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Welcome to the Information desk of Wiktionary, a place where newcomers can ask questions about words and about Wiktionary, ask for help, or post miscellaneous ideas that don’t fit in any of the other rooms.

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For past questions, see /Archives.


April 2015

Grand Sophy[edit]

How or where do I add "Grand Sophy", "Sophy" is a title, that is also found with the "Grand" epithet/adjective? I don't think it should be a separate entry. I don't think it is a separate sense of "Sophy". Do I add "Grand Sophy" as usage note in "Sophy"? Where do place the attributions, do I add attributions in a usage note? —BoBoMisiu (talk) 21:40, 6 April 2015 (UTC)

*whatever* has an article on wikipedia ...[edit]

I strongly suggest to to remove this - bot-created? - thingy off of every page where the "article" on en-wikipedia is but a redirect. A redirect is not any help whatsoever on a word redirected to whereever else, instead just pissing off anyone who falls for that (bot-created?) link. Should not be that hard to check, is it ? thanks. 46.142.33.13 04:50, 8 April 2015 (UTC)

I think that these links are bridges to the encyclopedic world. A link to a redirect might be relevant, but I agree that a link to the actual page would be much better. However, the major issue is that a link from e.g. a common noun to a town with the same (capitalized) name is 100% irrelevant. A bot cannot make the difference between relevant links and irrelevant links, except for entries with the same name (capitalized in both projects). Bots should not be used in other cases. Lmaltier (talk) 15:12, 11 April 2015 (UTC)
Hi. I made above entry, as you can see middle of the night and probably not even sober. Ehem. Sorry.
I did not mean the problem with links to something else with the same name, but to redirects -> articles under a completely different "word". I mean whoever is here looking up things in wiktionary.org probably is interested in the word itself, e.g. etymology of "helium", not necessarily in all the technical and whatnot aspects of helium within the real world. In this case, the link "wikipedia has an entry on helium" is serving well, that article is under the lemma helium, and has a "history" section explaining why this name "helium". But if look up "harlot" in wiktionary, and lets say not satisfied with the etymology bit I click the link thingy "wp has an entry on harlot" -> it has NOT. It has but a redirect to "prostitute" and of course that article on "prostitute" has absolutely nothing about the word "harlot".
I was just hoping that it might be feasible to give that bot creating those links to wikipedia some criteria so it could decide to not enter that link thingy into wiktionary pages when the wp-target is but a redirect. dab pages would not be affected, since they are not redirects. But maybe that is not feasible ? ah, well, then … 46.142.74.247 19:55, 15 April 2015 (UTC)
There is no such bot. The {{wikipedia}} template (or whatever it redirects to) creates the link based on either the page name of the entry, or on whatever it's given as a parameter. The problem is that (as far as I know), templates can't check for redirects on other wikis. Besides, the Wikipedia links aren't there for people who want more dictionary-type information such as etymologies, they're there so people who want to know more about the concept referred to by the term can read about it in an encyclopedia article. In other words, a {{wikipedia}} template in the harlot entry should be changed to link to w:Prostitute directly- but that would have to be done by hand (one could program a bot to do it, but someone would have to take that on as a project, and it doesn't sound like a very good use of a bot owner's time). Chuck Entz (talk) 02:05, 16 April 2015 (UTC)

Dump of English words[edit]

Hi, is there any more up-to-date dump of English words available than the one at http://en.wiktionary.org/wiki/Index:English dated 2012-Apr-28? 109.145.180.118 00:58, 10 April 2015 (UTC)

