Talk:Provinces of Mongolia

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I will move all to X Prefecture for now,

  1. because most of the subnational entities in other countries use english words (it can be debated wether aymag is an english term)
  2. to achieve consistent use with historical Outer Mongolia Aymags, currently labeled, e.g. "Chechen Khan Ayimagh" not X Aymag.

see Wikipedia:WikiProject_Subnational entities/Naming

Tobias Conradi 15:37, 11 Mar 2005 (UTC)

from User_talk:Tobias Conradi

Hi Tobias,

Recently you moved all articles about Mongolian aymags from ___ aymag to ___ Prefecture. However, I believe the standard translation of "aymag" used is "province". Both the CIA factbook and Statoids use this translation.

So do you think it's alright if I moved all of the aymag articles to ___ Province? Please let me know about any concerns or objections that you have.

Thanks -- ran (talk) 17:07, Mar 11, 2005 (UTC)

  1. how would you call the historical units of Mongolia (Outer Mongolia)? At that time Outer Mongolia (nowadays state of Mongolia) was itself a province.
  2. statoids is one person
  3. prefecture is also used in a lot of other countries, so it is not that bad english.
  4. a lot of redirects exist, so it is more to edit then one might think (at least I was surprised ;-))
Tobias Conradi 17:15, 11 Mar 2005 (UTC)

But the CIA factbook certainly isn't one person. Also, certain common translations are arrived at for countries and you can't change them: Japan has prefectures, for example, and you can't just call them something else, like provinces, or states. (And I don't mind spending some time redirecting all the articles.. it wouldn't take that long ;) )

Mongolia wasn't a province, btw. It was more of a "territory", controlled by a military governor. The only provinces of the Manchu Empire were those in China proper (if you don't count the aymags of Mongolia, of course ;) )-- ran (talk) 17:29, Mar 11, 2005 (UTC)

Then at first correct:
Mongolia is divided into 21 aymags or provinces. Aimaq (also spelled aimag, and aimak) is the Mongolian word for province. Because Mongolia was a province of China though, it was divided into aimaqs (prefectures of the province of Outer Mongolia). Ths system was continued with even when independence was gained.
would have saved lot of time, if this would have been correct before. As well it was said on one page aymag is the mongolian term for prefecture.
it seems you know more about this than me :-) nevertheless maybe wait a little. and then: fun editing it. (last week I moved a lot, puuh the worst were the database errors, that nearly doubled the time I spent on moving.
best regards Tobias Conradi 17:37, 11 Mar 2005 (UTC)

Okay, I'll edit it later today (UTC-5) -- ran (talk) 17:42, Mar 11, 2005 (UTC)

I took back my "wait request". - just had edit conflict with you:
I think, if you are sure, and it is consistent with Manchu Empire / Qing Dynasty and consistent with related articles content and you also edit Outer Mongolia and Mongolia .... got for it! :-) Tobias Conradi 17:45, 11 Mar 2005 (UTC)
inconsistent CIA:
the wilaya are translated as province in other countries, so to call mintaqah the same is not that good. as far as i rememberat least one country has wilaya and mintaqah Tobias Conradi 18:15, 11 Mar 2005 (UTC)

I think as long as there's consistency within each country then we should be fine. For example, the "commanderies" of ancient China, "districts" of Japan and "counties" of Korea are all translations of the same word: 郡. In Chinese, Japanese and Korean the same term is used to refer to all three. But that doesn't mean we can switch them around in English. -- ran (talk) 19:52, Mar 11, 2005 (UTC)

(from User_talk:Tobias Conradi) Hi Tobias, do you want to help me out and fix some of the redirects going to the Mongolian aymag pages? -- ran (talk) 07:33, Mar 12, 2005 (UTC)

didn't you say: ...I don't mind spending some time redirecting all the articles.. it wouldn't take that long ;) ? ;-)
I wasn't exactly expecting 4-6 redirects per page.
I fixed the re-redirects on the last aymags. But as stated above, without fixing the related articles the aymag stuff is inconsistent now. See: Outer Mongolia, Provinces of Mongolia I would not like to edit it, because I do not know about it.
BTW the way the sums (what is that?) are wikified they look like cities. Tobias Conradi 19:30, 12 Mar 2005 (UTC)
Thanks for your help. Sums are something like counties, I believe. But I'm not sure about it's "official" English translation. -- ran (talk) 07:32, Mar 13, 2005 (UTC)
I did not thank you yet, for what you wrote about 郡 - I would have liked to be different ;-) (i.e. no differences in translation). For the governorates of Iraq (wilaya) I moved from province to governorate, like in other arab countries. In that case it is also the official Iraqi translation, so I had government on my side. What about making Outer Mongolia and Provinces of Mongolia consistent with the move from prefecture->province that you carried out? Tobias Conradi 17:13, 13 Mar 2005 (UTC)

It's a bit of a pain when the same thing has a few different names depending on which part of history you're talking about. Take a look at county of China (xian) and zhou (political division). Not only do they have several different translations depending on what kind of literature you're reading, they both use the term "prefecture" in a historical context, which is also used in the modern context to refer to another administrative division of China, the prefecture of China. (diqu)

When this happens I guess we'll have to use our discretion. What do you think should be done with the prefectures of Mongolia? Are they actually referred to that way in a historical context? -- ran (talk) 19:27, Mar 13, 2005 (UTC)

  1. Provinces of Mongolia - to find inconsistency search this talk page for "Then at first correct"
  2. Outer Mongolia - I know nothing about this. But didn't you say that the only provinces china had, outside of china proper, were the aymags? Then prefecture would be wrong(?).
    1. one more "It consisted of the following four prefectures (ayimagh)" did the chinese use aymag?
Tobias Conradi 23:15, 13 Mar 2005 (UTC)
But didn't you say that the only provinces china had, outside of china proper, were the aymags? — I said the only provinces (sheng) the Qing Dynasty had were in China proper. The Qing Dynasty also had aymags in Mongolia. The provinces of China (sheng) were not the same at all as the aymags of Mongolia.
-- ran (talk) 00:48, Mar 14, 2005 (UTC)

Thanks for this clarification.

But what really takes my nerves, that you are not correcting the inconsistency you created. Because Mongolia was a province of China though, it was divided into aimaqs (prefectures of the province of Outer Mongolia). This system was continued with even when independence was gained.

I would like to do it, but I do not know what Mongolia was, beside a special territory. And maybe it can also be clarified whether whole Mongolia or or only Outer Mongolia or both Mongolias were special territorries with adding the chinese words for it.

I really dislike inconsistency because they can cost people lot of time, e.g. me, who moved the aymags to prefectures because of this wrong statement. If it will be there some more time I am going to delete this info completly. Tobias Conradi 01:59, 14 Mar 2005 (UTC)

There was never a "province of Outer Mongolia". There was a land called Outer Mongolia, overseen by a general, divided into ayimaghs and banners. This was different from China proper with its provinces, prefectures, departments, and counties.
Banner (Inner Mongolia) also mentions ayimaghs.
I'm sorry that I didn't correct the statement about the "province of Outer Mongolia", I didn't see it when I was editing the article earlier. -- ran (talk) 04:14, Mar 15, 2005 (UTC)

... :-) now I can sleep better ;-) You solved it in a good way, not saying anything about status, beside domination. I moved all to Category:Provinces of Mongolia. I wonder when we will move back to local names and transliteration ? I started a template Template:Subnational_entity, I will certainly have a look on chinese entities, because it seems some people really put afford in organizing the series there. BTW the only articles that use singular are "county of china" and not plural like "provinces of someland". Because WP usually puts stuff in singular this seems to be the right way. Tobias Conradi 04:33, 15 Mar 2005 (UTC)


from User_talk:Tobias Conradi Tobias Conradi (Talk) 21:23, 20 October 2006 (UTC)

Hey Tobias, I was just wondering why you moved the article of Aymguud of Mongolia to Provinces of Mongolia? The rest of the articles do not cross-reference the use of 'province' - nor is it an overall term. Aymag (singular, or "aymguud" for plural) is the proper terminology and is fully acceptable to use within Wiki rules (see the use of "oblast" with the Administrative divisions of Ukraine. I do not necessarily contest this move, however, I feel that if this is to stay as such you must alter the related articles to reflect the use of 'province' (with proper reference to 'aymug'). Thanks! Rarelibra 20:56, 20 October 2006 (UTC)

  1. I reverted a copy paste move.
  2. currently, in english WP english terms are used. Only exceptions: Russia, where translations is difficult. And yes Ukraine, don't know why.
  3. Even Russian articles do not use native plurals, but say "Oblasts of Russia".

Tobias Conradi (Talk) 21:26, 20 October 2006 (UTC)

Tobias - these are technically not called translations, they are transliterations (due to the different alphabet use). In the case where there isn't a translation of sorts (like provincia to province), sometimes it is best to use the local (or unique) version. If Aymguud doesn't seem correct, then Aymug or its equivalent should be used (in your example of the Russian oblasts). The statoids quote above is one that I agree doesn't hold water - I have personally found that, at times, statoids data is old or incorrect. A better reference is the use by the UN (for official use) or CIA (for semi-translated). I just think it's proper to use a correct term rather than one that is 'perceived' to be correct. But so is the spirit of Wiki - to find the 'consensus'. Rarelibra 14:52, 21 October 2006 (UTC)

Why you, RareLibra, are transliterating plural form, but not singular? Do you believe usual wikireader knows mongolian grammar? Do you know mongolian grammar? And then why you are creating new mongolian word "sumuud"? In Mongolian Wiki plural form of "sum" is "Сумд" ("sumd" in transliteration). Even native mongolians when they are writing in English use English grammar instead of Mongolian (no sumuud and aymguud). It is not a good idea to use foreign grammar, to my opinion. Bogomolov.PL 16:00, 29 January 2007 (UTC)

