User talk:Opera hat

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User talk:Opera hat/Archive 1, 2

Lists of generals[edit]

Thanks for your message and to paraphrase your words to me on the full generals article, "you do realise that means there would be" [tens of] "thousands of entries on the list?". Still, it is a noble ambition. In terms of creating a separate list to the alphabetical list of British generals and brigadiers, why not include promotion dates (and possibly wars and sovereigns) in a sortable table and then all requirements can be met in one place? Finally I presume that your level of interest in the Royal Navy is comparatively low as I would personally work on a list of full admirals ahead of brigadier-generals. Greenshed (talk) 19:53, 19 February 2014 (UTC)

Well, yes, there would be tens of thousands of entries, so all requirements couldn't possibly be met just in one place. Trying to have a list of British generals aiming at any sort of completeness would require it to be split over several articles. The most obvious way to split the existing list of British generals and brigadiers would be by surname: list of British generals and brigadiers A–D, list of British generals and brigadiers E–M, etc. From your previous comments on that talk page I imagine you would prefer list of British Army full generals, list of British Army lieutenant-generals and list of British Army major-generals. Somebody else suggested list of British Army infantry generals, list of British Army cavalry generals..., and you've already contributed a list of Royal Flying Corps generals. I think all these have their place but that a chronological approach should be there too. Opera hat (talk) 21:43, 21 February 2014 (UTC)
With regard to lists of admirals: they should be there too, but one does have a full-time job! Again, I'd be more interested in listing all admirals serving at a particular time rather than by rank. Opera hat (talk) 21:49, 21 February 2014 (UTC)
I think we are generally in agreement - there are multiple valid approaches. I certainly agree that the chronological approach is very helpful to the reader who wishes to identify the list of generals / admirals / air marshals who were serving for any given conflict. I imagine that we will need to split up the list of all generals and brigadiers in some way - the down side with this is the usefulness of sortable columns is diminished. In any case we can cross that bridge when we get to it and as advances in bandwidth and browser technology mean that increasingly longer pages are readily viewable, the needs for lots of splitting up long lists will probably reduce over time. Greenshed (talk) 19:22, 22 February 2014 (UTC)

The past - why no sir[edit]

Fwiw - My memory of interminable arguments was a bodged compromise between the republican element of wiki that wanted no titles (in either naming or inline) and those who felt they were essential and the compromise fell around peerages being an inseparable part of the name but sir being an honorific title. Its a mess but what can we do. :-/ Garlicplanting (talk) 12:21, 19 April 2014 (UTC)

I agree that "Sir" shouldn't appear in the article title, but I don't see why it can't appear in the lead section. (E.g. article at Robert Gascoyne-Cecil, 3rd Marquess of Salisbury, but then starting with "Sir Robert Arthur Talbot Gascoyne-Cecil, 3rd Marquess of Salisbury KG GCVO...") It's always there for knights and baronets who aren't peers. Opera hat (talk) 12:37, 19 April 2014 (UTC)
I can see the argument. I suppose the present form is at least that used on official warrants etc eg the previous Earl Marshal was always the Most Noble Miles Francis Stapleton Duke of Norfolk Knight of the Most Noble Order of the Garter Garlicplanting (talk) 12:49, 19 April 2014 (UTC)
H'm yes, good point. And when the Duke of Wellington's title was recited at his funeral he was not "Sir Arthur". Opera hat (talk) 14:43, 19 April 2014 (UTC)
Thus it hath pleased Almighty God to take out of this transitory life unto His Divine Mercy the late Most High, Mighty, and Most Noble Prince, Arthur, Duke...Garlicplanting (talk) — Preceding undated comment added 11:38, 22 April 2014 (UTC)
Somewhat late to the conversation, but I think the norm for peers who are also knights is that they add the appropriate postnominals (KG, KCVO, KT etc) to their name instead. So, the current chancellor of the order would be James Hamilton, 5th Duke of Abercorn, KG, rather than Sir James Hamilton, 5th Duke of Abercorn or Sir James Hamilton, 5th Duke of Abercorn, KG. This is explained by Debrett's here: [1]. Sotakeit (talk) 09:24, 21 July 2014 (UTC)

Richards Dawson[edit]

Hallo Opera hat, and @BrownHairedGirl:, I noticed Richard Dawson (1855–1923) because Leeds East (UK Parliament constituency) is on my watchlist, and then found Richard Dawson (died 1766) and Richard Dawson (1762–1807). My reading of WP:QUALIFIER is that we add a birth or death date, after a comma, to a textual disambiguator: so Richard Dawson (Irish MP, born 1855) or ...(Irish MP, born 1855). I thought about renaming the three but decided to run it past you first. One argument against including date ranges is the hyphen/dash problem; it also seems more useful to include a description which instantly distinguishes them from an American soldier, missionary to Ghana, or whatever, as well as then adding a date to distinguish these three. Any thoughts? PamD 08:19, 26 June 2014 (UTC)