Yes: [1]. Equinox 01:04, 10 April 2015 (UTC)
Thanks very much for the reply. The linked pages contain a lot of stuff which I don't fully understand, and I can't really find what I am looking for. Could you (or someone) possibly give me specific instructions on where I can download the list of English words? 109.145.180.118 01:26, 10 April 2015 (UTC)
Anyone? 81.152.230.182 11:23, 11 April 2015 (UTC)
Try here: [2]. You can't just get the "list of all page titles" because that will include non-English words too. Perhaps get "all pages, current versions only", and then discard any page whose content does not include the string ==English==. It might require a little programming, or some kind of search-in-files tool. Equinox 11:53, 11 April 2015 (UTC)
Thanks for your reply. This is much more complicated than I envisaged from your first reply. So there is no way just to get an up-to-date list of English words in simple user-readable format? I think that would be a valuable facility. 81.152.230.182 17:10, 11 April 2015 (UTC)
Once upon a time Index:English was kept up to date. But, as with all other languages, this is sadly no longer the case. SemperBlotto (talk) 07:54, 12 April 2015 (UTC)
OK, thanks. 109.153.245.85 19:21, 12 April 2015 (UTC)
  • By the way, in case anyone cares, or ever wants to run the process again, I think there may be a slight glitch somewhere in the generation of Index:English. One or two common words, e.g. "confer", "prefer", "tolerance", which I assume must have been entered at the time of the 2012-Apr-28 database dump, are inexplicably omitted. 109.157.11.62 02:01, 15 April 2015 (UTC)
  • Index:English is outdated and should probably not be used. If you want to "screen-scrape" the English word list, then you should now use Category:English_lemmas plus Category:English_non-lemma_forms. Since this involves at least as much programming as my previous suggestion regarding the data dump, I don't see why anyone would do it. Equinox 03:09, 15 April 2015 (UTC)
  • Original poster, if you're desperate for the English word list (but let me warn you it will include things like aargh, bzzzt, niggerfucker and supercalifragilisticexpialidocious, so it might not suit your Facebook Scrabble game): I can probably generate it for you. But right now I'm very busy with some academic commitments so it might take me a little while. Equinox 03:16, 15 April 2015 (UTC)
If you do ever get the time to do this, I think it would be a very useful facility. Free, high quality word / phrase lists are always valuable. From my point of view, it would be useful to include inflections (plurals, verb inflections, comparatives, superlatives), but to exclude misspellings, such as recieve. If you ever do do it, I think it would be helpful to put a link at the top of "Index:English" saying "For more up-to-date list, go here" -- that's assuming you don't replace "Index:English" itself. Another possiblity is that I may be able to do it myself from the database dump, but the main sticking point is that I cannot read the "bz2" format, and I cannot install any software to enable me to do so. How hard would it be for someone to convert the "bz2" file to a "zip" file that I can open with standard Windows software? 86.152.163.58 17:14, 15 April 2015 (UTC)
  • It's a shame this hasn't been updated in three years. We've added a LOT of new entries since then. Is there no one out there with the relevant expertise who can publish an updated index? ---> Tooironic (talk) 02:36, 17 April 2015 (UTC)

Poe's law[edit]

Can Poe, as a noun, be used as to refer to an instance of Poe's law? For example That statement is a Poe, to mean the statement is false, and has been created to discredit the purported author? LongHairedFop

  • Basically it depends on the existence of evidence. Can you see such usage in the real world - Google book search for instance. SemperBlotto (talk) 07:32, 11 April 2015 (UTC)
A quick Google search, with quotes, for "that is a poe" -power found a few relevant hits. Confounding the search is that Poe can refer to Power over Ethernet, Edgar Allan Poe, or directly to Poe's Law. The hits are
  1. http://slymepit.com/phpbb/viewtopic.php?p=33187#p33168
  2. http://www.patheos.com/blogs/friendlyatheist/2013/07/20/american-atheists-bench-in-florida-gets-vandalized-and-we-know-who-did-it/#comment-971511601
  3. http://www.rationalskepticism.org/islam/the-obedient-wife-club-t22840-20.html#p875855
However, they are all in comments, rather than the site's author, so there may be less weight to them. I'm not sure if it is enough of a neologism to warrant inclusion, which is why I'm asking here. LongHairedFop (talk) 10:21, 11 April 2015 (UTC)
@LongHairedFop: I think describing your example in terms of Poe's law, "that statement is a Poe", would not "mean the statement is false" but that it is not discernable. I don't think it distinguishes whether the statement "has been created to discredit the purported author." In that sense, I think "that statement is a Poe" is equivalent to "that statement is indiscernible." The links you gave show a different sense, that a poe is someone or something fictitious. —BoBoMisiu (talk) 18:50, 11 April 2015 (UTC)

how can you submit a new word?[edit]

How do you submit a new word to Wiktionary?

Wikidictionary Babel[edit]

How do you guys know if someone truly knows a language at a near native level? Do you test anyone?