I am no expert on Mongolia. I contribute to Wikipedia where there is missing information - in this case, the 2nd administrative level of Mongolia. When I first created the page, it read "Somon of Mongolia", based on the [subnational entity page where I saw the plural was supposed to be "somon". If you look at, he lists the plural as "soums" or "sooms" or "sums". I was contacted by someone on my talk page about the fact that the word "somon" was incorrect, and that "sumuud" is correct. This is why I then corrected it to show "sumuud" instead of "somon". As far as the singular form, the singular form is still "sum".
Do I know Mongolian grammar? Of course not - or I would annotate such on my user page. You state the plural form of "sum" is "Сумд", but the subnational entity page states it as "Сумууд" or "Sumuud". So if you are giving me a hard time for using the plural term listed on the English wiki subnational entity article, I would ask why you do not go there first to correct it? If there are errors, please state this so we can go about correcting this. Am I understanding that you are saying the correct transliterated plural of "sum" to be "sumd"? Or is it just "sums"? And the correct transliterted plural of "aymag" to be "Aymd"? Or is that also just "Ayms"?
Note that also states that the next level of administration (below the sumuud) are "bags" (rural) and "horoos" (urban). If this is not correct, we can find the correct word/translation/transliteration to use... once I work on obtaining map information for that level of administration. Rarelibra 16:38, 29 January 2007 (UTC)
Actually, both forms "Sumuud" and "Sumd" are correct and used next to each other, with the former being more regular as far as I understand the systematics of the grammar. In everyday talk even "Sumguud" is used, although that's not technically correct. I was responsible for the previous "Somon", which is not Mongolian but Russian grammar (and used in the russian oblasts Buryatia and Tuva). When I found out my error, I tried to start a discussion about which form to use, but didn't see any echo. Since the correct mongolian plural "Aimguud" was already in use, Rarelibra (I think) then started to change "Somon" to "Sumuud" as well in some articles, and I followed to fix the rest.
This means that the current titles are technically correct, but they may or may not be the forms we want to use. If there really is a standard (guideline?) to use english plurals, then we can of course switch to Aymags, Sums, and Bags (the mongolian plural of "Bag" is "Baga", btw.) In the cities there are Duregs and Horoos, not sure about the mongolian plural forms there. I recently updated the relevant entry here, but it's still formally inconsistent. --Latebird 17:37, 29 January 2007 (UTC)
Is it so critically for English Wiki which mongolian plural form is correct? This question belongs to Mongolians. Only Mongolians will find the correct definition, or not - it will be Mongolian grammar problem. My intention is to use in Enlish language native (English!) grammar. Or we will use "goviyn nature" instead of "govi nature" (suffix "iyn" creates adjective form from substantive) Bogomolov.PL 07:32, 30 January 2007 (UTC)
The unfortunate part that you will run into on Wikipedia is that it will not be a Mongolian grammar problem. It will be what the English trend or popularity to call it is. Do not attempt to say that only Mongolians can find a 'correct definition' - that would be like saying that only native English speakers can contribute to English wiki (just plain nonsense). We are all here to find a correct solution together. Rarelibra 13:56, 30 January 2007 (UTC)
My standpoint is -

1. grammar is concrete language part (Mongolian, English, Polish etc)

2. certain language uses only its grammar - in English is not in use Mongolian or Polish suffixes: znamię (birthmark)singular; znamiona (birthmarks)plural. Birthmarkona - it is not correct in English.

3. When instead of provinces we are using aymag and when county we are naming sum - from this time English vocabulary has two mongolian origin words more (loan words, adoptions). Adoptions are in use in English text using English grammar (and vice versa: in Polish language are English origin adoptions declined using Polish grammar rules - komputer (computer)singular; komputery (computers)plural).

4. Very useful is in encyclopaedia (adoption!) in parentheses (adoption!) note Mongolian plural form. But (under tradition) foreign words are adopted in singular form: pogrom (sing.)from Russian, not pogromy (plural).

5. If we are not speakers of Mongolian we are not competent to decide what Mongolian grammar form is correct. But this polymophism we need only to note in parentheses.

Bogomolov.PL 10:17, 31 January 2007 (UTC)

Bogomolov - no offense, but you are not making sense. Focus on the task at hand - are you updated the sum boundaries? You mentioned you have a source map, correct? Do you need any assistance with this? Let me know. Thanks. Rarelibra 14:07, 31 January 2007 (UTC)

Yes, mission complete. 16-color PNG from vectorized map (MicroStation), transformed from cone projection(source) to Mercator with true scales at 48 parallel and true northigs along meridians. All rasters have same scale (if sb wants - can collect and mosaic, mb it will be helpful add BL crosses?). General sums map is of course in two versions - every sum painted with different color (6 colors, no adjacent sums filled with the same color), blue lakes and black borders - and b/w outline map. No offence, but sumuud and aymguud are not acceptable in any language exept Mongolian. Why you pretend that Wikipedia article naming question has no sens? Tylko staram się panu(czy pani) wyperswadować istotność tej kwestii, bo pan(pani) tworzy w Wikipedii artykuły z niewyłumaczalnymi z każdego punktu widzenia nazwami, uporczywie używa tych neologizmów w tekstach Wikipedii. To nie wydaje się kwestją czysto lingwistyczną, to się tyczy rzeczy bardzo a to bardzo istotnych - zasad tworzenia Wikipedii. Gdy wytaczam argumenty, moim zdaniem sensowne, co słyszę od autora(autorki) aymguudów - odczep się pan, nie zawracaj głowy. Niestety, używanie w języku angelskim angelskiej gramatyki uważam za słuszne. Czy argumentów z pana(pani) strony zabrakło? Nie wierzę w to, bo nie wierzę by pan (pani) nie rozważał podejmowanych decyzji Bogomolov.PL 07:19, 1 February 2007 (UTC)

Bogomolov, I hope you aren't trying to make a point writing in polish here?

Latebird - Bogomolov wrote in Polish because he tried to hide his words. Maybe he didn't notice that I speak Polish. He is saying that he cannot argue about topics/aspects with me because I do not know the rules for creating wikipedia. He also states that I do not know the names, and that my arguments do not make sense, and he is ordering me not to do this.

Bogomolov - now I am going to tell you two things. First, if you claim expertise in the area of Mongolian maps and names, SHARE IT to improve the article (with the proper references and sources, of course). Second, do not simply offer up criticisms or insults ... because no matter what language you attempt to do so, you are still in violation of wikipedia rules, and you can very quickly be banned because of this. Do you understand what I am saying? If you wish to converse in your language, by all means I can read it and translate it. But if you turn to insults and such, you are not doing the article or wikipedia any good. Just so you know, Bogomolov, that we have a little history with this article here. If your input is simply from looking at a couple of maps and seeing names, that is one thing. If you come at us with proper sources of names (and boundaries), etc. looking to help correct things, that is another thing. If you notice how Latebird approached the topic, he notified me of errors and offered up possibilities to work at correcting the errors (and improving the article). There were not insults or words exchanged between us, other than words to search for finding the corrections for the article. You state that you have created new maps with the correct borders/boundaries for the Sumuud... do you wish to post those maps to update the maps for the Sumuud? If so, let's get it done and improve the article. If you want me to do the updates with the maps I already have in place, then let me know where we can exchange the updated information you have. If you are merely attempting to criticize the name of Aymguud and Sumuud... what is your suggestion for such names, for the proper transliteration to English? Don't get hung up with statements about how 'only Mongolians' can offer input. This is English Wikipedia, and there are well-knowledged individuals here that can offer up solutions on various topics. So if we follow along the same lines of such logic, you yourself (being native Polish) cannot offer any input on the topic, either. So this is what I mean by "not making sense". Start offering up solutions and sources. Thanks! Rarelibra 15:00, 1 February 2007 (UTC)

Back to the topic at hand: I'm very glad that we'll get correct maps now. Rarelibra was unlucky to rely on outdated material, but he still gets the honor of having started the process. Any chance that you could produce SVG files from MicroStation? This is the optimal format for this type of map on WP, and would make it a lot easier to translate them to other languages without losing quality or investing a lot of work. Unfortunately (because it's duplicated work), de:User:Yaan has just corrected the map for Hovsgol manually in the german language Wikipedia, although still untranslated. If nothing else, it may serve for you to compare if you're working with the same information...
Treating Aymag and Sum as "loan words" with english grammar is one possible solution that does make sense. The relevant Wikipedia:Naming conventions (plurals) don't explicitly talk about this situation, but the goal should be not to confuse readers more than necessary.--Latebird 13:21, 1 February 2007 (UTC)
I'm not native Polish, I was trying communicate with Rarelibra using this language. My mistake.

In personal data Rarelibra clame one of his languages Polish. For me more easy to explain my opinion not in English, but in Polish, sorry. I didn't want to hide, but better explain my opinion. Dear Latebird, I will try to translate in my poor English what I'd said in Polish: "I am only trying to convince you of this question importance, because you are creating in Wikipedia articles from every point of view with nontraslateable names, consistently use this neologisms in Wikipedia texts. This is not only lingustic question, but relates very important things - principles of Wikipedia creation. When I reason my opinion with arguments, in my judgment, sensible, what I here wrom aymguud author side - disengage me, stop importune me. Don't you have arguments? I am sure you have, because I am sure you are making decisions only after serious reflection." End of translation. Feel the difference. My intention is to achieve consensus, what means I'm ready for my opinion changing if strong arguments will come from Rarelibra side. That is why I'm not changing aymguud and sumuud into aymags and sums - this act will be against Wikipedia consensus principles, isn't it? I am not any Wikihooligan, I just want to here other side arguments, but... You whant ban me? You don't like my opinion - discuss with me, this is discussion page. This is my understanding of Wiki principles. Imagine - I'm changing aymguud into aymags, but Rarelibra switch them back and so on. Only when we will be able to find consensus, and only if this decision will differ from aymguud/sumuud changes in Wiki are possible. Until this moment everything stays in present form.

About "only Mongolians". As you remember, I noted that in Mongolian Wiki sums are named sumd, not sumuud. I never say - I know truth, because only my opinion is true. I'm putting questions only. If several plural forms are acceptable - OK. But not me, not you will decide what form is correct in Mongolian language. Here, in English Wiki we can leave this problem (mb for Mongolians it is not any problem?) in parenthesis. I think it is much better use wery short and well known English suffix for plurals, but not Mongolian (not well known for Nonmongolians).

About "somon". Somon is singular form in Russian.

About SVG maps in MicroStation. I don't know this conversion in MS, but mb it will be in new XM version? If sb knows how to create SVG from DGN - help us.

