems to be the one normally used. Cheers (Jeff) SemperBlotto 18:35, 16 Jan 2005 (UTC)
On second thoughts, maybe all of these should begin with a lower-case letter, given that that is how they are displayed. It would mean a little bit of work to change them all, of course, but better to do this now, if at all, before the list gets too long. What do you think? — Paul G 18:41, 16 Jan 2005 (UTC)
I'm not sure of the difference between "tornare" and "ritornare". I usually use "tornare" ("sono tornato a casa" - I went home). Thanks for adding the Italian content, by the way. It is good to see another contributor of Italian on here other than myself (so I don't feel like it is all my responsibility). — Paul G 18:41, 16 Jan 2005 (UTC)

Italian Translations[edit]

Paul, I use Collins Concise as a guide, and try to use my own wording where possible. I shall try harder in future, but will be translating zucchero as sugar as I can't think of calling it anything else. I shall revisit the Z-words and see what I can do. SemperBlotto 22:22, 16 Jan 2005 (UTC)

OK Paul. I also have a Zingarelli Minore monolingual dictionary. I shall consult that as well, and, when in doubt, try to make my own translation from its Italian descriptions. SemperBlotto 10:05, 17 Jan 2005 (UTC)

Yes, you are right. Using the Zingarelli, I have just edited zattera, which used to say just raft and created Zattere from personal knowledge. SemperBlotto

"Square" characters in your Ryhme articles[edit]

Hello Paul,

when I look at your various rhyme pages, there are very many "square" characters where some sort of special character should be. Do you know what I have to do to my browser in order to see them properly? I use MS Internet Explorer under Windows 98. SemperBlotto 15:54, 18 Jan 2005 (UTC)

Hi SB (what is your real name?),
I had the same problem with IE in Windows 98. I couldn't find how to change this (although there might be a way to do it). What worked for me in the end was to use a different browser (Firefox, which is better than IE and is much, much more secure - I would recommend you change to this anyway if only to protect your machine from all the nasties that get through the loopholes in IE. See the Firefox homepage.) — Paul G 16:14, 18 Jan 2005 (UTC)
Yes, I thought that you might say that. I shall try to get round to trying it on my wife's laptop - with Windows 2000.

And yes, sorry for the silly name. You will find my real name (and a picture) over on Wikipedia.

Yes, the Gentium font works (but I don't like the look of it, so won't use it all the time). I have an old version of MS-Office without Ariel Unicode, and MS have removed it from their download site. I won't go to any more trouble as I don't understand IPA anyway !! SemperBlotto 17:37, 25 Jan 2005 (UTC)

Italian conjugation templates[edit]

I found a prototype on Italian wiktionary and added the choice of Avere / Essere to it.

I have since cloned it for -ere -ire and a few standard mini-irregularities, and will have a go at reflexives some time. For irregular verbs (See andare) I copy the body of the closest fit template into each article and edit there.

I have put basic documentation on Index:Italian

Cheers Jeff SemperBlotto 12:22, 24 Jan 2005 (UTC)



No problem. ARTFL listed it as an alternate spelling; I had no idea it was a US/UK variation (I wouldn't think it is; just because it is a spelling difference, doesn't mean it belongs in the US/UK flamewar.) Also, I thought the color/colour issue is still up in the air...if I had know this was involved I would not have created the article. As it is, I think I may take these off my watchlist. --Connel MacKenzie 18:44, 25 Jan 2005 (UTC)

  1. PaulG, I guess my problem with the whole thing is that just because crenellate is the only British spelling, does not cause the US spelling of crenellate to be invalid; it just implies that crenelate is preferred in the US (which I have no way of checking.)
  2. ARTFL I link to when editing entries using {{artfl}} during preview (+ open in new tab) then remove the template once the separate windows/tabs are open, before saving. ARTFL I *think* is a US university project, making Webster 1913 available online, unencumbered.
  3. As for "Variant" vs. "Alternate", I'm just going off what I think is in Wiktionary:Entry_layout_explained. Unless it's changed since I last looked (which was fairly recently.) --Connel MacKenzie 19:09, 25 Jan 2005 (UTC)
Gaaaah! You changed it January 8th! {sigh} Perhaps alternate has a different meaning "across the pond" as well. My oh my. If I ever get bored, I'll look that discussion up. (It WAS discussed, right?) --Connel MacKenzie 19:18, 25 Jan 2005 (UTC)
So if ARTFL is based on Webster 1913, it does indeed have American content.
Which way are you going across the pond? I think "alternate" means both "every second one" and "different but equivalent" in the US, whereas it is only used in the latter sense in the UK.
Yes, I made that change. I don't remember it being discussed. I think it is one of those things that just came about because a couple of people started doing it, maybe after a similar discussion to the one we are having now. — Paul G 10:01, 26 Jan 2005 (UTC)
I'm in the US. As someone replied on my talk page, variant is apparently more POV than alternate. --Connel MacKenzie 14:04, 26 Jan 2005 (UTC)

Thanks for the laugh. Thanks for the insight, and rational discussion! --Connel MacKenzie 17:19, 26 Jan 2005 (UTC)

So, were you going to change it back to alternate in Wiktionary:Entry layout explained? --Connel MacKenzie 06:25, 30 Jan 2005 (UTC)

Thanks for the reminder. I've changed it to "alternative", which I am assuming is universally understandable. I have also added "Alternative forms" as an extra header, which is midway between alternative spellings and synonyms. This is especially useful for phrases, where there might be small variations in phrasing that are not changes of spelling and don't make the phrase different enough to count as a synonym (such as those phrasal verbs ending in "around" where "about" may be used instead in UK English). — Paul G 16:17, 30 Jan 2005 (UTC)

Webster 1913 abbreviations on {{artfl}}[edit]

Hi Connel.

