Wiktionary:About Spanish

Definition from Wiktionary, the free dictionary
Jump to: navigation, search
Accessories-text-editor.svg This is a Wiktionary policy, guideline or common practices page. Specifically it is a policy think tank, working to develop a formal policy.

Note 1: This guide is intended to provide guidelines both for creating Spanish entries on English Wiktionary as well as for adding Spanish translations to English words. The main guidelines for creating any entry on English Wiktionary is set forth in Wiktionary:Entry layout explained; this page is an addition to that page, not a replacement.

Note 2: If a change occurs in the basic Wiktionary template (currently at Wiktionary:Entry layout explained that affects Spanish entries, then that change should be reflected here.

Creating Spanish entries

Entry name

The name of the entry is that of the word or phrase that you are defining.

Capitalization: Spanish does not capitalize words as often as English, so the entry name will usually begin with a lowercase letter. Exceptions include many abbreviations and some proper nouns, such as names of people and countries.

Diacritics: Spanish uses two diacritics: the acute accent (á é í ó ú) and the dieresis (ü). These should always be included. Spanish speakers often drop acute accents from capital letters, but at Wiktionary we always include them. Similarly, the letters n and ñ should always be distinguished.

Periods: Periods are used only in abbreviations (abreviatura such as EE. UU.). Symbols (such as cm or $), shortenings (acortamientos such as foto) and all types of acronyms and initialims (siglas and acrónimos) don't use periods.

The essentials

  1. Language header lets you know the language of the word in question (==Spanish==). It is almost always in a level two heading (See Wiktionary:How to edit a page for some basic terminology we use). When there is more than one language header on a page, the language headers should appear in alphabetical order with Translingual and English given priority. Do not use Castilian in the language header.
  2. Part of Speech header It is the key descriptor for the grammatical function of the term in question (such as 'noun', 'verb', etc). The definitions themselves come within its scope. This heading is most frequently in a level three heading, and a page may have more than one for a single language.
  3. Headword line is the line immediately following the part of speech header. In the simplest entries, this will be just {{head|es|(part of speech)}}. It is preferred to make use of the standard headword templates provided.
  4. Definitions or Translations of the word appear as a numbered list in the part of speech section immediately following the headword line, though it is a good idea to include a blank line in between for ease of editing.

A very simple example

This is a simple entry for the word lápiz, and shows the most fundamental elements of an article:

  1. the word’s language (as a level 2 heading),
  2. its part of speech or "type" (as a level 3 heading),
  3. the word itself (using the correct Part of Speech template),
  4. a definition (preceded by "#", which causes automatic numbering),
  5. and links in the definition or translation for key words.

This example can be copied and used to start an article or section of an article.



# [[pencil]], [[crayon]]
# [[graphite]]

Formatting Spanish entries

Preferred order of sections

The part of speech section will often include simple translation(s) into English in place of definitions, but there may be subsections.

Following is the preferred sequence for these standard sections:

 ===Alternative forms===
 ====Usage notes====
 ====Conjugation==== (''Note: Only for verb entries'')
 ====Related terms====
 ===See also===

Please note that the Noun header is only one possible part of speech that may appear as the header. If the entry being created is for a Spanish verb, then "Verb" should appear in place of the word "Noun" in the example above.


If you read Spanish, a good place to get the etymology information for a word is the Spanish Royal Academy's Dictionary. If the word is a derivative using a suffix/prefix and another word you can note that as well ([[Category:Spanish suffixes]], [[Category:Spanish prefixes]]). Examples:

  • For volar (to fly) From {{etyl|la|es}} {{term|volare|volāre|lang=la}}, present active infinitive of {{term|volo|volō|lang=la}}.
  • For cafetal (coffee field) {{suffix|café|al|lang=es}}
  • For antemano (beforehand) {{prefix|ante|mano|lang=es}}

Etymologies should be traced back to lemma forms whenever possible.


The following accent tags can be used to distinguish between Spanish dialects:

Phonemic transcriptions
Phonetic transcriptions
  • Spain: {{a|Northern Spain}}, {{a|Southern Spain}}, {{a|Canarian Spanish}}, ...
  • Latin America: {{a|coastal Mexico}}, {{a|Peru}}, {{a|Costa Rica}}, {{a|Puerto Rico}}, {{a|Andean Venezuela}}, {{a|highland Bolivia}}, {{a|Peruvian Sierra}}, ...

See Wiktionary:Spanish pronunciation for the specific IPA symbols used for Spanish phonemes and phones.

Headword line templates

Most English entries use a headword template immediately following the part of speech header. For Spanish entries, the following templates are available.

For lemma Noun entries (singular forms of nouns, not plurals [Note: It is not yet clear whether to treat the feminine form of certain male/female noun pairs (e.g. amiga) as its own lemma form or as a gender-inflected non-lemma form of the masculine form.]):

  • {{es-noun|m}} for masculine nouns
  • {{es-noun|f}} for feminine nouns
  • {{es-noun|mf}} for countable nouns which have forms of both genders

For lemma Verb entries (the infinitive):

For lemma Adjective entries (usually masculine singular):

  • {{es-adj}} (see template page for information about indicating feminine form)

For non-lemma noun, verb, and adjective entries (e.g. plurals of nouns, feminine and forms of adjectives, and verb forms that do not end in -r), {{head}} may be used instead:

  • {{head|es|noun form}}
  • {{head|es|verb form|}}
  • {{head|es|adjective form}}

Some non-lemma forms may be better expressed with only the term bolded (or a template that produces such a result, such as es-verb-form), while information on the form is provided on the definition line (through a template such as es-verb form of). This is particularly helpful in verb forms, which may have multiple definitions.

Other Spanish aids