Hövsgöl aymag map - only Chandmani-Öndör (Чандмань-Өндөр) transliteration had lost "ь" (transliterated officially "ǐ", but on Rarelibra and my maps "i"). My maps is possible have same type errors. I just put files into Wiki Mongolia_Arhangay_2005_sum.png etc for all aymags Bogomolov.PL 10:38, 2 February 2007 (UTC)

God, this is frustrating. Bogomolov... do you understand what I am saying? I don't think so. I am ASKING you ... WHAT IS THE CORRECT TERMINOLOGY (both singular and plural) FOR THE AYMAG AND SUM IN ENGLISH? You keep trying to correct it... so what is the correct terminology? Tell us, provide a source, and we will correct it - and move the articles to the proper form. We are not trying to keep you from edits... we are asking you to clarify... As for the maps, if you are creating them in Microstation, if you cannot do it in SVG format, simply create them in PNG. Or can you send me the raw files in Microstation format? I can quickly translate them to MapInfo and update the maps. Would this be possible? Thank you! Rarelibra 14:25, 2 February 2007 (UTC)
Lemme jump in with a suggestion: why not use "Province" and "District" respectively, and mention the native terms (аймаг and сум) the first time in the article where they're mentioned? Besides, Mongolian Goverment seems to use the word "district" [1] themselves. While I don't particularly like overly broad application of WP:UE guideline, this seems like a natural choice, and it's the format most other countries follow (i.e. translate their subdivision terms into the most appropriate English ones (cf. Districts of Serbia, States of Germany), except when the native term already had a certain prominence in English (Oblasts of Russia, Voivodeships of Poland). Compare List of country subdivisions. Duja 14:25, 7 February 2007 (UTC)
Duja - when properly referenced as a subnational entity, it is preferred to use the correct entity name, instead of an 'assumed' form (see the use of raion in the Ukraine, for example). I would rather use the native transliterated form, and we seemed to have agreed on using Aymags of Mongolia and Sums of Mongolia. I guess we could always put this up for a vote. Rarelibra 14:45, 7 February 2007 (UTC)
Could you please point me to the relevant guideline that says "it is preferred to use the correct entity name"? I've never thought I'd pull WP:UE myself in the discussion, but there's always the first time :-). I'd always support (and have supported) "correct entity name" in proper names such as Mumbai/Bombay, Gdańsk/Danzig, Jaromír Jágr/Jaromir Jagr, but applying it to terms which have proper English translation/equivalent seems like overdoing it. I'm talking about benefit to the reader: when I see "Arhangay Province" or "Whatever district" I'd get a fairly good idea what's that, but not when I see something utterly unfamiliar such as "Arhangay aymag" or "sum". Plus, there is an apparent problem with plurals and grammar. If I wrote the guideline about subnational entities, it would read "use the English form which is used by the country government in English texts". I know that's the case with e.g. Voivodeships in Poland, and I assume it's also the case with Russian Oblasts, to name a few. Browse a bit through subcats of Category:Subdivisions_by_country to see for yourself. Duja 09:29, 8 February 2007 (UTC)
Mongolian authorities always use "Aymag" in english language text, and never "Province". There's quite a number of countries where the subdivisions are listed under some local name, of which many (eg. arrondissements, departments, cantons, woredas, fraziones, barangays, voivodeships, oblasts, okrugs, krais, comarcas, etc.) have no good english language equivalent. So your argument, as far as I understand it, is not entirely consistent, and seems to overstretch WP:UE a bit beyond its intendet purpose. There is no actual problem with grammar, as you'll find if you read the discussion on "Plural forms" below. --Latebird 11:57, 8 February 2007 (UTC)
I admit I came to this debate straight from Mars (from WP:CYR talk page actually) and that I'm not versed well with the Mongolinan issues; I just felt compelled to drop my 2c. in any case, the bottom line of WP:UE is prefer English words (emphasis mine). I don't know enough how well aymag corresponds to more familiar notion of province. The "rule of thumb" (local government usage) is only mine, (although I think it's commonsense enough). OK, if you could demonstrate that aymag and sum are actually used words in English texts (I guess there won't be much mention in texts from English-speaking countries?), I'm fine with it. Duja 12:34, 8 February 2007 (UTC)
Input from Mars is always welcome! According to Google, and trying to filter out WP clones, it seems that in english language texts "Aymag" is used more often than "Province" (compare [2] vs. [3]). I would expect printed publications to show a similar distribution. For what it's worth, Aymag has its semantical origin in the word for "tribe", which is quite different to the notion of "subordinate territory" (provincia) in ancient rome, so one is not really a translation of the other. It also seems that most other language versions use a transcription of the mongolian term. --Latebird 16:31, 8 February 2007 (UTC)

Rarelibra, I think you're the only native english speaker here, so maybe you need to afford some patience with potential misunderstandings. Let's just all assume good faith and not jump to conclusions too quickly. Btw: Since we actually have two seperate topics here, I'll create two new subtitles to make the discussion easier to follow. --Latebird 16:06, 2 February 2007 (UTC)

Plural forms[edit]

As far as I can tell, the relevant guidelines don't say anything about foreign language plurals, so they were probably not meant to happen. In any case, and after all the weird variations we had in the recent past (partly due to my fault), I guess the least confusing option should be considered.

Does anyone have arguments against using the english forms Aymag/Aymags and Sum/Sums? If not, then I suggest we use those. --Latebird 16:11, 2 February 2007 (UTC)

That is my whole point from the start. We keep asking the question, what are the proper forms, and then the answer has no suggestions or actualities of the sort. We sit here going back and forth where I am asking the question, then Bogomolov points the finger and says "hey, that is incorrect". If Aymag/Aymags and Sum/Sums is the way to go, let's do it. Rarelibra 16:57, 2 February 2007 (UTC)
Mongolians in English versions of official texts are using English suffixes (Statistic office). More actual question is what transliteration we have to use? Rarelibra and me are using Mongolian map transliteration system
Х - h;
У - u;
й,ы - y;
Ө - Ö;
Ү - Ü;
Э - e;
Е - ye;
Я - ya;
ж - j;
ь - ǐ;
и - i;
ч - ch;
л - l;
м - m;
н - n;
п - p;
р - r;
с - s;
ц - ts;
Б - b;
В - v;
г - g;
д - d;
ё - yo;
з - z;
к - k;
т - t;
ш - sh.
This system does not correspond to other one (, where are no umlauts (Ö,Ü), sum is written soum, aymag is written aimag, bag - bagh, horoo - khoroo etc. Both systems are different from shown in Bogomolov.PL 10:25, 5 February 2007 (UTC)

Ok, so at least we three agree on using english plural forms. Let's wait a few days to see if there are any other voices, and then change all the names accordingly.

I'm starting a new subheading for the transliteration issue. --Latebird 11:00, 5 February 2007 (UTC)

Sum maps[edit]

If at all possible, I would strongly prefer SVG maps, even if it takes a few days longer to figure out the best way of creating them. Maybe one of you will find a tool here that works with what you already have available.

Bogomolov has pointed me to a sample of what he created: Image:Mongolia_Arhangay_2005_sum.png. I would like to continue that discussion here, so that we may get more diverse input. As far as I can tell, the result is correct, at least the names all correspond to the lists that I have. As to the spelling, in [4], "Ögiy nuur" and "Ih tamir" are written as two words each, which may or may not be better. Then there's a chance that a future WP naming convention for Mongolian will define "Х" as "kh" (current practise varies randomly between "h" and "kh"), but that shouldn't be a difficult change if/once it happens.

Graphically, I'd prefer softer colors (maybe except for the lakes), as recommended by Wikipedia_talk:WikiProject_Maps. The strong colors can make the text hard to read. Would it be hard to remove the sum boundaries and settlement locations in the surrounding aymags? They make the whole thing look a bit nervous. The boundaries between surrounding aymags (and national boundaries, where relevant) should stay, though. Maybe it would even be useful to label the neighbour aymags, as Yaan has done in his attempt. I think it is ok to leave the country map insert away. After all, we already have maps that show where each aymag is located, and those are included in the respective articles as well. --Latebird 16:40, 2 February 2007 (UTC)

Latebird - I agree the colors need to be changed (that is why I use a pastel range), and the outside borders and settlement locations need to be dropped. Both attempts look just fine (though the text angles in the one that Yaan did are all over the place and do not follow any standard convention). If someone cannot do the colors, etc. that is what I am saying the whole time - I have the software and the time to burn through this and get the updates completed. I can provide the .png files back to someone who can then turn them into SVG. ? Rarelibra 16:56, 2 February 2007 (UTC)

SVG is a vector format. If we go this way, then you don't want to create PNGs first. Any intermediate formats should be vector based as well (eg. DXF). --Latebird 17:52, 2 February 2007 (UTC)

I'm not going to have this conversation. Everyone says "SVG! SVG!" when those of us (like myself) use software that doesn't convert/save/utilize SVG format. These are not fly-by-night cheapo software packages, these are full-blown mapping systems. So the maps I continue to create will be PNG... and I will look for something that will convert from PNG to SVG. It's just that way. Microstation is the same (as the MapInfo I use). So unless you have some kind of suggestions... ? Rarelibra 18:02, 2 February 2007 (UTC)

You don't want to convert from one vector format (MapInfo/MicroStation) to another vector format (SVG) by going through an intermediate raster format (PNG). That would destroy all the advantages of using a "full blown mapping system" in the first place, as far as the quality of the result is concerned. --Latebird 19:53, 2 February 2007 (UTC)

Do you understand that the mapping software doesn't have an option? Rarelibra 20:00, 2 February 2007 (UTC)

Any decent mapping software can export a variety of vector formats. Now we just need to find one where we then have a (fully vector based) path to SVG. There are probably short and expensive paths, and longer ones with free tools. Maybe we should ask the mapping portal or the folks on Commons if anyone has used this specific combination before. --Latebird 20:26, 2 February 2007 (UTC)

I'd pastellized colors and will post example (replacing Mongolia_Govi-Altay_sum.png). Is it enough pastel? And one more question. What all Mongolia sum map resolution you prefere? If the same resolution as aymag maps - it is 10150x5100 pixels and 549 KB, but... it is nice. Version 5074x2567 has 242 KB. I mean colored maps with sum names. Binary map (borders and lakes, no sum centers and names) is 311 KB. If difference in KB is so small - color with names is better? Bogomolov.PL 15:41, 5 February 2007 (UTC)

The new colors look nice. If we create SVG maps, then the resolution is dynamic at constant (small) file size. It seems that Rarelibra has found a way to create SVG maps from MapInfo. Maybe you can cooperate for him to process your data this way? About that Govi-Altay map: The territory around the capital has a very strange shape. Is that actually what the city administrates, or in which aymag is the capital located geographically? --Latebird 17:22, 5 February 2007 (UTC)

I agree, the pastels look great. Let me know if you need any help. Rarelibra 17:57, 5 February 2007 (UTC)

