Talk:Missolonghi

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Untitled[edit]

Out of curiosity, and this is not a major complaint, but does this place really deserve the category of Holy Cities? I'm not very familiar with Greek culture, so I'm not saying this categorization is incorrect, but the current depiction doesn't make it seem much like a "true" holy city. There have been plenty of places where great battles have been won that were called Miracles and the like, but even if they got titles that involved the word Holy, they may not be holy cities... if that makes any sense. |Compiègne, any number of places over ancient Israel, wherever the Battle of Badr took place, and so on aren't special sites of religious significance.

It all depends on whom you ask, I suspect. This city is certainly holy to me as a Greek, while I couldn't care less about other cities in the category such as Jerusalem or Mecca, for instance. Who decides what makes a "true" holy city?--ΚέκρωΨ 16:31, 12 August 2006 (UTC)

About the name spelling: why it is written as Messolonghi when the official Greek-Latin transliteration is 'Mesologgi'? [well, maybe the answer is (of course) this is not a latin wikipedia but this doesn't help transliterate greek names in a uniform manner--Κλειδοκράτωρ (talk) 15:51, 17 June 2011 (UTC)

Requested move[edit]

The following discussion is an archived discussion of a requested move. Please do not modify it. Subsequent comments should be made in a new section on the talk page. No further edits should be made to this section.

The result of the move request was: Move to Missolonghi - This is the most common name in English-language sources. Neelix (talk) 16:35, 26 July 2011 (UTC)


MessolonghiMissolonghi – per WP:COMMONNAME & WP:USEENGLISH

Missolonghi, Messolonghi, Misolonghi, Mesolonghi, Mesologgi: Google Books Ngram Viewer

It's clear that "Messolonghi" is not common name. It's very clear "Missolonghi" is common name in English language. Takabeg (talk) 22:37, 17 July 2011 (UTC)

  • Strongly support. This place is primarily known in the context of Byron's death, and is therefore spelt Missolonghi. Since Messolonghi is not the systematic transliteration (there is no double sigma), there is no reason to keep it. Septentrionalis PMAnderson 23:06, 17 July 2011 (UTC)


  • Oppose. The way I understand Wikipedia practice, modern toponyms are transliterated from their native name, regardless of their historical names or the historical or popular English forms, else we'd have Angora and Bombay, and not Ankara and Mumbay. I'd support a move to Mesolongi though. "Missolonghi" can be named in the lede as a popular/historical form. Constantine 08:53, 18 July 2011 (UTC)
Ankara - Angora:

According to Books Ngram Viewer, Ankara have been "common" name since circa 1940.

Thessaloniki - Thessalonica - Salonica

According to Books Ngram Viewer Thessaloniki have been "common" name since circa 1980.

Mumbai - Bombay

According to Books Ngram Viewer, Bombay is still "common" name. But history of discussion in Wikipedia on Mumbai/Bombay (Talk:Mumbai/Archive index) is long and complicated. Takabeg (talk) 09:34, 18 July 2011 (UTC)

Google books is no panacea for these things, as it does not distinguish context. This is not about the naming of a historical battle or event, but about an actual living site. To English-speakers, it may be known only through Byron, but that doesn't mean anything. Edirne is far better known as Adrianople because of the great battles fought there, Auschwitz is far better known than the village of Oświęcim, etc. We can keep the historical name for the sieges of the city, but for the modern place that people can search for on a map and actually visit, we should follow the transliteration. Constantine 09:47, 18 July 2011 (UTC)
If Missolongi had been only historical name of Missolongi, I shouldn't have requested moving.

I think that Missolongi was possibly "popular" name, but it was very popular and became common name in English language.

For example, those are modern usage of Missolonghi, Messolonghi, Mesolonghi.

