Template:Dts

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Dts stands for Date Table Sorting and is used to correctly sort and display dates in a sortable table (see Help:Sorting).

What it solves

Normally, for proper sorting, dates must be entered in YYYY-MM-DD format. However, that format does not conform to the Manual of Style for date display. This template automatically creates the hidden key for sorting purposes whilst displaying the date in an alternative format (e.g. day-month-year).

Parameters

Dates

The year, month and day can either be entered separately or as a single date.
{{dts|year|month|day|BC}} {{dts|date}}
  • 1st parameter – Year (optional if month is given)
    • Positive number (1 to 9999) represent years AD or BC (dependant on the fourth parameter).
    • Negative numbers (−1 to −9999) represent years BC (without the fourth parameter).
  • 2nd parameter – Month (optional if the day is not given either)
    • Full month name – e.g. February
    • Abbreviated month name – e.g. Feb
    • Month number – (either zero-padded or not) e.g. 2 or 02
  • 3rd parameter – Day (optional)
    • Day number – (either zero-padded or not) e.g. 7 or 07
  • 4th parameter – (optional)
    • May be BC, AD, BCE or CE
    • Used with a positive year number
  • 1st parameter – the full date
    • By default YYYY-MM-DD format becomes month-day-year format while other formats remain as input.
    • Abbreviated months are accepted and are returned as input.
    • Capitalisation and comma mistakes are corrected.
    • A single number is interpreted as a year otherwise the date is accepted and interpreted according to the php date/time format (since the {{#time:}} parser is used). Certain limits (e.g. it won't go before 100 AD) therefore apply.
Examples
input style input code hidden sort key visible output
{{dts|year}} {{dts|1893}} 01893-01-01-0000 1893
{{dts|-89}} -9911-01-01-0000 89 BC
{{dts|month}} {{dts|Oct}} 02014-10-01-0000 Oct
{{dts|month year}} {{dts|February 1767}} 01767-02-01-0000 February 1767
{{dts|day month year}} {{dts|12 Aug 1987}} 01987-08-12-0000 12 Aug 1987
{{dts|month day, year}} {{dts|July 1, 1867}} 01867-07-01-0000 July 1, 1867
{{dts|day month}} {{dts|25 October}} 02014-10-25-0000 25 October
{{dts|month day}} {{dts|Jan 1}} 02014-01-01-0000 Jan 1
{{dts|YYYY-MM-DD}} {{dts|2014-12-09}} 02014-12-09-0000 December 9, 2014
{{dts|year|month}} {{dts|1990|10}} 01990-10-01-0000 October 1990
{{dts|1980|Dec}} 01980-12-01-0000 Dec 1980
{{dts|1970|August}} 01970-08-01-0000 August 1970
{{dts|year|month|day}} {{dts|2024|Jun|12}} 02024-06-12-0000 Jun 12, 2024
{{dts|-204|11|22}} -9796-11-22-0000 November 22, 204 BC
{{dts|year|month|day|era}} {{dts|44|3|15|BC}} -9956-03-15-0000 March 15, 44 BC
{{dts|94|Oct|17|AD}} 00094-10-17-0000 Oct 17, 94 AD
{{dts||month}} {{dts||May}} 02014-05-01-0000 May
{{dts||month|day}} {{dts||Sep|12}} 02014-09-12-0000 Sep 12

Formatting

Using format produces a format that depends on, but is not necessarily equal to the format of the supplied date. This requires multiple calls of function #time, reducing the maximum number of calls of this template on a page in the worst case to 88, see below. The format parameter can take nine values.

Examples
value function input code hidden sort key visible output
  format depends on the input {{dts|26 Jan 1788}} 01788-01-26-0000 26 Jan 1788
{{dts|March 12, 1557}} 01557-03-12-0000 March 12, 1557
{{dts|1975-02-13}} 01975-02-13-0000 February 13, 1975
dmy displays the date in day-month-year format {{dts|Sep 13, 1888|format=dmy}} 01888-09-13-0000 13 Sep 1888
{{dts|1983-01-03|format=dmy}} 01983-01-03-0000 3 January 1983
dm displays only the day and month in day-month format {{dts|Feb 26, 1788|format=dm}} 01788-02-26-0000 26 Feb
{{dts|2020-10-15|format=dm}} 02020-10-15-0000 15 October
mdy displays the date in month-day-year format {{dts|August 31, 1901|format=mdy}} 01901-08-31-0000 August 31, 1901
{{dts|2006-11-08|format=mdy}} 02006-11-08-0000 November 8, 2006
md displays only the day and month in month-day format {{dts|26 Jun 1988|format=md}} 01988-06-26-0000 Jun 26
{{dts|2002-05-27|format=md}} 02002-05-27-0000 May 27
my displays only the month and year in month-year format {{dts|16 November 1488|format=my}} 01488-11-16-0000 November 1488
d displays only the day {{dts|6 July 1666|format=d}} 01666-07-06-0000 6
m displays only the month {{dts|1980-02-12|format=m}} 01980-02-12-0000 February
y displays only the year {{dts|-26|Jan|18|format=y}} -9974-01-18-0000 26 BC
hide hides the date {{dts|15 October 1800|format=hide}} 01800-10-15-0000