About sum division. Aymag is divided into aymag center and sums. Sum and sum center obligatory have the same name. Very frequently sum center is single settlement in it and rest of population is nomadic only registrated in sum center. Besides sum center in sum are possible bag settlements, but a lot of them are seasonally populated (if exist). There are settlements wich are not bags. Usually only sum center has post-office, school, hospital, set of shops, temple. Sum is not only administrative division, but the way to manage pastures - main economy resource. Bags are sum pastures subdivisions. Sum population is officially rural. Urban population in Mongolia is: Ulaanbaatar municipality population and all aymag centers. So, to my opinion, if aymag center is on the territory of sum with its own sum center, this aymag center have to be excluded from surrounding sum. Uvs, Govi-Altay, Orhon, Dundgovi, Dornogovi and Govi-Sumber aymag centers are sum centers too. What with them? Does surronding sum have own administration located in the city, or it has no own administration, but it is rural part of city administrated territory? Bogomolov.PL 08:19, 6 February 2007 (UTC)

Latebird - Ihtamir and Ögiynuur are written as one word (without hyphen too) in all avaliable for me Mongolian maps of Mongolia (Road map 1:2,5 mln in English, Авто замын атлас 1:1 mln, Administrative map 1:2,5 mln in mongolian). Really, all this maps are made by the same cartographer team, I suspect. They introduced principle: 1) not in two words (only hyphen is possible); 2) sum and sum center are namesakes. Thank you for a good link, I can add an other one where is administrative map of Arhangay aymag 1,5 mln scale - almost all sum centers have their own names different from sum names. On Russian military maps (1973) all sum centers of Arhangay aymag have names of actual sum (but Их-Тамир and Угий-Нур). Bogomolov.PL 07:43, 7 February 2007 (UTC)

I've never heard of a sum center having a different name than the sum.

That map of Arhangay looks very strange. In the Tsetserleg sum, they have two seperate settlements called Hujirt. In the Hairhan sum, there is a place named Hairhan, but the red dot is placed elsewhere. The Tsahir sum has no red dot at all, but a small dot at the border to Tariat is given two names (one of them Tsahir). The name Jargalant appears at least three times, two of them purportedly a sum center, but not in the Jargalant sum... I don't think I would trust this particular map as a reliable source, even if some local webmaster may have thought it was the best he could find.

Bogomolov, have you received a copy of the map that de:Benutzer:Hangarid has? It seems to include the most current version of the official names, which we could use to decide about which names are one or two words. --Latebird 10:55, 7 February 2007 (UTC)

Actually, a lot of sum center's names are officially different from that of their sum. In real life, few (local) people use them, but they are displayed on more detailed maps and can sometimes lead to confusion on bigger maps or in GPS software. For example, in Hövsgöl Hanh might be called Turta, Alag-Erdene's center is called Manhan IIRC, and Bürentogtoh's center has some distinct name that I don't remember (It's not Bürenhaan. suggests it might be Bayan, but the location seems to far south. From what I have heard, this might be the old location that was left somewhere in the 60s or 50s. The correct location is displayed under yet another name at, even though I've slept there once and spent some days in the area. Those are just the examples I remember without looking into a map. I read somewhere (without source) this is all a result of some administrative reform in the 70s.

re. double and triple names, I think this might be a common problem when dealing with Mongolian maps. I think Hövsgöl has 3-4 mountains called Ih Uuls, for example. Unless someone can come up with a definite source, I'd just ignore the sum center's names, since they are pretty irrelevant anyway. I think Hövsgöl's center Mörön is a sum, too, albeit a rather small one. Or maybe it was one some years ago. Yaan 11:43, 8 February 2007 (UTC)

I just had a look at Bogomolov's Hövsgöl map ( ). It looks great, esp. the Sangiin Dalai nuur, but there are two minor issues: first it's Tsagaannuur and Tsagaan-Uul, and then Mörön is officially a small sum with a slightly (just a little) greater area than covered by the black star. Third, one might think of including Hatgal, since it's apparently an administrative division on the same level as the sumuud. As for the sum centers, their names are probably even more irrelevant than I mentioned previously, so I'm all for omitting the names. Yaan, 20:15, 8 February 2007 (UTC)

With Tsagaan-Uul and Tsagaannuur it is my sin - I just fixed this error (Tsagaan - "White" with double "a" always). Thank you, Yaan!

Latebird - I'm finising maps correction (pastel colors, removing neighbouring aymags sum boundaries and centers). I'm looking for the ways to converte to SVG. May be Rarelibra will be successful, I sent him MapInfo tabs with sum bounaries and lakes - this makes possible to create outline map for all Mongolia.

Yaan- Mörön can not be any sum: sums are always rural units, but aymag centers are always urban (this is Statistic Office position). Sum is usually former socialist agriculture enterprise headquarters and still is grazeland management unit. And does aymag center fulfil this characteristic attributes? I'd mentioned in discussion that , to my opinion, aymags need to be excluded from surrounding sums. But it doesn not mean aymags will become sum this way. Hatgal - good question. In Авто замын атлас 2005 it is shown by the sum sign, but on adminisrative map it is noted like "other settlement". Usually this sign is used for former sum centers (just lost sum status). Anyway if Hatgal is sum - i have no borders for it. It is very possible this town has post office, grocery stores, gas station etc. I was in 2005 and 2006 in Bayantooroy willage in North Gobi oazis - all infrastructure was present, even house with banner (usually - "сумын дарга" office). But on administrative map - nothing. In Mongolian Wiki this willage name is in brackets, first is the name Цогт (80 km from Gobi desert to the Mongol-Altay tops), like it is on administrative map. Bogomolov.PL 09:21, 9 February 2007 (UTC)

Latebird - I didn't received any maps, but if you know how (verification is good idea) - tell me.

Yaan - a lot of sum centers are noted on maps in wrong places. Sum center can move - it happens (even aymag centers moved). But very possible are map mistakes/distorsions. Guchin-Us sum center (Övörhangay aymag) shift is 15 km. Bogomolov.PL 09:46, 9 February 2007 (UTC)

I think Mörön is nominally a sum, just much smaller (area-wise) than the other sums. Unfortunately I can't go there any time soon and make a picture of what the plaque at the town hall says, but I think (not at home now) that the Hövsgöl aimgiin lavlah tol (UB 2001) lists it under Mörön sum. But then, the author might have it wrong, too.
From what I have heard, they did have one (some?) agricultural unit(s) (or bags, anyway) during socialism, too. I guess that book above might also mention how many domestic animals they had in 2000.
Hatgal is not a sum,but not part of any sum either. It's a tosgon (~village). Again. this is all according to above source. The area, just some sqkm, is probably too small to be shown on most maps.
I think the problem with Bürentogtoh's (the center's) location on that other map is really just old data. But it doesn't matter because you won't find anything at the old place anyway.Yaan 12:04, 9 February 2007 (UTC)
Yaan - I was confused - on administrative map margins is sum number table and for Hövsgöl aymag number is 24, but on the map are located only 22. It will be nice if missing 2 sums are Mörön and Hatgal tosgon. But we need be 100 percen sure that this suggestion is true (official sources confirmation is needful). If yes, we will think about new signs creation on our maps and new entities in 2-d level administrative division articles in Wiki. I'm really glad, it becomes more and more interesting. Bogomolov.PL 12:52, 9 February 2007 (UTC)
If there 22 sums on the map, then the missing two should be Mörön and Hatgal (on older maps, Hanh might be missing too, leaving only 21 'real' sums). I don't have any source available now and won't be home until next weekend. Even then the book is maybe not really an official source. But IIRC some darga from Hövsgöl helped in editing it, so it's probably better than nothing. In the meantime, Mongolian wikipedia seems to have the same number of sums and tosgons: "23 сум, нэг тосгонтой засаг захиргааны 24 нэгжтэй.", from . Yaan 13:37, 9 February 2007 (UTC)

Bogomolov, I've asked Hangarid to contact you about his map. I hope there won't be too many changes necessary because of it...

Unless I've miscounted, I think for the moment it's save to assume that Mörön and Hatgal are independent tosgons and not part of a sum. Maybe we can have a notice on the talk page of the article (and/or the map image) as a disclaimer until we're really 200% certain. We may also have to double check all other aymags for extra tosgons besides the aymag centers.

Btw: The numer of sum in the table in each article may or may not be correct in some cases. I've used the best information I had available to create them, and sometimes there were conflicts between different sources. --Latebird 19:32, 9 February 2007 (UTC)

Latebird: Mörön is a sum, Hatgal is a tosgon. To add another link, I have found that lists a lot of sums (but not all), and interestingly has Hatgal somehow incorporated into Alag-Erdene, but not entirely. Or at least Alag-Erdene+Hatgal seems to be the only place in Hövsgöl to receive more than one ambulance motorcycle. Yaan 13:23, 10 February 2007 (UTC)

Hmmm... most sources seem to think that an aymag center is never a sum (or part of a sum). Where can we get an official word on this? --Latebird 20:01, 10 February 2007 (UTC)

From the plates on the aimag center's town hall? Maybe one could also try to retrieve some adresses within the aimag centers. Or some sufficiently official documents. Yaan 17:31, 11 February 2007 (UTC)

Unfortunately, a lot of the publicly available information is not up to date. This may include plates on buildings and "official" web sites. Addresses probably don't say much about the administrative status of a place either. The problem is that most Mongolians couldn't care less about such administrative trivia, so you'll get many incorrect answers if you ask people... But this is the first time I hear that the Aymag center isn't supposed to be an extra entity, so I'm inclined to go with "conventional wisdom" and list it as a tosgon. If we should happen to get formal confirmation later that Mörön is an exception, we can still change it. --Latebird 09:44, 12 February 2007 (UTC)

Hmm. But what are your sources (other than hearsay or "I have never heard of such a thing before") to assume that aimag centers are usually supposed to be "extra entities" (i.e. not a sum)? I agree it's a very difficult problem, and much harder to solve than the different names for sums and their centers. Have you had any success in contacting user Hangarid? He seemed quite competent for another aimag - and he claimed to have the ultimate map!