Does Webster use the abbreviation "OHG." or "OHG" for Old High German? It seems a bit strange if they only put a point after the G. I would have thought it would be either "O.H.G." or "OHG" but not "OHG." — Paul G 10:07, 28 Jan 2005 (UTC)

Paul, the abbreviations I've seen are all "OHG." not "OHG". Strange. I'm about to redirect OHG to OHG. for a little consistency. --Connel MacKenzie 10:10, 28 Jan 2005 (UTC)
Thanks for letting me know. I didn't think you would have made that sort of mistake, so I am surprised at Webster. Maybe it's something they corrected in the later editions. Redirecting from the "correct" abbreviations to Webster's ones makes sense. — Paul G 10:17, 28 Jan 2005 (UTC)
I believe the Webster 1913 dictionary was *very* concerned about pages and ink. The type-space for "O.H.G." even with kearning is considerably more than "OHG.". As long as they were consistent, I don't think it mattered much.
Someone had started creating a series of templates for abbreviations used in Webster 1913, and I've been trying to use them. But they are wrong. Anglo Saxon is the same as Old English, BUT the use of this person's templates commingle the two. Since the scheme that person was using is too hard to remember, I'm now creating new templates, that match the Webster abbreviations EXACTLY. No more worrying about which is which, I hope. --Connel MacKenzie 13:13, 28 Jan 2005 (UTC)


Hi Paul,

I noticed you changed the entry for Hz. Does something being a scientific symbol preclude it from being an abbreviation? In this case, it seems to be both. Also, you seem to have (indavertantly?) removed the descriptive text about what the term actually means, differentiating it from, say RPM.

Do you think perhaps symbol should/could be an additional sub-category of types of abbreviations? Or would a category:symbols make more sense as a stand alone category? Or is it adviseable to move this conversation to the beer parlor? --Connel MacKenzie 21:59, 31 Jan 2005 (UTC)

This is certainly a moot point, and I was fairly sure you would comment on it.
I think that Hz, m, V and all the other symbols for the SI units are just that, rather than abbreviations, because must never be written with points (unlike, say, "in." for "inches"). Similarly, C, N, He, etc, are symbols for chemical elements, and not abbreviations (this is clearly the case if you consider Au, Ag, Sn and others derived from Latin words).
We could certainly have a symbols category - there's no harm in that, and there is certainly a clearer distinction between symbols and abbreviations than there is between acronyms, initialisms and other forms of abbreviation. If you think this could do with being considered by everybody, by all means move this conversation to the beer parlour. — Paul G 09:37, 1 Feb 2005 (UTC)
I think the Beer Parlor/Tea room are for issues that are debated. You explained the distinction so clearly that I honestly can't imagine any further discussion needed. I'll just move what I can of your explanation to the relevant category pages ("be bold") then start adding some in. I have not made it very far with abbreviations, acronyms, or initialisms as of yet; the 50 states were uncategorized to begin with. Actually, now (after tossing in a few scientific symbols into the symbols category) might be a really good time to ask for opinions on the overall concept... Unless of course, you tell me before then of something ELSE that I've overlooked. --Connel MacKenzie 11:37, 1 Feb 2005 (UTC)

Rhymes with brighten etc[edit]

Would you add quieten here? SemperBlotto 11:52, 1 Feb 2005 (UTC)

No - this has an extra syllable (qui-uh-tuhn). Compare the sounds of the words "bright" and "quiet" - you'll see that they are different. — Paul G 12:07, 1 Feb 2005 (UTC)

Place Names in England[edit]

Well, I just did the historic counties for a start. I hadn't seen that list, but I have added it to my "turn red links blue" task list. I'm not sure about Avon though - a bit Thatcherite for me (a socialist Bristolian). SemperBlotto 19:56, 1 Feb 2005 (UTC)


Thanks for getting on board with a lot of entries in WikiSaurus. As a more expert Wiktionarian than I, I would also like your thoughts on whether this growing example is the right way to go, has value, for now at least. What, if anything, can be done to improve the format, before we get to many to bring up to scratch ?--Richardb 22:40, 4 Feb 2005 (UTC)

Hi Richard, thanks for asking me for my thoughts.
I think first of all it is important to get some sort of agreement for the project from other contributors. The discussion in the beer parlour (which I think ended up being moved to a separate area) seemed to show that there was a fair amount of opposition. I think before WikiSaurus becomes more fully-fledged, there needs to be support for it, in whatever form becomes agreed upon. At the moment, of course, it just a handful of pages, so any changes to the structure or format would not be too arduous to put into place.
Assuming that it gets the go-ahead, my thoughts, in no particular order, on the format are:
  • Have different sections for different parts of speech
  • Within each of these, have a different section for each sense of the word that has synonyms
  • Separate (as I have been doing) standard, technical, slang and taboo slang terms - I think it is useful for the reader to know, for example, that "buttocks", "nates", "bum" and "arse", despite all referring to the same thing, are not interchangeable in most contexts.
  • Sort out the capitalisation. I think that it would probably be better for entries to use the template [[WikiSaurus:xxx]] (no lower-case initial letter) given that the entries are in the form "WikiSaurus:xxx". Yesterday I had to fix several entries that someone had created of the form "WikiSaurus:Xxx". As you know, these end up being listed in the category page under the capital letter rather than the lower-case letter (eg, "WikiSaurus:Instruction" was listed at I rather than at i).
  • A minor point: change "WikiSaurus" either to "Wikisaurus" or simply to "Thesaurus". My reasons for suggesting this: first, "Wiktionary", "Wikipedia" and the like don't have internal capital letters ("WikiPedia"); I think though that "Thesaurus", as someone has already suggested, might be better because WikiSaurus isn't a separate wiki, in the way that Wiktionary and Wikipedia are separate; it is a namespace within Wiktionary.
  • I think the word at the top of the page merely needs to be wikified but not made a section (see WikiSaurus:penis, I think); that is, as [[word]] rather than =[[word]]=, otherwise everything becomes included in this one section, which I think it is unnecessary to do.
  • Finally, once a format and style have been agreed on, a page needs to be written (perhaps by you, or by both of us) describing how to write a thesaurus entry. This will help maintain consistency of the format as new pages are added.
That's all that comes to mind at the moment. Is this the sort of thing you wanted from me?
As I have mentioned before, this probably needs reviving (again) in the beer parlour discussion to get acceptance and a majority behind it.
Regards, Paul G 09:50, 5 Feb 2005 (UTC)
Thanks Paul, exactly the sort of thing I was after.