Abbreviation

There are two ways of abbreviating the month name.

  1. Directly input an abbreviated month name.
  2. Use the abbr=on parameter.
Examples
abbreviation method input code hidden sort key visible output
none {{dts|2000-01-01}} 02000-01-01-0000 January 1, 2000
{{dts|2000|1|1}} 02000-01-01-0000 January 1, 2000
{{dts|1 January 2000}} 02000-01-01-0000 1 January 2000
{{dts|2000|January|1}} 02000-01-01-0000 January 1, 2000
abbreviated input {{dts|1 Jan 2000}} 02000-01-01-0000 1 Jan 2000
{{dts|2000|Jan|1}} 02000-01-01-0000 Jan 1, 2000
abbr=on {{dts|1 January 2000|abbr=on}} 02000-01-01-0000 1 Jan 2000
{{dts|2000|January|1|abbr=on}} 02000-01-01-0000 Jan 1, 2000
{{dts|2000-01-01|abbr=on}} 02000-01-01-0000 Jan 1, 2000
{{dts|2000|1|1|abbr=on}} 02000-01-01-0000 Jan 1, 2000

Additional sort key

In case two dates in a table are identical they may be ordered using the addkey parameter.

Examples
input code hidden sort key visible output
{{dts|2010-10-10|addkey=3}} 02010-10-10-0003 October 10, 2010
{{dts|2010-10-09}} 02010-10-09-0000 October 9, 2010
{{dts|2010-10-10|addkey=1}} 02010-10-10-0001 October 10, 2010
{{dts|2010-10-10}} 02010-10-10-0000 October 10, 2010
{{dts|2010-10-10|addkey=4}} 02010-10-10-0004 October 10, 2010
{{dts|2010-10-11}} 02010-10-11-0000 October 11, 2010
{{dts|2010-10-10|addkey=2}} 02010-10-10-0002 October 10, 2010

Wrapping

To turn off the suppression of word wraps, use the nowrap=off parameter.

Notes

Sorting for incomplete dates

Whole months or years

A whole year or month (and year) is sorted according to its first day.

Missing years

If the year is not specified, the date will be sorted as if the year were the current year.

Error handling

Entering an invalid date format will (generally) produce an error message such as the one below.

Error: 35 June 1900
This is not an acceptable date format. Please check the spelling, numbers, and/or read the documentation at template {{dts}} for correct date input.

Calendar choice

The template is not capable of distinguishing Julian and Gregorian calendar dates. Also, it is not capable of taking a date in one calendar as input and outputting a date in the other calendar. Thus, to insure proper sorting, editors must either use one calendar for all dates, or pick a specific changeover date (for example, deciding that 4 October 1582 is Julian and all later dates are Gregorian); this would be done on an article-by article basis. Editors are also responsible for explaining to the reader whether the visible dates are Julian or Gregorian, if there is any possibility of confusion.

Linking

The template formerly linked dates automatically. To turn linking off the parameter link=off was used. In accordance with current guidelines linking is no longer supported. Please do not use this parameter. Please remove it from existing transclusions.

See also

  • {{TBA}}, allows quarters, and allows sorting of time periods by end date.
  • m:Template:dts (backlinks edit), since on Meta e.g. 09999 9999 induces numeric sort mode, "&" is prefixed to force string sort mode.
  • {{sort}}, sorting by a specified key (also good for complicated numbers, e.g. scientific notation)
  • {{sortname}}, full name sorting (using "last name, first name" as default sort key)
  • {{tts}}, for sorting times in result tables of athletic events (only needed in certain cases - see template documentation)
  • {{mss}}, for sorting times in tables of eclipses
  • {{nts}}, for numbers