Sum office presence in aymag centre does not mean this city is obligatory sum part. Can be two possible situations: 1. Like Praha (Prague) is the capital, but not the part of Středočeský kraj. 2. City administration is common for both city and surrounding sum. What I don't know: are city administrations separate from aymag administrations? About tosgon. In 1981 was 25 "urban type settlements" (back translation from Russian) and 20 cities in Mongolia. "Urban village" may be better definition, because official statistics add tosgon population to urban one. In Stat.Yearbook 2001 is footnote: "Data from Population and Housing census, 2000. Some settlements, which were clasified as villages in the census are not clasified as them according to the 2000 Resident Population Data". Is it possible tosgon definition is only for statistic use? Bogomolov.PL 13:12, 12 February 2007 (UTC)

Well, that's part of the problem. I don't have any hard sources about the sum/aymag center question either. Just that most people I've talked to seemed to agree about it. You (Yaan) are the first one I hear say anything different. So I'm basically taking a statistical approach here, which we may or may not have to correct later.
I've tried to contact Hangarid, but he seems to have been absent for the last two weeks. I'll try to send him an e-mail and see what happens. I had a longish discussion with him about these topics here (in german language). Since he lives in Mongolia several months a year, I have some confidence that he actually knows what he's talking about.
I'd expect that sum, city/village, and aymag administration are handled by seperate authorities, even if they should happen to reside in the same location. --Latebird 13:41, 12 February 2007 (UTC)
I've just read your discussion with Hangarid, and at least back then you seemed more leaning towards "aimag centers are sums, too" - which only means that "conventional wisdom" doesn't really help us here. Hangarid seems to know a lot of people in Hovd, I know some people in Mörön, but without hard and good sources we could both be wrong and are close to original research anyway.
At least in Hövsgöl, there are separate administrative structures for the aimag and the sum (I'm still positive that Mörön is a sum), and within Mörön sum either bags and horoos or bags and the whole town might be on the same administrative level.
About the administrative status of a tosgon I don't really have a clue. The statistical yearbooks from the website seems to list Hatgal as a sum-level administrative unit, otherwise 24 for the no. of sums in Hövsgöl wouldn't make sense. For the other aimags, I don't know.
For now, maybe we can at least start the clean-up of the Sumuud of Mongolia and the Aymag pages? After all, whether aimag capitals are sums, and the status of tosgons, are mere details compared to the mistakes these pages currently contain. Yaan 12:43, 13 February 2007 (UTC)
Yaan - Rarelibra, Latebird and me - we are too far from Mongolia, I think. For our small Mongolian team you discovered tosgons. Tosgon presence changes formrer simple system of 2-nd level administration division, aymag-sum relations also make problem more complex. We need change maps, tables etc, but we need information. For me only online sources are avaliable - but in Mongolian texts I can understand only few keywords. Bogomolov.PL 13:16, 13 February 2007 (UTC)

When I get home next week, I'll do some in-depth research in the two relevant books I have. Unfortunately, they only cover Hövsgöl, so they cannot give anything but hints about the situation in other aimags. Yaan 14:02, 14 February 2007 (UTC)

According to M.Nyamaa's (the inlet also mentions the aimag's sasag darga as "redacteur") Hövsgöl aimgiin lavlah tol, UB 2001, p.97f, Mörön became the sum center of a sum called Büren in 1931, in 1933 it (additionally) became the center of Hövsgöl aimag, in 1956 its status changed from Büren sum's 8th bag to an independent unit called Mörön horoo, in 1961 it became Mörön hot. In 1994 it became Mörön sum. The area is about 102 sqkm.

I also had a look into a brochure called "Mörön hot", edited probably 2001 in Mörön. From what I understood, they basically say the same (incl. that Mörön has been a sum since 1994), and they have pictures of each the aimag's and sum's hural and administrative heads (four persons in total). It's not really a surprise since the ultimate sources are probably the same.

As for Hatgal, according to the first source on p.159 it has been independent ever since the aimag's capital was moved to Mörön in 1933 (ene üyees hatgal biye daasan hev shinjid orj högjih bolson yum). in 1975, the status was changed from Hatgal horoo to either hot or 'oron nutgiin har'yaalaltai hot' (not sure if the second might be an official designation). In 1994 its status was changed to tosgon. On p.7, the book, not really helpfully, states that Hövsgöl has 23 sum, one tosgon and 121 bag. Yaan 14:12, 21 February 2007 (UTC)


Refers to the character table presented under #Plural forms above.

The english language Wikipedia has yet to decide about a standard transliteration system for Mongolian. I've tried to start a discussion about it some time ago, but didn't have the energy to actually get anything decided then. It is probably a good idea to get this discussion started again, but not here. To create an accepted standard for Wikipedia, it must be discussed on Wikipedia_talk:Naming_conventions_(Cyrillic).

What I proposed back then was very similar to what you call "Mongolian map transliteration system" (where exactly is that defined?). The only differences were in the "ь" (left away) and the "Х" (kh instead of h). I think this is close enough that we'll find a mutually agreeable solution. Are we ready to convince the rest of the community about it? --Latebird 11:13, 5 February 2007 (UTC)

I have Road Map of Mongolia (1: 2,5 mln in English), where Mongolian map system is used (may be we will call it MMS) and Road atlas of Mongolia (1: 1 mln Авто замын атлас 2005) in Mongolian. Preparing sum maps all mogolian sum names I'd transliterated manually, so this transliteration system I know by heart. This MMS is transliteration system is most laconic (not KH but H, not OU but U, not DZ but Z). Rejecting of "ь" makes back transliteration into Mongolian impossible. But ideal system does not create conversion losses and is revertable. To meet this requirements we need to save "ь" transliterated by the different character - "ǐ". —The preceding unsigned comment was added by Bogomolov.PL (talkcontribs) --Latebird 16:55, 5 February 2007 (UTC).
Bogomolov - it is not a requirement by Wiki to have 'back transliteration' as a primary capability. If the transliteration is proper (as is the one that Latebird and I use/used), that is what is important here. I am not going to argue with you about the semantics of 'allowing back transliteration'. If the standard usage is to drop the "ь" character, then that is what will occur (and it is dropped, btw, not 'rejected'). If there is some kind of alternate method, then we can use that - especially if it appears to be more usable - as in the one that you are suggesting. Don't get caught up in semantics. Rarelibra 15:30, 5 February 2007 (UTC)

The requirements of Wikipedia ask for a phonetic transliteration system, that will help the average english speaker to pronounce the names as correctly as possible without help. Back-transliteration is only of concern in articles about linguistic topics, but not here. After all, we'll give the original mongolian spelling as well, either in a table or in the introduction of each article. But this discussion should really move to the naminc convention pages, so that other interested editors will see it as well. --Latebird 17:24, 5 February 2007 (UTC)

Rarelibra - Of course this is not Wiki requirement, but my suggestion: toponims and personal names have to be matched with Mongolian cyrillic words one-to-one. Everybody needs street name, town name, surname, company, hotel names latin-cyrillic confrontation, when city map or address in latin is compared in Mongolia to the real cyrillic names. But it is not any purpose for Wiki, of course. It is only my suggestion. If it is possible (it is possible, isn't it?), it is reasonable.
About ь. Of course is possible Gov'. I met several times this transliteration. I have only one question: we need to create transliteration system, or we need to agree with one existing? If we reject Mongolian map transliteration system - may be it will be comfortable for us to use handmade one. Will we introduce order this way? Six (or more) system exist, we will create another one?
Latebird - Phonetic... This is transcription task. But we need to be sure we can read mongolian words correctly to start new close-to-phonetic transliteration system design Bogomolov.PL 18:17, 5 February 2007 (UTC)

Actually, the established english (and german) name for Говь is "Gobi" (compare Gobi Desert). This is not a transliteration of the current mongolian spelling, but a historically grown english name (similar to eg. "Ulan Bator"). We only need an accurate transliteration where no such english name is common. We have done it this way in the german language WP as well, eg de:Dorno-Gobi-Aimag. I think in all other cases, omitting the ь is unproblematic.

The english term "transliteration" means both literal transliteration and what is usually known as transcription in other languages (eg. German). I was originally confused about this as well, as you'll find documented on the naming conventions talk page. So yes, in your terms, what we need here is a transcription system. Literal transliteration would probably confuse most readers (we write for "normal" people, not for linguists). We don't need to decide about this question now, as it is the established WP naming convention standard. We just need to chose the most suitable transcription system for Mongolian. --Latebird 10:44, 6 February 2007 (UTC)

Agreed. Most suitable is first anything already used (like they do with Italian names - Roma, Rome; Napoli, Naples; etc). When a translation does not exist, we use the proper (and respectful) transliteration - in which case, we will lean heavily on you, Bogomolov. :) Rarelibra 13:47, 6 February 2007 (UTC)
Transliteration convention absence force me to use both forms in UB administrative division table. Á propos is it possible to find duureg division map? On UB site it is only for downtown, suburbs are white Bogomolov.PL 10:11, 7 February 2007 (UTC)

The absence of a transliteration convention forces us to define one! I'll update my old proposal at Wikipedia talk:Naming conventions (Cyrillic) with the information from this discussion here, and see that we get a decision soon. Once the convention is defined, we don't need to worry about variations or changes anymore. --Latebird 11:02, 7 February 2007 (UTC)

Ok, I have submitted a formal proposal for the naming conventions. Let's hope that this will result in clearly defined rules soon, so that we won't have to take random choices anymore. Any further comments should be posted there now. --Latebird 12:19, 7 February 2007 (UTC)


I have also read up a bit on Hövsgöl aimag's history. According to the source mentioned above, the Sain Noyon Han and Zasagt Han aimags and their hoshuus were both renamed in 1923 (I suppose the same applied to the other two old aimags), Sain Noyon Han aimag was renamed into into Tsetserleg mandal uulyn aimag and Zasagt Han aimag into Hantaishir uulyn aimag. Additionally, border areas were (gradually?) incorporated into that structure from then on - like the Drahad area in Hövsgöl, but the same might be true for Hovd and Dariganga. Hövsgöl aimag was founded in 1931, it gave some areas to Zavhan and Bulgan aimags in 1938 (which implies that these aimags existed at least from that time on) and got some areas from Arhangai in 1942.