Some of the things you say actually match my own thinking.

  • The capitalisation does seem to be a nit of a problem. I myself created a couple of wrong entruies. But, I someone else actually did that part, not me. I was waiting for someone elese to contribute, and doing that template thing was useful, but had that small flaw.
  • I agree that we should have the parts of speech separation, and the standard, technical, slang and taboo idea. Also the Language section bit. and not the word itself as a section.

But, about WikiSaurus vs Thesaurus - Hmm. This is not Roget's Thesaurus, or anyone else's Thesaurus, it's the Wiki Thesaurus. It's part of the project Wiktionary (absolutely no sense in being separate), but a Thesaurus is not part of a dictionary. It has a separate name. I'm not hung up on it, but I do like the name WikiSaurus. But Thesarus would be OK too. I gues we need to get some sort of vote/consensus.

Personally I find the Beer Parlour rather a noisy, rowdy sort of place to sort out the details of some Project/Idea. I prefer a separate Project Area/Back room snug, which doesn't attract the louts/vandals as much. With a discreet notice posted in the Beer PArlour to let people know they can drop into the back room if they are interested.

Plus, the Beer parlour really is getting unweildy, too big to load quickly. I keep finding my edits get rejected as the submit takes too long.

No time now, but I'll see what I can do tomorrow.

And thanks again.

No Bios Here[edit]

Thanks for the info Paul. I added some to fill in Wikified links in some pages. Perhaps it is best to link directly to w:, and I will do that in the future. --HiFlyer 17:16, 5 Feb 2005 (UTC)

French language conjugation table -er[edit]

Paul, I have created Template:fr-conj-er and tried it out on Aimer. However, it is 45 years since I failed my GCE 'O' level French, so I am not over-confident. There is a bit of Italian hiding somewhere, and I have used a mixture of English and French names for the tenses. It needs a good looking at. Could you correct it and improve it please, if you have the time. Cheers. Jeff. SemperBlotto 10:38, 6 Feb 2005 (UTC)

Hi Jeff,
I've had a look and the endings look OK to me, although I'm not too familiar with the more obscure ones, so I would need to look these up.
I've made some changes: "plus-que-parfait" is the pluperfect and "passé simple" is the past historic. I'm not sure what the "passé antérieur" is called in English - it would be something like the "pluperfect historic" but I've never heard of that. The "condizionale passato" would be "conditional perfect" or something, but I'm not sure what the term is in English.
One minor change I have made is to change "plus" to "followed by", which I think sounds better - more of a personal preference, really.
I've said it before, but I think these tables look really great. — Paul G 15:08, 7 Feb 2005 (UTC)
Found it - it's "past anterior". I'll change that too. — Paul G 15:08, 7 Feb 2005 (UTC)
...and it is indeed the conditional perfect. All done now. — Paul G 15:08, 7 Feb 2005 (UTC)

Place Names in England[edit]

Hello Paul, I thought that all the place names in Place names in England had been added by you, and therefore needed to be articles. I shall restrain myself. You might like to remove unwanted entries from the list (especially the minor Scilly Isles places). Jeff. SemperBlotto 10:45, 7 Feb 2005 (UTC)

Removing contents of articles: Hundreds and thousands[edit]

Hi Paul,

Would it be too much to ask that you not remove content from main articles until a mechanism is in place for WikiSaurus contents to be better displayed inside articles? My remaining complaint about WikiSaurus is that it implicitly removes content from articles that otherwise would be there. Actively whacking content (especially while WikiSaurus is still experimental) just does not seem like a good idea.

--Connel MacKenzie 17:54, 7 Feb 2005 (UTC)

OK, this seems fair. User:Richardb, who came up with WikiSaurus, and I have been discussing what to do with WikiSaurus for a little while now. Clearly this needs further discussion in the beer parlour, where it has been dormant for a while. — Paul G 18:03, 7 Feb 2005 (UTC)


Paul, would you like to add a pronunciation section to Birmingham to show the difference between the UK and US cities. Cheers. SemperBlotto 14:51, 8 Feb 2005 (UTC)

OK, done. I'm not quite sure about the symbol to be used for the vowel sound in the first syllable of the US pronunciation, but I've indicated the main difference (British "uhm" versus US "ham"). (Note that the pronunciation depends on the speaker, not on the city referred to.) — Paul G 15:12, 8 Feb 2005 (UTC)

Thanks Paul. And thanks for your work on the French template. I won't be adding any more, as its not my speciality. If you were wondering about some of my strange choice of words to add - I took a lump of random text from my website (part of my autobiography), wikified it and tested it out in the Sandbox. I'm slowly working through the mass of red links. Cheers Jeff. SemperBlotto 15:32, 8 Feb 2005 (UTC)


How do you spell floccinaucinilipilification then? --Connel MacKenzie 14:03, 9 Feb 2005 (UTC)

Thanks. --Connel MacKenzie 15:32, 9 Feb 2005 (UTC)

French conjugation templates.[edit]

Paul. I think that I am getting in over my head - I'll stick to Italian from now on. SemperBlotto 17:08, 10 Feb 2005 (UTC)

The "professor/terrorist" vandal[edit]


Thanks for the support. I was actually having breakfast with some friends. I assume it was more of the same "censor" type nonsense. I'm trying to think of a polite way to instruct this person on the finer aspects of NPOV, but keep getting caught up in what seems like absurd vandalism. That the "professor" is sincere I do not doubt; that he is correct I doubt highly. Who knows, maybe he really is a professor, and he's just sleep deprived or drunk or something.