Hi PamD, thanks for pinging me.
I think that the guidance at WP:QUALIFIER doesn't take account for the situation with politics in Britain and Ireland up to the early 20th century, when an oligarchy of families had a dominant role, sometimes for centuries.
WP:QUALIFIER assumes that we are looking at a range of people with different occupations, of whom a small set share a lot of common characteristics. In practice, these cases tend to involve sets where most of the people share a lot of common characteristics.
In that case, WP:QUALIFIER clashes with WP:PRECISION: "usually, titles should be precise enough to unambiguously define the topical scope of the article, but no more precise than that". Adding "Irish MP" to the dab is unnecessary extra precision.
In the case of the Dawsons, the "Irish MP" title is misleading in a wider sense. These families got elected to Parliament not as a primary occupation, but as a consequence of their wealth and privilege, which until the 19th cent usually arose from land ownership. The fact that their articles focus currently focus on their political careers is merely a reflection of the underdeveloped state of the articles, rather than of the topic.
See for example James Balfour (died 1845), which I created a few days ago. The first save is mostly about him being an MP, but the current version of the article relgates that to a minor point about a life in which the main strands are early business success, land-owning, and the foundation of a political dynasty. His own career as an MP is relatively unimportant.
Another example of where WP:QUALIFER breaks down is with the Rashleigh family of Menabilly in Cornwall. Fowey was their pocket borough for about 150 years, and 8 men of that family were Fowey MPs, while a few more geld other seats. Few of the family appear to have been notable for much else, so adding "English MP" or "Cornish MP" to the bad is superfluous. It just creates a more clumsy, less intuitive disambiguator
So please, leave the Dawsons as they are :) --BrownHairedGirl (talk) • (contribs) 09:37, 26 June 2014 (UTC)
@BrownHairedGirl: I'm sorry to hear your views on this. I think James Balfour (Scottish politician) would be a better title. The practice of using dates only seems a horrible slippery slope towards dates being used instead of useful disambiguations, as there are many polymaths or people with portmanteau careers who can't be easily summarised in a single epithet, but where Wikipedia has traditionally done just that. We'll be finding people wanting to have a "Joe Bloggs (born 1982)" on the basis that he was a guitarist as well as an artist and then wrote a novel and took up a TV career, rather than picking one or the other to call him by in his article title. Not a wise precedent.
If we really must have disambiguations with dates, please stick to just a birth or a death, not the range, because of the hyphen-dash problem. Nothing at WP:QUALIFIER supports use of a date range. Yes, I can see you've made a redirect from Richard Dawson (1855-1923), but we both know that not many editors are as thorough as you are!
You argue that the Richards Dawson got elected to Parliament only as an incidental to the wealth and privilege from being landowners, so that "Irish MP" is not an appropriate disambiguation, but in Wikipedia terms are they perhaps only "Notable" because of the MP role? Or would there be enough other recorded information to justify an article without that? (I've had similar thoughts trying to stub-sort early American settlers, whose claim to notability seems to be just that they traceably existed: one at least was recently deleted at AfD).
I think the Jonathan Rashleigh articles would be better with titles "...(MP, born 1591)" etc. By your logic here and for Richard Dawson, the two David Baker poker players in the example at WP:QUALIFIER should perhaps be plain David Baker (born 1986) etc. In short, I think there should be text in all disambiguations, and am very sorry to see that you don't. But haven't the energy today to raise it to an RfC or anything. Just unhappy. PamD 14:17, 26 June 2014 (UTC)
@PamD: Your suggestion of James Balfour (Scottish politician) is a blue link, which illustrates another undesirable aspect of trying to remove dates as as disambiguators. The common alternatives chosen are often ambiguous, and over the last few weeks I have encountered dozens of instances where a biog has been moved to "Foo Bar (MP)", "Foo Bar (politician)", etc ... even tho those titles do not uniquely identify the person amongst the others listed on the dab page for that name.
That can be avoided by doing a bit of homework: checking the dab page, and checking what links to the proposed new title. But far too often editors don't do that, and the resulting messes with redlinks accidentally turned blue can get quite hard to disentangle. To try to avoid that, I have taken to blue-linking sone of the common ambiguous dabs.
Using both birth and death is much better, because it gives a much clearer picture of when someone was active, as well as enhancing precision. Where both are available, the convention
As to endashes, their use in date ranges is a long-standing part of the MOS. It would be a fairly simple job to get a bot to identify all the article titles with endashes, and check for those with don't have a direct from the hyphen. --BrownHairedGirl (talk) • (contribs) 16:11, 26 June 2014 (UTC)
I agree with BrownHairedGirl. "MP", "politician", "Scottish politician", etc are frequently insufficient disambiguation; lifespan usually is sufficient disambiguation; using both seems unnecessarily long-winded. But I can't say I've given it much thought. What is the reader going to search for? The name. In that case they'll get the disambiguation page, and from there it doesn't really matter what qualifier is tacked on the end of the name, as long as it gets them to the right person. PamD: what's the advantage to having "text in all disambiguations"? Why does it sadden you for this to be omitted? Opera hat (talk) 00:56, 27 June 2014 (UTC)

MfD nomination of Thomas Bere[edit]

Thomas Bere, a page you substantially contributed to, has been nominated for deletion. Your opinions on the matter are welcome; please participate in the discussion by adding your comments at Wikipedia:Miscellany for deletion/Thomas Bere and please be sure to sign your comments with four tildes (~~~~). You are free to edit the content of Thomas Bere during the discussion but should not remove the miscellany for deletion template from the top of the page; such a removal will not end the deletion discussion. Thank you. Kudpung กุดผึ้ง (talk) 11:29, 20 July 2014 (UTC)