For the history of Arhangai, compare .Yaan 14:29, 21 February 2007 (UTC)

That (and the further above) is great material for the Khövsgöl, Mörön, and Arkhangay articles! I see you already wrote some stuff for Khatgal. Now we just need to find similar information about all the other Aymags... --Latebird 16:27, 21 February 2007 (UTC)

Unfortunately about other aimags (and only about three of them), I have nothing more than picture books. The ones about Hovd and Uvs don't contain any encyclopedic information. The one about Dornogov' says that the aimag was founded in 1931 from the Sain Noyon Khan aimag (or another one of the four old aimags, anyway under the original name), and that it has 14 sums. The included map showed 13 sums if you include the one that Sainshand is in. But then, the english version of the text also says the aimag is as big as Benelux + Sweden. The mongolian version was closer (Benelux + Switzerland), but I still don't think it's a useful source. The pics are nice, though. Yaan 14:18, 26 February 2007 (UTC)

Historical maps[edit]

Something more useful, and fun: has some scans of old Mongolian maps. One map ( or for a bigger picture) seems to depict aimag boundaries and names. Unfortunately, there is a scale, but no date given in the legend, and the author of the site doesn't seem to be entirely sure either. Plus it's written in classical mongolian. But if you like old mongolian maps, check the site out.Yaan 12:50, 30 March 2007 (UTC)

Wow! Very cool maps! And even better, all of them are public domain because of their age. We can only use the information for its historical interest, but the maps should definitively go to Commons (suitably scaled down in some cases). --Latebird 18:56, 30 March 2007 (UTC)
I'm just downloading the whole site, and am going to put all these small gifs and jpgs together, at least for private use. I am not so sure the pictures of the maps are really PD. Most digital pictures of old things (like buildings) aren't PD, I think. What are the WP rules in such cases (too lazy to look for myself now)?
On another note, that the Mongol Ard Ulsiin Gazriin Zurag (or map nr. 15, anyway) shows Hatgal as the center of Hövsgöl probably means it's really from 1931/32. I feel confident enough now that I'm going to rewrite the history section and purge it of anything I cannot verify next week or so. That's going to mean a definite loss of information, however the information that's there now seems rather doubtful. Objections? Yaan 15:51, 4 April 2007 (UTC)
Yes, those maps are definitively PD. Creating a faithful reproduction of a two-dimensional work does not establish any fresh copyright, because the reproduction is considered to be just a copy. With three-dimensional objects things are a bit different, because the choice of camera angle etc. requires creative decisions by the photographer.
The primary reference for the Aimags history is statoids. I don't think they just made that stuff up, so it shouldn't be necessary to remove anything that isn't contradicted by other sources. --Latebird 16:48, 4 April 2007 (UTC)
Then what about my new revision? I've omitted the Inner Mongolian aimags because they didn't belong to Outer Mongolia, and Tannu Tuva because I wasn't really sure what to make of it. Plus I used to think the official name of the Tuva state was also Tannu Tuva, not Urianhai.Yaan 17:13, 4 April 2007 (UTC)
Those other areas are probably not essential for this article. Although if we can confirm the accuracy of their names, mentioning them would provide some additional context. --Latebird 20:21, 4 April 2007 (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 page moved. @harej 17:22, 26 November 2009 (UTC)

Aimags of MongoliaProvinces of MongoliaWP:Use English. Chanheigeorge (talk) 06:25, 2 November 2009 (UTC)

Oppose: I don't think there is a commonly accepted translation for "aimag". Some authors use "province", some use "district" (though more so in pre-1931 contexts), a lot of authors just leave it untranslated. Aimags in Inner Mongolia are usually referred to as "leagues" (from Chinese 盟).
Google Book hits:
Note by Chanheigeorge: this is not an aimag (province) of Mongolia, so it is not covered by this proposal.
Reply: It is mentioned in this very article, and was an aimag of Mongolia.
Yaan (talk) 18:50, 3 November 2009 (UTC)
The sources I gathered about these subdivisions, such as ISO, FIPS, and Statoids, all translate them as "provinces":
  • ISO: [5]
  • FIPS: [6] (scroll to MG)
  • Statoids: [7]

Those are the most official and important sources, barring official translations by the Mongolia government. Chanheigeorge (talk) 04:50, 4 November 2009 (UTC)

Can you perhaps add some links to ISO (or FIPS) translations for Sain Noyon Khan aimag or for Alxa aimag? Yaan (talk) 18:15, 4 November 2009 (UTC)
They are not aimags of the country Mongolia, right? Since they are not first-level divisions of a country, neither ISO nor FIPS provide a code for them. My proposal is simply to rename the page "Aimags of Mongolia" to "Provinces of Mongolia", since those aimags have a commonly-accepted translation to "provinces". As for the other aimags, such as those of Inner Mongolia, it is not covered in this move proposal. Chanheigeorge (talk) 02:15, 5 November 2009 (UTC)
Comment: In case anybody may be confused, this is not a proposal to translate all subdivisions called "aimags" into "provinces". It is simply to propose that, the article dealing with the current aimags of Mongolia, which as I have shown in my evidence, is commonly accepted to be translated to "provinces". So the common English name should be used, just like we have States of Germany and not "Länder of Germany". Note that other subdivisions called aimags can be translated to something else. For example, the aimags in the Chinese autonomous region of Inner Mongolia are called Leagues of Inner Mongolia. While, historical aimags, such as "Sain Noyon Khan aimag", are probably most often left untranslated. Chanheigeorge (talk) 02:22, 5 November 2009 (UTC)
Since we are dealing with current usage, Google web search may be helpful:
I always thought google web searches are supposed to be somewhat inferior to google books or google scholar searches. But I can't find the relevant wp page right now. In any case, google web search usually yields a lot less unique search results than the number given on the first page of the search results. Plus "Ömnögovi" and "Arhangay" each are really just one transciption variant among several. example:
More importantly, you should exclude pages that are just copies of Wikipedia. Then you get
And this article actually does deal with historical aimags, too. Yaan (talk) 12:39, 6 November 2009 (UTC)
  • Support move so the page title reflects the titles of the individual Aimag articles, which are called "X Province". TrueColour (talk) 23:17, 5 November 2009 (UTC)
Comment: If there is a concern about consistency, one could as well move the aimag articles. "X aimag" might even better reflect english usage, per the google books results above. Yaan (talk) 12:39, 6 November 2009 (UTC)
Comment see #Naming where there was consensus reached in 2005 to call the entities "X Province", supported by references to two well known sources, [8] and CIA Factbook [9], both calling the entities provinces. TrueColour (talk) 14:02, 7 November 2009 (UTC)
  • Oppose - (including the undiscussed move from Sums of Mongolia to Districts of Mongolia). Note that in the Google web results above, the vast majority of "Province" instances are Wikipedia clones, with no evidence that this actually reflects current use. Independent sources who mention those entities are usually familiar enough with Mongolia to use the endonyms, as is clearly shown by the Google books results. I'm all in favour of "using English" wherever there is a genuinely equivalent and commonly used term (and I've renamed and changed many articles to that effect), but that is clearly not the case here. In fact, it would probably make more sense to rename the individual articles from "xxx Province" to "xxx Aimag" for consistency. --Latebird (talk) 11:49, 7 November 2009 (UTC)
This article and the individual Aimag articles have had many different names since they were created, based on a variety of arguments. It went from "Aymags" - "Prefectures" - "Provinces" - "Aymguud" - and finally moved to "Aimags of Mongolia" based on then freshly established WP:MON. The individual Aimag articles didn't join in this last move, although they really should have. The relevant discussions are all over the place, often mingled with talks about "Somon", "Sumuud", "Sums", and just now "Districts of Mongolia". In summary, they show that the question is a bit more complex than a simple "Use English" demand would suggest. If printed literature primarily uses the Mongolian terms, then so should we. --Latebird (talk) 13:08, 8 November 2009 (UTC)

I did some research in the page history. WP:UE and consistency was achieved by Tobias Conradi and Ran. It took them 4 days. And they left the article with a concise introduction. From March 2005 until May 2006 English language with its grammar and orthography was used. In May 2006 this calm and consistent period ended. They only missed to put translation references that they cited on the talk page into the article itself. See whole story:

  • Early days May - August 2004
    • Oldest version of the page is from 21:06, 29 May 2004, article title unknown. The individual articles are link without the class name.
    • Class name appended to article links. Class name used is "aymag" yielding "X aymag" as links to individual articles, August 2004
    • Nanshu: "X aymag" - class name introduced to individual articles and spelling changed 07:33, 14 August 2004
  • 11 - 15 March 2005, editing to conform with WP:UE and to achieve consistency between the overview article, the individual articles and the category name. Goal achieved within 4 days.
    • Tobias Conradi: "X Prefecture" - WP:UE and uppercase class name as is usual in English WP introduced, "prefecture" in accordance with article itself, which read "is the Mongolian word for prefecture" and further " Because Mongolia was a province of China", so the word "province" for it's subdivisions was not feasible, see discussion on this page at #Naming 16:34, 11 March 2005
    • Ran: changes the intro (17:04, 11 March 2005) from prefecture to province. See also talk from 2005.
    • Ran: "X Province" in accordance with WP:UE and keeping the uppercase class name as is usual in English WP (08:45, 12 March 2005)
    • Ran, upon request on this talk page, fixes the inconsistency in the intro (02:46, 15 March 2005)
    • Tobias changes the category accordingly: (04:17, 15 March 2005)
    • OUTCOME: Class name "province" is used for the category, the overview article, the individual articles. Intro states that "aymag is the Mongolian word for province", references from talk page not included in article.
  • May 2006 first violations of WP:UE, December 2006 first page move that does not use copy paste
    • Latebird changes the intro, using the word "Aymag" in uppercase, which may imply it is not "really" English. 14:35, 22 May 2006. The edit comment says "history info from Statoids" [12], source is not cited in article. The terms "somon" as plural and "sum" as singular.
  • September 2006 - May 2007 several page moves and terminology changes, reference to the word "province" in intro deleted
  • August 2009 - Novmber 2009: edits towards more structure WP:UE and consistency
  • November 2009 - today, edit warring
    • Latebird deletes reference, the translation is now unreferenced, starts edit warring (13:12, 8 November 2009)
    • TrueColour reverts reference deletion and adds ref tags (13:51, 8 November 2009)
    • Latebird deletes references again, translation now again unreferenced, edit note: "rv Original research - those two refs don't support the statement, they are merely (inconclusive) examples": 15:20, (8 November 2009)

Please see Category:Country subdivisions by continent to find out that English WP does generally use English native words for article titles, and uses the transliterated terms mostly only as anotation. That the term "aimag/aymag" is used in some specialized books does not mean it is to be used overall. TrueColour (talk) 18:02, 8 November 2009 (UTC)

  • Support move. As neither variant ("province", "a(y|i)mag", "aymak") is clearly predominant across the board (based on the searches and opinions above), the best solution is to stick to one that's most recognizable in English. That would be "province".—Ëzhiki (Igels Hérissonovich Ïzhakoff-Amursky) • (yo?); 15:58, November 16, 2009 (UTC)
  • Support As per nomination, WP:ENGLISH.--Labattblueboy (talk) 12:27, 24 November 2009 (UTC)