Perhaps I'll just take a day or two to mull all this over. It makes me wonder why people think of Wiki* as a good place to push an agenda. I don't know why that is a natural human response, but it does seem to be prevalent.

--Connel MacKenzie 16:36, 11 Feb 2005 (UTC)

Rhymes - napoleon etc[edit]

I was going to add galleon but is says that word must be stressed on penultimate syllable. Is that true for napolEon? Or are you treating the -eo- as a single syllable (in which count the number os syllables seems to be wrong). SemperBlotto 12:16, 14 Feb 2005 (UTC)

Thanks - my mistake. It should be "antepenultimate". I'll change it. "Galleon" is not a rhyme - this would go in the table for the short "a" sound. — Paul G 12:17, 14 Feb 2005 (UTC)



Thank you for taking the bait. Pronunciations are a gigantic subject that it is very hard (at least for me) to get started with.

The IPA pronunciations do not "read" well, as the AHD style does, but there seems to be concensus that IPA is better. I don't understand why, but I also don't speak more than a few dozen phrases outside of American English.

Your example for "bed" vs. "bed" has me baffled still. How does a Britton say "bed"?

The Dipthongs/Tripthongs: um, I'm still lost on those.

I think your explanations deserve a place in the pronunciation guide somewhere. What do you think is an appropriate place for them?

I'd like to start by recording the sounds of all of these. Before linking them to the pronunciation pages, I think you'd better check my pronunciations of them. (Maybe this next weekend I'll record them? Maybe?)

I'll start this week tying to enter pronunciations for items appearing in category:acronyms - I would appreciate it if you gave them careful review, so I can learn this pronunciation system.

Thanks again. Looks like this will take me a few weeks to get comfortable with.

--Connel MacKenzie 16:16, 14 Feb 2005 (UTC)

After the lecture, time for questions :)
That's right, IPA doesn't read as well as, say, AHD, but AHD is designed for used with American English only, whereas IPA is designed for use with all languages. Some symbols will be familiar in some languages, others in others, and some in none at all. Unfortunately the alphabet wasn't big enough to cover all phonemes, so extra symbols were brought in.
That's why IPA is considered better - AHD has a go at representing some of the sounds of French or German, but doesn't cover, say, Xhosa, or some of the phonemes of the sounds of Italian. So what you lose in immediate readability, you gain in scope. It takes a while to be able to read it, like it does to learn to read music or any foreign language.
Yes, that much is clear; but because it is a black art simply to read it, I can't imagine ever providing an IPA pronunciation without an AHD one also. --Connel MacKenzie 18:42, 14 Feb 2005 (UTC)
/e/ versus /ɛ/: some dictionaries use one, some use the other. We agreed at some point to use /ɛ/ rather than /e/. I might have missed out /eɪ/ from the diphthongs. This stands for the "ay" sound in "day". Try saying "day" slowly and notice that there is an "e" sound that blends into an "i". Now say "bed". In RP, the mouth is more open for the latter than for the former. You might not notice any difference in your way of pronouncing these words.
I grew up in NY. I don't get this. Day sounds nothing like bed; the /ay/ sounds nothing like the /e/ to me. I don't "hear" an /e/ sound in day anywhere. Hmmmm. --Connel MacKenzie 18:42, 14 Feb 2005 (UTC)
I'm still having trouble thining of "bed" as anything other than one sylable. Does a thick British pronunciation of "bed" come out as [howling at the moon] \bay-ud\? --Connel MacKenzie 17:43, 10 Mar 2005 (UTC)
Or is it more of \bAY-ud\ or \bay-UD\? --Connel MacKenzie 18:51, 10 Mar 2005 (UTC)
Diphthongs/triphthongs - here I'm referring to groups of two/three consecutive phonemes used in a single vowel sound. So, for example, in "no", the vowel is written using one letter, but is pronounced as two sounds - this is a diphthong. IPA recognises this and transcribes the sound as two symbols (/əʊ/ - try saying the word slowly in an RP accent to hear the two sounds) rather than one, which is what AHD does (ō).
I don't pronounce the /o/ in no as two sounds. Do I? How would Homer Simpson's Doh! sound? Isn't that /oh/ a single sound? --Connel MacKenzie 18:42, 14 Feb 2005 (UTC)
There is a pronunciation guide somewhere - I don't remember where - maybe in an appendix - which tries to give examples of many of the IPA symbols in various languages, not just English. I didn't write it. It's a bit messy though. I've tried cleaning it up but it could still do with some more work. Definitely, though, it would be useful if this could be put somewhere for other users to refer to, as IPA can be seen as a bit of a black art. Perhaps called Wiktionary:xxx and linked from the "Articles" section of the main page would be a good place.
Recording the phonemes is a great idea, but if these are to represent RP, then we will need an RP speaker... can you do that? Even though I'm British my English is rather like Estuary English so I might not be the best person to do this either. But by all means go ahead and I'll be happy to review them for you.
Absolutely, positively, NOT. I want to record them, not to be the "offical" pronunciation, but so that I can check with you to see if I'm getting even close. Uploading all the separate sound files will likely inspire someone adept at RP to offer corrections (I hope!) --Connel MacKenzie 18:42, 14 Feb 2005 (UTC)
After Easter, (and posting concordances) I'll start on these. --Connel MacKenzie 17:43, 10 Mar 2005 (UTC)
If you want me to look at your IPA contributions, perhaps you could post links to the pages on this page, as then they'll be flagged up every time you add a new one and I'll be able to check it as soon as you do, provided I'm on Wiktionary, or the next time I'm on otherwise.
OK. I haven't started yet. Sounds like a plan. --Connel MacKenzie 18:42, 14 Feb 2005 (UTC)
Good on you for taking this on :) — Paul G 17:29, 14 Feb 2005 (UTC)
If it proves to be too cumbersome, I'll quickly drop it.  :-( --Connel MacKenzie 18:42, 14 Feb 2005 (UTC)