No. It's entirely based on self-reporting. —Aɴɢʀ (talk) 20:40, 16 April 2015 (UTC)

-iter - German?[edit]

Words with -iter do (or more like did) exist in German too. E.g.: "So wie aber die Tochter das Substantiv nur pronominaliter und die Mutter das Adjektiv nur adverbialiter begreift [...]" (older book); idealiter, generaliter, realiter (duden.de). Some of these words could even be pseudo-latinisms, i.e. they might be created in German and not exist in Latin.
So: is -iter also German? If not: Should "German" -iter be mentioned anyway, of course with notes like "only in latinisms", "not productive"? -23:14, 19 April 2015 (UTC)

Serious help needed with this template[edit]

Discussion moved to WT:Grease pit/2015/April#Serious help needed with this template.

Why is there no conjugation tables for the English words?[edit]

Why is this? I think that it would be very useful to have. The Swedish wiktionary has conjugations for its terms, the Icelandic wiktionary has conjugations for its terms and Dutch has conjugations for its terms etc. Why doesn't the English version of wiktionary have this?

What do you expect to see, exactly? We already list the inflections for English verbs (goes, going, went, gone). Equinox 20:37, 26 April 2015 (UTC)
Okay, so the grammar isn't more complicated than that? I mean, I've never really thought about it, but isn't their some sort of archaic forms? Dreysman (talk) 20:51, 26 April 2015 (UTC)
Yes, they're pretty repetitive: it's not like e.g. French or Finnish where you need huge conjugation tables for gender and grammatical case. The nastiest English verb is "be", where we do actually have a table. There are archaic forms (goest, goeth) but they don't exist for all verbs, and I think consensus is against including them at the lemma form. Equinox 20:52, 26 April 2015 (UTC)
Okay, that's all I needed to know, thanks! Dreysman (talk) 21:25, 26 April 2015 (UTC)

Creating a new page[edit]

What are the stipulations for creating a new page for a protologism?

"Don't". —CodeCat 15:43, 30 April 2015 (UTC)
Could you give me a better understanding of why I should not? --Netterandrew (talk) 15:56, 30 April 2015 (UTC)
Because we don't allow entries for protologisms on Wiktionary. —CodeCat 16:53, 30 April 2015 (UTC)
The steps for creating a new page for a protologism are as follows:
  1. Create your protologism someplace other than Wiktionary.
  2. Make your protologism so popular that at least three people independent of you use it in a durably archived medium (e.g. a print book, newspaper, or magazine) over the space of more than a year.
  3. Add the new Wiktionary entry for your protologism, providing the citations for who has used it and where.
Good luck! —Aɴɢʀ (talk) 20:20, 30 April 2015 (UTC)

May 2015

Basic linguistics[edit]

Hi. I want to learn more about the science of linguistics, like about morphology/phonetics/IPA/etc. This is not taught in my high school. Is there a way I can learn about basic linguistics science with basic wordings? As in like middle school classroom typed language? I like things I can understand easily. Thanks. NativeCat drop by and say Hi! 04:09, 11 May 2015 (UTC)

Also it has to be something online and free. NativeCat drop by and say Hi! 04:15, 11 May 2015 (UTC)
There's a textbook for linguistics at Wikibooks, so it's online and free, but I don't know how good it is or how easy it would be for a middle-schooler to understand. Linguistics isn't usually taught before the undergraduate university level, so that is usually the target audience for textbooks. —Aɴɢʀ (talk) 10:16, 11 May 2015 (UTC)

zur#Spanish[edit]

globe, focusing on the Spanish writing Mar del Zur.

I was quite excited to come across this globe in our shop. The writing, not that you can see all of it, is in Spanish and Latin. However the Spanish is archaic, it features the writing mar del zur and not pictured, mar del nort. This is obviously not contemporary Spanish. Can anyone work out when the spelling zur was used? It would give me an insight into how old the piece is. Renard Migrant (talk) 15:25, 12 May 2015 (UTC)

Google Books Ngrams isn't looking promising. Deliberate misspellings? Not Spanish? Renard Migrant (talk) 15:43, 12 May 2015 (UTC)
If you look at w:Abraham Ortelius, you'll see a map from 1589 that uses that spelling. Ortelius was Flemish, but was in the service of the king of Spain. You'll probably get better results by looking at the place names to see if there are any historical clues from what different places are called. Of course, there's always the possibility that this a modern copy of an older globe, with decorative details like dragons thrown in for artistic effect. Chuck Entz (talk) 02:09, 13 May 2015 (UTC)
Where's "our shop"? I'm coming to buy that globe. Equinox 02:52, 17 May 2015 (UTC)
I found a hit from 1748. --Type56op9 (talk) 14:07, 17 May 2015 (UTC)

Navarro-Aragonese[edit]