Comment: per the search results above, it seems that aimag is used more commonly, though. Yaan (talk) 11:31, 9 November 2009 (UTC)

Only counting books cannot yield that result. TrueColour (talk) 16:24, 9 November 2009 (UTC)
If my math skills are not completely off, both the books and the web search yielded more results for some sort of "aimag" than for "province" (27+75>25, 148+50+105+12>122+122). Of course you are free to provide some more useful tool to assess common usage. Yaan (talk) 17:16, 9 November 2009 (UTC)
Maths skills may be good, or what matters here is calculating skills, which is not really maths ;-). But the numbers do not say what is used more common. E.g. there may be more readers of ISO, CIA Factbook, Statoids (3 sources) than all other sources combined. Same for Google News search, one source (New York Times) uses "province" and 20 other Mongolia specific sources use "aimag". That's nice to know, but does not lead to "commonly used is aimag". TrueColour (talk) 19:37, 10 November 2009 (UTC)
This may be so, but I don't think the BBC is very Mongolia-specific. But really, if we follow that logic, we don't even need to start counting google hits, we just need to find one source that uses a certain spelling and claim said source to be the most "common" one. Can you prove that Statoids is read by more people than Owen Lattimore is? Yaan (talk) 17:48, 11 November 2009 (UTC)
But really, if we follow that logic, we don't even need to start counting google hits - Indeed. I don't think the BBC is very Mongolia-specific - Nor did or do I. Ever thought of using Oxford English Dictionary? Can you prove that Statoids is read by more people than Owen Lattimore is? - No. I think this is impossible. TrueColour (talk) 21:28, 14 November 2009 (UTC)

Weak oppose: I have to qualify my vote by saying that I don't know much about Mongolia. But the only Anglo-American author whose name I can remember as an authority on Mongolia - Owen Lattimore - seemed to have used "Aimak" (see for citations), so by keeping "Aimak" (or "Aimag", which, I suppose, is an alternative, more modern, transliteration), we will be in a good company. (Aimag and aimak both appear abundantly on Google Books, but the latter seems to be more common in older, or East European, sources). A propos of nothing, I think that the Mongolian word "aimag" has also been used in other languages (e.g. Russian, German) to refer to Mongolia's administrative units, so English is not unique in using it. Vmenkov (talk) 13:27, 9 November 2009 (UTC)

What do you mean by "the Mongolian word "aimag" has also been used in other languages (e.g. Russian, German) to refer to Mongolia's administrative units, so English is not unique in using it"? Do you refer to other Wikipedias? There are also some that use their native words for provinces. You can also browser the history of this article to see how some of the interwikilinks were changed around, indicating that aimag in other languages too might not be native. At the end, this is the English WP and not the German or Russian and it should follow the EnWP rules. That "aimag" is used in some books does not at all mean it is the word that per WP:UE should be used. TrueColour (talk) 16:13, 9 November 2009 (UTC)
As said above, I think "aimag" is actually no only used in more books, but also on more non-wikipedia-related websites than "province". Yaan (talk) 17:56, 9 November 2009 (UTC)
Well, I meant what I said: (1) One can see aimag/aimak in maps, books, etc. in various European languages (e.g., all Soviet atlases that show Mongolia, or research papers from various European countries that talk about Mongolia), so apparently people there felt it more appropriate (precise, perhaps?) to use the Mongol word instead of translating it as oblast, Gebiet, Bezirk, etc., although of course some languages probably do translate it. I quite agree that this is, per se, is not an argument for making a decision in English WP, but I thought that this is a somewhat useful piece of background information. (2) I am not saying that we must use the same terminology as one or two well-regarded sources in English (in this case, Lattimore is about the only author whose name I'd immediately recall when thinking about Mongolia), but I basically gave my - non-specialist perspective, as a reader of Wikipedia article rather than an editor: namely, the fact that the word Aimak/Aimag is appears immediately recognizable and unambiguous to this lay reader. Vmenkov (talk) 23:47, 9 November 2009 (UTC)

Comment: The essence of WP:NAME seems to be "Article names should be recognizable to readers, unambiguous, and consistent with usage in reliable English-language sources." Since one user insists books are not good enough as sources, here is a more complete search. If we restrict ourself to aimag names with little variation in transscription, we get

i.e. using some variant of "aimag" seems consistently more common than using "province". Yaan (talk) 10:47, 10 November 2009 (UTC)

It is also "Aymak" spelling, not so frequent, but is.

Bogomolov.PL (talk) 11:26, 10 November 2009 (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.

Examples vs. references[edit]

User TrueColour keeps adding a statement to the article about what the "usual translation" of the term Aimag is in his opinion. He lists the World Factbook and Statoids as examples, purporting them to be "references". But that's not how references work. A valid reference would be a publication making the same statement as the article, specifically "Aimag is usually translated as Province". Taking two examples and claiming them to be references is Original Synthesis of those sources and not acceptable in Wikipedia. It seems as if TrueColor is trying to "create facts" to support his position in the rename request above. I don't think that is quite the correct way to go about it. --Latebird (talk) 17:47, 8 November 2009 (UTC)

At least it is some reference for your completely unreferenced insertions of the term "province" into the article [13] [14]. It was you, who inserted the term in the first place. I am the one helping to reference your insertions. If no one can provide reference for the translation and the Factbook usages is not accepted, we should move the article immediately to back were it was, namely "Provinces of Mongolia" and delete all references to aimags/aymags until we find evidence province=aimag/aymag. TrueColour (talk) 18:12, 8 November 2009 (UTC)
Again, focusing on the current 21 aimags of Mongolia, both the ISO 3166-2 [15] and FIPS 10-4 [16] standards translate these subdivisions into provinces. I'm still not sure how you can get more official than that. And the statoids page, while not official, is certainly a site which is backed up by a lot of research. Chanheigeorge (talk) 04:11, 9 November 2009 (UTC)
Agreed. Little note: LLOW as reference for ISO shows only what ISO did in the past. They do not cite the edition they use, but from the entry for Denmark it looks they are outdated. Anyway, the province = aymag translation probably still holds. If these two sources are used the term would be "aymag" not "aimag". TrueColour (talk) 16:20, 9 November 2009 (UTC)
Can you please cite the wp convention that says we should use ISO names, rather than the one most commonly used? Yaan (talk) 17:29, 9 November 2009 (UTC)
Good point. Maybe ISO and CIA Factbook are itself a source for commoness? Book count is not. TrueColour (talk) 19:47, 9 November 2009 (UTC)
Examples are not sources, and two examples don't define "commonness". It is also clearly the purpose of neither ISO 3166-2 nor the CIA Factbook to provide authoritative translations for local terms. If we don't find a source that makes an explicit statement, then counting uses in books is indeed the most reliable method to determine what is common and what isn't. --Latebird (talk) 22:19, 9 November 2009 (UTC)
Aren't ISO 3166-2 and CIA Factbook publications, which means they are sources? While ISO 3166-2 does not provide the authoritative translation, it does provide some sort of commonly-accepted translation for international usage, and most often they take their sources from the local government. And again, we are not looking for a correct translation of the local terms from Mongol to English, as Wikipedia is not prescriptive, but descriptive. We are looking for the most common English term to describe these subdvisions. I'm all for looking for books, references, webpages, official sources from the Monglian government, etc., although we should place a limit on recent sources, as the "provinces" term may be adopted recently, and counting sources from, say the 1930s, will skew the results. Chanheigeorge (talk) 05:01, 10 November 2009 (UTC)
Of course they are sources, just not for the claims that you and TrueColour are trying to use them for. ISO 3166-2 is a source for the codes defined therein, and nothing else. the Factbook is a source for all kinds of information, but the spelling and translation of geographic names in there is almost entirely random, so it can't be a reliable source for those. In our context both of them are really nothing more than examples. They have no more relevance in determining what is "most common" than any other random web site. Using them alone means to derive statistically meaningful results from a data set of just two samples, and that is bound to fail. I also don't quite understand why an editor insists on entirely ignoring the Wikipedia:Naming conventions (Mongolian), trying to override them with random spellings found somewhere on the web.
Btw.: We are not looking for the "most common English term", but for the "term most commonly used in English language sources", where the term itself may or may not actually be English. I agree with the notion to focus on recent sources. I'd set the limit around 1990, when Mongolia became accessible to western researchers again. --Latebird (talk) 21:52, 10 November 2009 (UTC)
Just to clarify, my position is simply that, the "term most commonly used in English language sources" for the current 21 "aimags" of Mongolia are "provinces". This is based on the evidence I've encountered, which are credible and reliable English language sources (I don't think ISO 3166-2 is simply "any other random web site"). If a survey based on recent sources turn out to be not the case, I'm glad to accept the results. TrueColour has his many viewpoints and edits, which I do not have the time to look at, and therefore, do not necessarily support. Chanheigeorge (talk) 03:01, 11 November 2009 (UTC)
The idea and task of the ISO 3166-2 is to provide universal codes for every country, these codes are the object of the international standart, these codes are the same in China or Ethiopia or Armenia where writing systems very differ but using of ISO codes makes possible to identify every country or its division. The ISO idea was not to teach the world the correct English names, but simply identify with codes a country and divisions of a country. Bogomolov.PL (talk) 07:27, 11 November 2009 (UTC)

ISO 3166-2 Codes for the representation of names of countries and their subdivisions – Part 2: Country subdivision code provides codes for the "names" of country subdivisions and the "names" of the country subdivisions itself. Please read the standard. But it does not matter what the purpose of it is. It is one source and each source using a specific name is an example for the usage of that name. Like in the section above where editors dived into google counting, sources are counted, and sources are examples. That "The ISO idea was not to teach the world the correct English names" is irrelevant. Every text using correct English IS teaching correct English, even without the specific idea of doing so.