I'm not normally such a slow learner. But when you say Homer Simpson's "d'oh!" is a diphthong, my brain still gets stuck. He has a few variations on how he says it; I'm talking about the very short one - are you talking about "D'oOOoooOOOoooOOOh!" or "d'oh!"? --Connel MacKenzie 18:49, 15 Feb 2005 (UTC)

D'oh and diphthongs[edit]

I've just seen this, which has been hanging around unanswered on my talk page for a few weeks. Sorry for not having seen it sooner.

Recently, I was too busy to think of this, anyhow. Connel MacKenzie 18:51, 10 Mar 2005 (UTC)

> I'm not normally such a slow learner. But when you say Homer Simpson's
> "d'oh!" is a diphthong, my brain still gets stuck. He has a few
> variations on how he says it; I'm talking about the very short one - are
> you talking about "D'oOOoooOOOoooOOOh!" or "d'oh!"?
> --Connel MacKenzie 18:49, 15 Feb 2005 (UTC)

Compare the vowels in "fit" and "fear". In "fit", the sound of the "i" is the same from beginning to end. In "fear", it starts off something like the "i" in "fit" and ends up a bit like the "ir" in "bird" (in a US accent) or the "er" in "manner". So it's really two vowels, or a diphthong.

The same applies to "oh". In UK standard English, it starts off like the sound at the end of "Hannah" and ends up like the "oo" in "foot". In US English, it starts off as one vowel sound and ends a bit like an "oo". So, again, this is a diphthong. If you were to take a recording of Homer Simpson's "d'oh" - even a rapid one - and slow it down, this change would be clearly audible.

Paul G 18:04, 10 Mar 2005 (UTC)

No, I still have trouble grokking that. "D'Ooh" (what you seem to be talking about) is very different from "D'oh." In my brain, "D'Ooh" is a homynym of "dough" and "d'oh" a homynym of "doe." I can see how it can sound as a dipthong, but more often, it is not. Is that the rule then? If it can be then for IPA pronunciation, it must be listed as a dipthong? That would explain some of my difficulty with IPA. --Connel MacKenzie 18:51, 10 Mar 2005 (UTC)
Hm, maybe it's a single vowel sound in your accent. We would have to speak to each other for me to be able to explain it. You say po-tay-to, I say po-tah-to... :) (No one really says "po-tah-to", but we do differ on "to-may-to" and "to-mah-to".) — Paul G 09:31, 11 Mar 2005 (UTC)


Hi Paul,

Just wondering about your change to Alabama; did I get the capitol wrong? The State and capitols are often refered to collectively; the capitol is not obscure information like the state flower, or the state tree. --Connel MacKenzie 20:41, 14 Feb 2005 (UTC)

Hi Connel,
I don't even know what the capital of Alabama is :) However, I think it is a good principle on Wiktionary to keep any encyclopedic info to a minimum in a Wiktionary definition, referring the user to Wikipedia for all the other info. My thinking is that a Wiktionary entry should define a word so that a user knows what it means after having read the definition ("What does the word 'Alabama' mean? Oh, it's a state of the US"), while a Wikipedia entry should give in-depth information about a subject. The capital does not add anything to the definition, to my mind - Alabama is still a US state whatever its capital. In other words, my view is that Wiktionary defines words, while Wikipedia gives full treatment of the thing or concept that the word represents. The same idea applies to other entries that are proper nouns. — Paul G 11:14, 15 Feb 2005 (UTC)
I agree that entries here must not be encyclopedic. In my mind, the capital is always listed with the state; flags, birds, flowers, mottos etc. are superfluous, but the capital isn't. For consistency, do you want to change the one entry Alabama back, or remove information from the other 49? --Connel MacKenzie 18:35, 15 Feb 2005 (UTC)
I've restored the capital for constistency. — Paul G 09:32, 16 Feb 2005 (UTC)


Paul, I have just added dedurre but have forgotten how this sort of verb conjugates (and my little grammar book doesn't say). Do you have the facts to hand - otherwise I shall do some Googling this afternoon. SemperBlotto 12:12, 15 Feb 2005 (UTC)

The handful of verbs ending in -urre represent the "forgotten" fourth verb ending in Italian - compare verbs ending in -oir in French (such as "pouvoir").
I think it is "deduco, deduci, deduce", um, I can't remember, "deduciamo, deduciate", perhaps?, "deducono". Almost... the second-person plural is "deducete". Here's a link you'll find very, very useful. — Paul G 12:29, 15 Feb 2005 (UTC)


Hi Paul, yes, I'm familiar with the computing usage. When I tried it out on a test edit of my User Page, it took me right back to an edit by Guano Boy instead of to my previous edit. Easy to fix, but unexpected. SemperBlotto 17:54, 15 Feb 2005 (UTC)


I wasn't sure yesterday what to do with that 'leet' entry - I do not think Wiktionary allows them at this time; I just wasn't sure what to do with it. Do you know something I don't? I can't seem to find the relevant conversation at the moment. --Connel MacKenzie 18:31, 15 Feb 2005 (UTC)

There was a discussion about whether Leet is part of English in the beer parlour. I think it's still there. I was going to delete the entry. Maybe it should be marked for deletion and brought up in Requests for deletion so we can debate it. — Paul G 18:36, 15 Feb 2005 (UTC)

Duplicate page mess[edit]