"Mayor of Missolonghi/Mayor of Messolonghi/Meyor of Meolonghi" (sample no. 1)

If need, I will continue to research (sample no 2, 3, 4....). Our purpose is neither to push our own arguements nor to debate unproductively, but to find real common name in English language with Wikipedia:Identifying reliable sources. For now I don't think that Missolongi is only a historical name in English language. Thank you. Takabeg (talk) 12:29, 18 July 2011 (UTC)

I repeat: Google Books is not a panacea for such issues. How about 466,000 Ghits for Mesolongi and a similar number for Messolonghi versus 214,000 for Missolonghi? Clearly, there is no dominant form. Therefore if there's to be a move, let's go with the "systematic transliteration" that PMAnderson refers to above. Constantine 12:54, 18 July 2011 (UTC)
Transliteration is not Wikipedia practice, unless English speakers generally transliterate. See WP:COMMONNAME, which is policy. I should have said any of the half-dozen systems of transliteration from Modern Greek; none of them (as far as I know) represent σ by ss; but they do differ on the vowels. Angora is no longer common usage (except for felines), as the relevant ngram will show; Bombay may have ceased to be. They are strawmen; offering them is irresponsible. Septentrionalis PMAnderson 17:38, 18 July 2011 (UTC)
OK then, far be it from me to be "irresponsible". Nevertheless, if Bombay "may" have ceased to be the most common form despite solid Google Books evidence to the contrary, may I humbly venture to suggest that the same "may" be the case with Missolonghi? Per simple Google search (which includes news, tourist, etc sites possibly more relevant to a modern audience than accounts of a two-centuries-old siege) at least there is no clear-cut common name. Of course in books the historical form will tend to predominate: aside from the host of 19th-century publications, published sources are far more likely to treat the town in the context of Byron and the Turkish sieges than anything else. Constantine 19:49, 18 July 2011 (UTC)
It is not impossible that Mumbai should be moved; but it is the consistent usage of the New York Times, the BBC, and other major media. Can "Messolonghi" say as much? Septentrionalis PMAnderson 21:07, 18 July 2011 (UTC)
Indeed not, but I doubt anyone can conclusively prove this for any of the suggested alternatives, seeing as the town hasn't generated much news lately. I made such a search of major news sites out of curiosity, and found nothing or a handful of references, at best. I wouldn't really mind moving the page to "Missolonghi", but based on common usage at least, it can just as well stay where it is. The reason I stick with "Mesolongi" is because it is, let's face it, the form that is closest to the actual name of the town. "Missolonghi" reflects Italian phonology far more than Greek. Constantine 21:31, 18 July 2011 (UTC)
So does Corfu. We are writing English, not Demotic. Septentrionalis PMAnderson 22:52, 18 July 2011 (UTC)

(unindent) You brought up the "ss" and whole transliteration thing, that is what I commented on. As for Corfu, it is by any definition the most common name. There is clearly no such clear favourite with Messolonghi, which means that we must choose based on other criteria. I suggest that a close reflection of the actual name is a sensible criterion. Otherwise might I also suggest moving Zakynthos to Zante and Lefkada to Santa Maura, since they too (and doubtlessly many others) are more common in Google Books as well as historically popular. Constantine 01:26, 19 July 2011 (UTC)

In short, there is nothing wrong with historical forms, nor is there anything wrong with transliterated names, there are examples and counter-examples aplenty for each. The issue is having a usable and practical name that is relevant to modern usage, not 19th-century usage. Constantine 01:42, 19 July 2011 (UTC)

How do you think of GeoNames Search ? In the page Talk:Vank, Martakert one user used this search engine. According to GeoNames, Mesolóngion is approved, Mesolónghi, Mesolóngi, Messolóngi, Missolonghi are variant names. Takabeg (talk) 08:34, 19 July 2011 (UTC)
See WP:Naming conventions (geographic names)#BGN. All the BGN's Approved names are is their (somewhat arbitrary) choice of a systematic transliteration. Septentrionalis PMAnderson 17:11, 19 July 2011 (UTC)
  • Question - Does the town's notability come primarily from being the site of two famous sieges in the 1820s, or from being a town in modern Greece? It would seem that this may inform our decision here. -GTBacchus(talk) 00:38, 25 July 2011 (UTC)
  • Support. As noted here, the proposed title is the most common historical spelling and maintains a plurality, if not majority, of usage to the present day. —  AjaxSmack  01:57, 25 July 2011 (UTC)
The above discussion is preserved as an archive of a requested move. Please do not modify it. Subsequent comments should be made in a new section on this talk page. No further edits should be made to this section.

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