@Latebird and the personal attack: ("I also don't quite understand why an editor insists on entirely ignoring the Wikipedia:Naming conventions (Mongolian)"), please respect WP:NPA. Furthermore WP:MON in the form it is in since September 2008, supports the use of the term "province" more then the use of "aimag". Please calm down with your prose. TrueColour (talk) 21:58, 14 November 2009 (UTC)

TrueColour asks for the sources[edit]

This edit asks for the sources, but what can I do? I have this official administrative divisions map in my hands, the name of this map was added in the reference. What extra information has to be added? Bogomolov.PL (talk) 17:31, 9 November 2009 (UTC)

Probably he/she cannot read Mongolian. Maybe it's better if you cite some Statistical yearbook, since they are usually bilingual. Otherwise, no idea. Yaan (talk) 17:43, 9 November 2009 (UTC)
Whether I can read Mongolian does not matter. Sources must be English, otherwise they are similar to WP:ORIG TrueColour (talk) 19:41, 9 November 2009 (UTC)
Please don't just invent your own rules. Wikipedia policy explicitly states that sources don't need to be in English. Just because you personally can't read something doesn't make it Original Research. There are enough other editors who are well able to verify such a source. --Latebird (talk) 22:31, 9 November 2009 (UTC)
It is the WP:NONENG rule in Wikipedia wich states the need of the translation of the information added in Wiki and providing of the original text in a footnote. As the source I used was translated and original Mongolian names were present in the table it is possibly reasonable to translate the name of the source in the respective footnote. Bogomolov.PL (talk) 08:29, 10 November 2009 (UTC)
If I read correctly, original text in footnote is only needed if you translate a direct quotation (even then it's "should", not "must"). Though yes, giving a translation of the title of the source together with the original title might be more convenient for the general reader. Yaan (talk) 09:38, 10 November 2009 (UTC)
Thanks for updating me on WP:NONENG: "However, sources in other languages are acceptable where an English equivalent is not available. " - Did not know that, and honestly seems strange to me. I can bring some source of a language no-one else understands here in WP and then claim, there is no "English equivalent". Seems really strange to me, sorry. But, anyway, that's the policy, and asking whether this is good for EnWP does not belong here. Thanks again for pointing me there! TrueColour (talk) 16:10, 10 November 2009 (UTC)
Restricting us to English language sources would keep the majority of human knowledge out of Wikipedia, in direct violation of the project's core objectives. --Latebird (talk) 20:43, 10 November 2009 (UTC)
If even a source in other language was translated it to English it would be a good idea to provide link to an original source too as everybody in Wikipedia can check a translation. At the Mongolian field of work we are dealing to the Mongolian sources. It is completely natural as these sources were not translated. We have a number of native Mongolians in en:wiki, so wikipedia afraids more these Mongolian sources would be lost for wiki. Bogomolov.PL (talk) 17:53, 10 November 2009 (UTC)


This is not directly related to the current naming dispute, but if we mention that aimag is sometimes translated into English as province, should we also mention that the common translation of province (as in Hebei province) into Mongolian is not aimag, but muj? Yaan (talk) 17:48, 9 November 2009 (UTC)

Interesting. You mean in Mongolian Hebei Province is called Hebei muj? Into which article could we put that information? Administrative divisions of Mongolia, as side notes? Maybe mn:Ангилал:ОХУ-ын_засаг_захиргааны_нэгжүүд can be used as further source. TrueColour (talk) 19:43, 9 November 2009 (UTC)
Yes, it's Хэбэй муж. The term is only used for entities outside of Mongolia and is not synonymous for "Aimag". --Latebird (talk) 23:23, 9 November 2009 (UTC)
That's my point. If we mention that aimag can be translated to province, we should probably also mention that the reverse does not hold, i.e. that province can in most cases not be translated to aimag. Yaan (talk) 09:38, 10 November 2009 (UTC)
As matter of interest, aimag in the context of the state of Mongolia is translated as 省 shěng (normally translated as 'province') in Chinese and 県 ken (normally translated as 'prefecture') in Japanese.
The provinces of Canada are called 省 shěng (normally translated as 'province') in Chinese and 州 shū (normally translated as 'state') in Japanese.
The states of India are called 邦 bāng (normally translated as 'state, country') in Chinese and 州 shū (normally translated as 'state') in Japanese.
The states of Germany (Länder), the U.S. and Australia are called 州 zhōu in Chinese and 州 shū in Japanese (both normally translated as 'state') .
The provinces of China and Vietnam are called 省 shěng in Chinese and 省 shō in Japanese (both normally translated as 'province').
None of this is of direct relevance to this article, but it might bring a bit of perspective to the issue. The assignment of names is often a matter of tradition or convention. "Logic" (as seen in arguments like "if Mongolia used to be a province of China, aimags shouldn't be translated as "province") doesn't necessarily have a place. Bathrobe (talk) 00:38, 22 November 2009 (UTC)
This is very interesting to me. Thank you. I wonder how this information could be brought to article space. Decision on which languages and which subdivisions to include would need to be made. TrueColour (talk) 02:45, 24 November 2009 (UTC)

Is the administrative subdivision that UB is called khot or niislel[edit]

The 2006 statistical yearbook on p.62 says that "Mongol Ulsyn nutag devser zasag zahirgaany huv'd 21 aimag, niislel [...] huvaagdana". So my impression is that this type of subdivision is called "niislel", not "hot". Of course in colloquial speech UB is both (even kind of synonymous with both!), I just think that since this article is about Mongolia's administrative structure, we should either use the most official term (plus translation) or no term at all. Yaan (talk) 18:55, 9 November 2009 (UTC)

This should be mainly addressed at Subdivisions of Mongolia. The article here is about the provinces/aimags. Can you add the infos there? Add both, official, semi-offical etc, what ever you find. TrueColour (talk) 19:51, 9 November 2009 (UTC)
Being the capital (niislel) doesn't stop UB from being a city (khot). --Latebird (talk) 22:37, 9 November 2009 (UTC)
That's right. Being the capital (niislel) doesn't stop UB from being a city (khot). Similarly being part of the administrative division "niislel" doesn't stop Baganuur and Bagakhangai from being cities. Similarly administrative organisation of small aimags around cities Darkhan and Erdenet, doesn't stop them from being cities. There is city Erdenet on the territory of Orkhon aimag. Similarly, administratively organising city Khovd into "Jargalan" soum and city Choibalsan into "Kherlen" soum will not stop them from being cities. Cities and administrative divisions exist in paralell. Gantuya eng (talk) 21:51, 26 November 2009 (UTC)
That is very interesting, maybe you can add this info to Subdivisions of Mongolia. This article here, is about the provinces/aimags. TrueColour (talk) 01:57, 30 November 2009 (UTC)
Mongolian Constitution states that country subdivisions are: ulsyn niislel and 21 aimags. Bogomolov.PL (talk) 08:17, 10 November 2009 (UTC)
Yes. This article is not about what Ulaanbaatar is, but about what the first-level subdivisions of Mongolia are. This means that the relevant source is Mongolia's constitution, not some factbook. Yaan (talk) 09:38, 10 November 2009 (UTC)
The article was called Provinces of Mongolia and after unilateral move is called Aimags of Mongolia. It is not called first-level subdivisions of Mongolia. TrueColour (talk) 02:41, 24 November 2009 (UTC)
(sidenote: this discussion was started after User Truecolour twice inserted (as it seems, erroneous) information about Mongolia being divided into "21 provinces (aymguud, singular - aymag) and 1 municipality (singular - hot)".) Yaan (talk) 09:25, 24 November 2009 (UTC)
What is this sidenote for? Does it make smaller the error in your claim that "This article is ...about what the first-level subdivisions of Mongolia are." Why are you pointing to User:TrueColour, is this a personal thing. Please respect WP:NPA and restrict discussion to facts that are related to the topic. TrueColour (talk) 10:32, 24 November 2009 (UTC)
It was you who reverted the correct designation twice, that's all. Basically, this discussion about whether, as a first-level administrative division of Mongolia, Ulaanbaatar is a khot or a niislel has been over for two weeks, I dont know why you are trying to give it a new spin now. That this article's title is not first-level subdivisions of Mongolia does not mean it should contain doubtful information from unreliable sources.
But maybe you just posted in the wrong thread? Yaan (talk) 15:24, 24 November 2009 (UTC)
WP:NPA is a good policy to follow. Response to false claims made along with a personal attack, can be left out. Simply ignore the false claim, it will crumble to dust by itself.
It was written in this thread by someone: "This article is not about what Ulaanbaatar is, but about what the first-level subdivisions of Mongolia are.". That is, derived from article title, strange to hear, since there are first-level subdivisions that are not provinces. TrueColour (talk) 15:44, 24 November 2009 (UTC)
This is really getting a bit stupid. I'll readily admit that this one sentence from the above discussion may be, especially when taken out of context, not 100% accurate. But it very well captures the essence of the discussion (again, "khot" or "niislel") about what was wrong with the lede section after your edits. In any case, I don't see what this bickering has to do with improving the article.
Btw. I think Mongolia has only one 1st-level subdivision that is not an aimag. May I now call you "someone", too, or accuse you of personal attacks. Yaan (talk) 16:03, 24 November 2009 (UTC)
Avoiding telling other people what they may or may not do, it can be shown that the sentence "It was you who reverted the correct designation twice, that's all." is not true and is a misrepresentation of what happend. E.g. this revert did change something, maybe also re-inserting wrong information as a side effect. The insertion of hot was referenced. But the pre-revert material was largely unreferenced and was wrong, since it said, that the 21 aimags are the top-level administrative divisions. This is not true. It is 21 aimags + the capital. Similiar can be shown for this revert: The intro is misleading the reader in the first sentence, the second sentence mentions the sums and the third sentence says Ulanbataar is administrated as a district. What as of now is called the correct designation for the capital status, namely niislel, was not present before the reverts. TrueColour (talk) 17:49, 24 November 2009 (UTC)
So does this mean the point you are trying to make in this discussion is that the lede should read "Mongolia is divided into 21 aimags plus the capital" rather than the current intro? Sorry I didn't get this immediatly, your "The article was called Provinces of Mongolia and after unilateral move is called Aimags of Mongolia. It is not called first-level subdivisions of Mongolia." did not really make clear which part exactly of the article you wanted to have improved.
I am aware "xot" is referenced, that does not stop it from being wrong, and that's why this discussion (or rather, the one concluded 14 days ago) was necessary in the first place. Yaan (talk) 18:07, 24 November 2009 (UTC)
Several things explained, no edits to make a single point. Yaan, sorry, I have no time to repeat/explain in detail. I just got suddenly short of time. Keep up the good work! Only stronger issue I see left is the article naming. Rest can be sorted out easily. best regards. Please, that I drop out here, has just to do with my off Wiki life! TrueColour (talk) 04:12, 25 November 2009 (UTC)
When Ulan Bator is mentioned in the article to point its unique status of the capital city excluded out of the aimag/province network - this kind of information has an encyclopedic value. It is relevant to say that capital city is not a province/aimag and is not a part of any of them. Bogomolov.PL (talk) 17:23, 24 November 2009 (UTC)
Indeed. TrueColour (talk) 17:49, 24 November 2009 (UTC)