Hello Paul. I understand that now. I thought it was some sort of glitch. Sorry, it won't happen again. — Malcolm of Pelshire 19:08, 15 Feb 2005 (UTC)

Re Welsh letter pages... Very well, I'll work on a way to do that. It had occurred to me, but I thought the resulting page would be too encyclopedic. Bum gall unwaith-hynny oedd; llefain pan ym ganed. (Welsh proverb) — Malcolm of Pelshire 19:08, 18 Feb 2005 (UTC)
Paul, I'd appreciate it if you would look at Wiktionary:About Welsh pronunciation and see if that's close to what you had in mind. Thanks, Malcolm of Pelshire 22:23, 19 Feb 2005 (UTC)

Rhymes suggestion[edit]

Hello Paul. Do you think it would be useful to have Rhymes entries for all the words ending in all the different pronunciations of -ough? Even if people don't understand the pronunciation characters, they might know the pronunciation of one of the rhyming words, so would know how to pronounce another. Just a thought. SemperBlotto 11:46, 17 Feb 2005 (UTC)

Hello Jeff. I'm not quite sure what you are suggesting. There are already rhymes pages for "cough", "though", "bough", etc, which are easily accessible through the table on the Rhymes:English page (the vowels in these words are as in "pop", "mow" and "cow", respectively, so users would just follow the links above these words).
Do you mean a page that has all of the words ending in -ough on it? They rhymes are ordered by sound, not by spelling, so I'm not sure how this might fit in. — Paul G 14:23, 17 Feb 2005 (UTC)
Ah, I did a "search" on /Rhymes slough/ (and a few others) and didn't find any. I hadn't found the Rhymes:English page. Jeff. SemperBlotto 15:18, 17 Feb 2005 (UTC)

Webster template[edit]

Paul, I think you created the Webster template. Perhaps you could change it, or create another modified form, to reflect that "part or all" of the page was imported, and that "some current usages may be missing."

Since Webster is such an important assist in so many words, the newly created page could then be altered and the user will have a better understanding of how the page was created. See Plebeian for an example of where a modified form of the Webster template would be appropriate. --HiFlyer 22:00, 18 Feb 2005 (UTC)

It looks like it was Dmh who created the page. I have made the modifications you have suggested. — Paul G 09:57, 21 Feb 2005 (UTC)
Good show! People were going to use the Webster reference anyway. Now they, (and I) have the option of bringing some new changes to the table in an honest way. --HiFlyer 15:37, 23 Feb 2005 (UTC)

dewikifying common language names[edit]

Hi Paul,

Where is the list of "common" language names. Can you point me in the direction of the relevant debate? I personally disagree with de-wikifying language names; common ones especially. But it might be worthwhile for me to read up on the extended discussion, before going on a massive revert spree.

--Connel MacKenzie 16:27, 21 Feb 2005 (UTC)

Hi Connel,
Each and every link in an entry puts strain on the server (a lookup has to be executed to know whether the linked to page exists or not, in order to color it red or blue). In the beginning even the names of parts of speech were links. By not wikifying the names of common languages, pages can be loaded a bit more quickly and the servers get to be more productive. That's the reasoning for not wikifying terms that will eventually come back on each and every page of Wiktionary. Polyglot 07:25, 23 Feb 2005 (UTC)
Yes, this is has been accepted practice in Wiktionary for quite some time. I wrote some guidelines on which language names to wikify and which not too - this is in the "Translations" section of the very useful Entry layout explained page. — Paul G 09:38, 23 Feb 2005 (UTC)

Foreign language entries[edit]

Hello Paul, thanks for the clean-ups, they are certainly more eloquent now. Given that foreign language entries should be translation only where possible, is etymological info too much info? Thanks. E. abu Filumena 16:58, 23 Feb 2005 (UTC)

Hi E.,
I was thinking about this just the other day. The honest answer is that I don't know. I'll raise it in the beer parlour. — Paul G 11:11, 9 Mar 2005 (UTC)
No need - Polyglot has answered the question on your user page. — Paul G 11:11, 9 Mar 2005 (UTC)


Hi Paul, could you have a look at Quale please. I have created it with example quotations as it's a bit confusing without. I am sure that you will find things to correct and improve on. Jeff. SemperBlotto 17:38, 23 Feb 2005 (UTC)

Hi Jeff,
The examples certainly make things much clearer. I've made some changes to the format, and added the feminine and plural forms of the relative pronoun. I'm not sure about the plural forms though; your example does not use "i quali" but "quali". I don't know which is correct. I'll request input from an Italian speaker. — Paul G 11:21, 9 Mar 2005 (UTC)

Given names[edit]

Hello Paul. I notice that you add the occasional minimal given name, and I wondered what the normal practice is. I have added Geoffrey - is it over the top? Jeffrey is quite minimal and Godfrey will be in between. Cheers (variant Jeffery) SemperBlotto 16:03, 10 Mar 2005 (UTC)

Hi Jeff(rey),
Looks good to me. It's good you've added the etymology. I'd lose the "famous people called Jeffrey" bit though - this seems a bit unnecessary to me, as it adds nothing to the meaning of the word. Is there a page called "Jeffrey" on Wikipedia that could be linked to instead? — Paul G 17:30, 10 Mar 2005 (UTC)

its history[edit]

arright, dunno if u wanna merge past historic with past historic tense somehow. I'll leave it up to you, as ur sysop n all and know these things better. And I never heard vire ton cul de mon paysage before I heard it on TV, but the Frenchies found it funny and said they use it occasionally --Wonderfool 18:18, 14 Mar 2005 (UTC)

OK, thanks for letting me know. — Paul G 18:18, 14 Mar 2005 (UTC)

Gerunds, Participles, etc.[edit]

Please have a look at Wiktionary:Beer_parlour#Gerunds,_Participles,_etc. and give your opinion. You were involved in an ealier, similar discussion, so I thought you will be able to make some valuable contributions. — Ncik 15 Mar 2005