Are there any good resources on the Navarro-Aragonese language? I’d like to add some words. --Romanophile (talk) 09:51, 13 May 2015 (UTC)

The first place I'd look is in the books cited in the footnote section of Navarro-Aragonese. It doesn't actually have an ISO code; do we want to create one for it, or shall we consider it an archaic variety of Aragonese (code an) and tag it with a context label like {{label|an|Navarro-Aragonese}}? —Aɴɢʀ (talk) 11:16, 13 May 2015 (UTC)
Defining the name of the language would be the first thing to do. SemperBlotto (talk) 08:05, 14 May 2015 (UTC)
[3], [4] (watch out for normalisations). — Ungoliant (falai) 15:58, 14 May 2015 (UTC)

Do we also have a term for the ancestor of Asturian? What is it? --Romanophile (talk) 10:57, 19 May 2015 (UTC)

Old Leonese (roa-ole). — Ungoliant (falai) 15:32, 19 May 2015 (UTC)

Problem creating new entry[edit]

I intended to create a new entry for "ZOPA" (= Zone of Possible Agreement), but when I follow the instructions at https://en.wiktionary.org/wiki/Help:Starting_a_new_page, I simply get taken to the existing "zopa". So how do I create "ZOPA"? 86.186.14.111 02:45, 17 May 2015 (UTC)

Click this link [5] Equinox 02:49, 17 May 2015 (UTC)
Thanks! I see that someone else has now already created the entry. I think it would be useful to update the instructions at https://en.wiktionary.org/wiki/Help:Starting_a_new_page to include the information about how to create an entry when a case variant already exists. I would be happy to do this myself, except I am unable to edit the help page. 86.183.128.199 17:19, 17 May 2015 (UTC)
The easy way is to create a redlink on an existing page and then click that. For example, if you type ZORI in the search box, it just takes you to the page zori (which is a relatively new feature; when the help page was written that didn't happen), but if you make the link ZORI on a page and then click it, you can start a new page. (You don't even have to save the page with the redlink on it; just click "Show preview" and then click the redlink.) —Aɴɢʀ (talk) 17:32, 17 May 2015 (UTC)
The IP is right, auto-redirects are quite irritating when you want to create an entry and the title already exists with variants caps or diacritics. For genevre yesterday it took me to génèvre so I had to type directly into the URL https://en.wiktionary.org/wiki/genevre to stop it taking me to génèvre. I've been here since 2007 and it's taking me a while to get my head around it! Renard Migrant (talk) 17:32, 17 May 2015 (UTC)
The easiest way is to go to the existing entry and add an {{also}} template at the top. That generates a red link for the one you want to add. Don't forget to do the same in reverse. SemperBlotto (talk) 06:58, 18 May 2015 (UTC)

vandal[edit]

Is there a synonym for this word that’s less offensive to ancient Germanians? --Romanophile (talk) 08:38, 19 May 2015 (UTC)

List of wiktionary user promotons[edit]

Could someone give me the link of wiktionary user promotions list? It is a list of user jobs I guess like admins and stewarts. I cannot seem to find the page

Interwiki problem with proverbs[edit]

The names of pages with proverbs start with minuscule letters and do not end with full stops, even when the proverbs are sentences (barking dogs seldom bite). Czech Wiktionary has a different attitude: all the proverbs that are sentences there start with capital letters and end with periods (cs:Pes, který štěká, nekouše.). Is there any way how to connect the English Wiktionary page pes, který štěká, nekouše with the Czech Wiktionary page of the same proverb? They are the same proverbs, the same wording, the same spelling, everything is the same, only the attitude to naming proverb pages is different. Jan.Kamenicek (talk) 20:29, 26 May 2015 (UTC)

Probably the best way would be to make a redirect from Pes, který štěká, nekouše. to pes, který štěká, nekouše here at en-wikt as well as a redirect in the opposite direction at cs-wikt. That way the bots will connect one language's entry to the other language's redirect and vice versa, and both pages can be found. —Aɴɢʀ (talk) 20:43, 26 May 2015 (UTC)
Thank you. Jan.Kamenicek (talk) 11:43, 27 May 2015 (UTC)

The best way is actually to correct bots to not assume that interwikis will be always in the very same form.
Danny B. (talk) 11:50, 27 May 2015 (UTC)

I Agree. However until this is done I think we have to accept Angr's suggestion. Jan.Kamenicek (talk) 12:12, 27 May 2015 (UTC)

There are two problems.