Smoke explosion[edit]

Thanks for cleaning up my entry, I'll use the changes you made as a guide for the other words I plan to write definitions for. I hope to get a lot of the firefighting entries that are blank filled in soon, and may brush up the backdraft entry in Wikipedia a little more. Just curious, should anything about a term being a type of jargon be added, perhaps in the etymology? catseyes 16 Mar 2005


I'm not sure that I've ever seen hunky dory as a hypenated word. Perhaps that's a UK format and not common in the USA? In any case, in Japanese, honcho dori, the probable origin of the term is not hypenated. Suit yourself, but I'd have left it without a hyphen. Rever it if you like; it's not my call, really.


frankatca Frank Ferguson Lexington, MA

Frank, see this dictionary entry, or any paper dictionary. — Paul G 09:32, 21 Mar 2005 (UTC)

Dictionary collection[edit]

I'm sorry if I sounded boastful about my dictionary collection, but much to the displeasure of my wife my bibliomania is more severe than my wikiholism. It would be nice to list them all, but cataloguing is one of those tasks that I keep putting off until I have time to do it. My reference was not only to dictionarries, but also to style guides and other books about language. A significant portion of my collection is bilingual dictionnaries; I currently have an eBay bid on a Slovene-English dictionnary. When I was commenting on binomial names I was referring to the Council of Biology Editors Style Manual.

I just had to interrupt writing my letter to win another one: "Lexilogus or critical examination of the meaning and etymology of numerous Greek words and passages - intended principally for Homer and Hesiod" by Philip Buttmann (translated by Rev Fishlake)" published in 1861. What's remarkable is that Abebooks does not list this in its English translation.

Some of the Eric Partridge books are very good; I was first introduced to him back in my highschool days when I picked up a copy of his Shakespeare's Bawdy. I also have his Origins on etymology, and his Dictionary of Slang and Unconventional English is especially useful. If you find the 2002 paperback 8th edition, ask for a substantial discount on this pricy book. Pages 1042 and 1095 contain the material for pages 1142 and 1195 respectively on all copies! Among other things I have the classic Hobson-Jobson Dictionary for Indian English. My oldest one is now a two volume French book from 1767 which gives interesting usage comparisons between pairs of similar French words. I also pick up more limited books about words. Looking at the spines in front of me without causing a collaps of a pile I see Kacirk's The Word Museum, Elster's There's a Word for It and Novobatsky's Depraved and Insulting English. Eclecticology 18:24, 23 Mar 2005 (UTC)


Hello Paul. It was knaggy. I had just finished loading a bunch of words connected with my surname (w:Knaggs) when I looked at Recent Changes and saw it had clicked-over. Anyway, should we change to larger intervals now the rate of addition is increasing? Maybe every 5,000. SemperBlotto 11:35, 24 Mar 2005 (UTC)

Thanks for that. I've corrected the Milestones page.
Well, it does look as though the rate of increase in the size of Wiktionary is increasing: I believe there were around 20,000 entries when I joined. Can you suggest this in the beer parlour? — Paul G 11:51, 24 Mar 2005 (UTC)


Hello! I think that <input type="hidden" name="num" value="50"> should be inserted to so that 50 search matches could be displayed at one time. Greetings --Dubaduba 20:26, 26 Mar 2005 (UTC)

Thanks - I've raised this in the beer parlour. &madsh; Paul G 09:23, 29 Mar 2005 (UTC)


i wanna know, what script is it best u use so that i can read, and write the syntax or font for the rhymes-Wonderfool

Best to use Mozilla or Firefox as your browser. They display fine in these. For Internet Explorer, see this link. — Paul G 13:42, 30 Mar 2005 (UTC)

banning our friend[edit]

The ass pus user has been active for several weeks now. I, or somebody else, regularly bann him almost every day (sometimes twice a day). It would be nice to find his underlying IP address and ban that - but I don't know how to do that. p.s. thanks for the spelling correction. SemperBlotto 09:04, 31 Mar 2005 (UTC)

Hm, thanks for the info. I'll raise the question of user's IP addresses in the beer parlour, but one of the reasons for allowing usernames is to protect users' privacy (see the Wikipedia page about "why should I get myself a username?" or somesuch - sorry, I don't know the link to it). — Paul G 09:06, 31 Mar 2005 (UTC)

IPA Symbos in Edit Mode[edit]

I can't find the secondary stress (looks like ', but is supposed to be about level with a comma) in the box of symbols in edit mode. Could you add it? Ncik 06 Apr 2005

Oh, I must have overlooked that one. Yes, I'll add it. Thanks for letting me know. — Paul G 16:30, 6 Apr 2005 (UTC)
I've just checked, and it's there already. It's in the "other IPA symbols" - there are four: ˈ ˌ ː . (primary stress, secondary stress, length mark, syllabification mark) — Paul G 16:34, 6 Apr 2005 (UTC)
Thanks for the quick reply. I probably mistook it for a misplaced comma since it's the only symbol which isn't underlined, and so small that it might as well be black instead of blue. Is there any chance you could magnify the IPA symbols slightly? Ncik 06 Apr 2005
Well, I could, but that would make them look out of place with the others. I could just magnify everything. Of course, you can do this in your browser (Ctrl + increases the font size and Ctrl - reduces it in mine - Mozilla - or you can probably do this from Preferences or Options). I'll increase the size anyway because they are tinier than the font used in the edit box. — Paul G 16:54, 6 Apr 2005 (UTC)
Done. There was an HTML <small> tag in there, which seems to be quite unnecessary. The characters should be more comfortably readable now. — Paul G 16:57, 6 Apr 2005 (UTC)
Much better now! Ncik 06 Apr 2005