  1. When is bot running in -wiktionary mode, it ignores all pages, which have not identical names, even if they are redirects. Without this mode it will follow all redirects (there are in some small languages redirects from english words to local language).
  2. When is bot running with manual conrol, there exists some abuse filter in en.wikt which prevents to save differenrt form (example). JAn Dudík (talk) 13:10, 27 May 2015 (UTC)

I think there are not many cases like that, so it could be done manually. Unfortunately, it is impossible too. If you do it, you get abuse filter warning first, and if you continue, your edit is promptly reverted anyway, no matter that the edit was explained in the summary in detail. Jan.Kamenicek (talk) 18:26, 27 May 2015 (UTC)

newbie spellin query[edit]

how do i find a word in the wiktionary if i do not know what the proper spelling is?

newbie spellin query ariola[edit]

how do i find a word in the wiktionary if i do not know what the proper spelling is? ariola

The search mechanism will try to suggest similar words, but it's not perfect. Perhaps aureola? Equinox 22:43, 26 May 2015 (UTC)
Almost certainly areola. SemperBlotto (talk) 06:33, 31 May 2015 (UTC)

secret underworld auction[edit]

On the TV show New Tricks I heard a UK (criminal jargon?) name for a secret underworld auction, presumably for stolen art and other similar items, that was something like nablus. Does anyone know a good spelling for this? DCDuring TALK 00:00, 30 May 2015 (UTC)

getting started with adding kanji definitions[edit]

As I'm fairly new to any serious editing/entering of information that require sources, I would like information on how to properly edit entries. Would anyone be so kind as to get me started or direct me to relevant information?

Specifically, as I'm studying Japanese Kanji, I occasionally run into words that haven't got a definition yet and before contributing I would need to know which sources are considered valid, what issues I should avoid with regards to "non-latin" characters, proper romanization.

I am familiar with basic editing and format coding, apart from correctly adding sources, so 'Help:How to edit a page' unfortunately isn't providing me with anything useful or new.

Thanks in advance, OmikronWeapon (talk) 10:21, 31 May 2015 (UTC)

Generally speaking, you don’t need sources when you enter definitions. You might ask @Atitarev if he has any suggestions or needs as far as entering definitions for Japanese Kanji. You may be thinking of Wikipedia, where everything has to be sourced. Here we usually don’t need sources (as long as you’re not copying a lot of copyrighted text word for word). —Stephen (Talk) 04:20, 2 June 2015 (UTC)

Use of the term "CC-BY-SA"[edit]

The Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike 3.0 Unported license is not abbreviated to "CC-BY-SA"; Creative Commons' official abbreviation is "CC BY-SA", per their website and others. I'd like to get consensus to deprecate the term "CC-BY-SA" and replace it in all visible places with "CC BY-SA". Thanks, --L235 (talk) enwiki 21:58, 31 May 2015 (UTC)

There are... quite a lot of these, and unfortunately neither the search engine nor Google can distinguish between hyphens and spaces, so I don't know how many. Given that the form with the hyphen is pretty common anyway, is it worth the work? ObsequiousNewt (εἴρηκα|πεποίηκα) 17:14, 1 June 2015 (UTC)
@ObsequiousNewt: Well, there doesn't need to be a systemic race to find them and get rid of them; just a passive "if I notice it I'll change it over". Does that sound fine? --L235 (talk) enwiki 18:12, 1 June 2015 (UTC) Looks like first ping didn't work; repinging: @ObsequiousNewt: --L235 (talk) enwiki 18:13, 1 June 2015 (UTC)
I think he means that they cannot distinguish hyphens and spaces on the internet, so we can’t get an idea about which spelling is more common. "CC-BY-SA" is certainly used in printed books, and that makes it a valid spelling as far as we are concerned. See here for some examples in printed works. If there are three or more, that’s enough for it to be included here. —Stephen (Talk) 03:37, 2 June 2015 (UTC)

June 2015

adjective[edit]

If an adjective is neither comparative nor superlative, what is it? --Romanophile (talk) 11:33, 1 June 2015 (UTC)

positive. —Aɴɢʀ (talk) 19:09, 1 June 2015 (UTC)

Template:la-num-card[edit]

Please fix this template by changing "|plural|mīlia}}" to "|plural|mīlia|plural 2|mīllia}}", as there is the entry millia and as millia can be found (e.g. in grammar books from the 19th century). -93.196.241.177 16:23, 31 May 2015 (UTC)