I don't think that there is any such thing as glutin. Do you mean gluten - the protein in cereals? SemperBlotto 13:39, 12 Apr 2005 (UTC)

No, "glutin" is what I meant. Gluten is pronounced /'glu:t@n/. I found this in - it might be worth checking it in a print dictionary though. — Paul G 13:42, 12 Apr 2005 (UTC)


In regards to your message on my talk page, I'd be requesting it for deletion for being the wrong sort of g. (-ægd instead of -æɡd). Should I go ahead with it anyway? Note I copied your version to -æɡd. --Wytukaze 15:52, 13 Apr 2005 (UTC)

I'm not sure what you mean. If it has the wrong g, the page should be moved rather than deleted. I'll check. — Paul G 15:57, 13 Apr 2005 (UTC)
Fixed. Thanks. — Paul G 16:02, 13 Apr 2005 (UTC)
No problem. And thanks for the corrections of my efforts on -æɡd, I didn't bother to read up too heavily on the formatting. My bad. --Wytukaze 16:08, 13 Apr 2005 (UTC)


Heh, I added the pl. for the ten previous words, and forgot one! Thanks for catching! (Too bad we don't have that wikidata system in place so this can all be form fillin...) Stan Shebs 23:56, 14 Apr 2005 (UTC)

Now, form-filling would be great, and would save a lot of typing. I've thought about that in the past. I think the format is standard enough to allow for it, provided a bit of flexibility could be catered for (perhaps with a free-text field). Why not mention this in the beer parlour and see what others think? — Paul G 08:57, 15 Apr 2005 (UTC)


I reverted your edit of fæces. I think it is wiser not to have a proper noun section which tends to make people add translations, pronunciation, and other stuff where they should rather use their time to make ((more) essential) contributions to faeces. Ncik 19 Apr 2005

In that case it would be better as a redirect, which will prevent anyone from doing this. I'll change it. — Paul G 13:08, 19 Apr 2005 (UTC)
I this case a redirect will most likely do the job. But this is not a general solution (and I'm only ever interested in general solutions) since the word might exist in another language in which it isn't just a spelling variant. Ncik 19 Apr 2005
I agree that this is a makeshift solution, and in this case, it is a word in another language, namely Latin. The appropriate solution is to write the entry something like this:




See faeces



This shows that all the definitions, translations, etc, are to be found at "faeces". Maybe this is what we should go with. — Paul G 13:24, 19 Apr 2005 (UTC)


Thanks, Paul. I am still familiarizing myself with Wikimedia conventions, so your comment is appreciated. That todo list is infact all of the red words from a 1001 word list of vocabulary words which I had sitting on my computer from the SAT/AP days, so I figured they would be good additions to wiktionary. TheDaveRoss 17:27, 19 Apr 2005 (UTC)

When to use 's[edit]

Hi Paul. I just noticed your usage notes for when to use the possessive. You might want to add a note on how to refer to decades since many people do not know the correct way and write "the 1980's" or "the 80's" when "the 1980s" and "the '80s" are the correct forms. Thanks. — Hippietrail 01:56, 23 Apr 2005 (UTC)

I've added "1980s" and "'80s" to the examples of correct plurals - is this what you were looking for? — Paul G 09:33, 25 Apr 2005 (UTC)
Actually I've added "'80s" and "80s", as the former can be considered an abbreviation of "1980s" and the latter as "eighties" written using numerals. There is no apostrophe when writing "eighties" as a short form of "nineteen-eighties", so I believe this makes "80s" (without an apostrophe) acceptable. In fact, to my eye, the apostrophe-free version looks more correct. It's possible that usage varies locally. — Paul G 09:41, 25 Apr 2005 (UTC)
Hi again Paul. Glad you were able to use my tip. Keep up the good work (not just my tips either or course)! — Hippietrail 13:48, 27 Apr 2005 (UTC)

Merci 66000[edit]

Cela flatte mon égo!

Parlez vous français?

--MG 08:18, 23 Apr 2005 (UTC)


You couldnt look over the French part of this could you? i explained the difference as best as i could. --Wonderfool 11:06, 23 Apr 2005 (UTC)

I've made a few changes but I think it needs more. In particular, I'm not convinced that the usage note is correct. I've asked User:MG, who is French or a French speaker, to have a look too. — Paul G 09:27, 25 Apr 2005 (UTC)

Related vs. See Also[edit]

Thanks for that clarification Paul, I am sure I should have noticed that by now. Keep settin' me straight! TheDaveRoss

unavoidable / inevitable[edit]

I have merged the definitions in unavoidable and wikified the existing inevitable (where I was able to find two meanings!) SemperBlotto 16:19, 27 Apr 2005 (UTC)

Thanks! Now I have been able to add the French translation. — Paul G 16:27, 27 Apr 2005 (UTC)


The AP vandal has struck again. Don't you admin types have a way to quickly revert that stuff? Check Recent changes. Kevin Rector 09:07, 29 Apr 2005 (UTC)


Dear Mr. Giaccone, The use of "æ" and "œ" is not archaic or old-fashioned, but the correct way of writing certain English words. It also helps to differentiate between pronunciation of words such as "æon" and "aeroplane". Therefore they should be used where appropriate as the primary spelling of a word, as they are in many dictionaries such as "Chambers's Twentieth Century Dictionary". Such spellings are still frequently used by people, including me, in their writings. The use of "ae" or "oe" where "æ" or "œ" should be used is not correct English.

How to create a sysop account[edit]

Hi, Paul! I wanted to create a Wiktionary in the Norsk (nynorsk) language (my mother tongue), and I wonder if you can help. I found that there was already an empty wiktionary under, and that it is possible to edit pages there. But apparently it has no sysops and no bureaucrats. Do you have any idea how I or someone else can become an administrator there?
I'd appreciate any pointers you can give me!
Verdlanco 17:38, 29 Apr 2005 (UTC)