Portal talk:Classical civilisation

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WikiProject Classical Greece and Rome (Rated Portal-class)
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Portal links[edit]

P:CC should only have permanent direct links to really major things. We can't add every classics article on this page: is the "Antikythera mechanism" as significant as the Roman Republic? Additionally, history and geography are generally too unrelated. Geography/geology would be better merged with archaeology. Organising articles into categories and subcategories would be really useful. That way, we can end each section with More..., linking to the appropriate category. --Nema Fakei 17:38, 6 March 2006 (UTC)

Granted we sub catagorise (as you and I have tried to do), but i think that the detail is appropriate. The antikythera mechanism isn't as important as the Roman Republic...but then the two aren't in the same catagory, just the same portal. The only way to reduce the number of 'unimportant' links would be to add sub pages - e.g.

instead of formating

In the meanwhile, until this is resolved, i've expanded the links. Pydos 16:41, 7 March 2006 (UTC)

When I say categorise, I mean use the 'Category:' namespace better - so [[Category:Greek Comedy]] should include all articles on Greek Comedy, and should be a member of [[Category:Greek Theatre]] and [[Category:Comedy, if it exists]]. So yes, what I'm effectively suggesting is make subpages to reduce the number of links: we need only include major entries: nontrivial authors, important cities, and links to 'Category:' pages.
Fair enough. Do you want to do this one then? Pydos 12:39, 8 March 2006 (UTC)
Oh, my god! There are almost 600 categories on Ancient Greece! Are there even 600 articles? This is ridiculous. They were all posted in one go by "Choalbaton". Hm. Some may be duplicates, but still, this is too many, categories are being used where lists (or even simple links) will do, and no new user could possibly comprehend that sort of stucture. Worse, categories are indelible and immovable!--Nema Fakei 14:37, 8 March 2006 (UTC)
Ok, I've created a template so that the categories will integrate a bit better with the portal, and won't leave users too much in the dark as to what the strange construct of a category is doing. I've only put it in Category:Classical studies.--Nema Fakei 02:54, 9 March 2006 (UTC)
Update: Included category browsebar and portal icon; added the template to philosophy categories. Currently playing around with the category structures. --Nema Fakei 02:09, 12 March 2006 (UTC)
One of the main reasons i created this portal was to try and make things simpler to understand, because there is so much 'classics' stuff on wikipedia. I like what you've done with the Category page - extremely logical and cogent. Pydos 10:34, 12 March 2006 (UTC)
For the record are we sure the browsebar is a good idea? There was a hell of a fuss when 'Go For It' tried it, and it looks messy, because we are the only portal doing it. See Matt's talk page for the interchange between GoForIt and Matt. Pydos 10:34, 12 March 2006 (UTC)
We were just about the only portal without any browsebar at all. The extended browsebar is my own innovation (though I wouldn't be surprised if it's been tried before), but I've posted a message in Wikipedia talk:Portals to see if I can get it onto other portals. I can't seem to find the conversation you're referring to, though.--Nema Fakei 11:50, 12 March 2006 (UTC)
Ah i know what he's done. Matt must have removed the conversation when he rolling back GoForIt's edits in which GoForIt added a browsebar to EVERY portal, which caused a ruckus. The conversation was in December 2005...checking the original address history you should be able to find what the conversation was about. Are we really one of the few portals with no browsebar? I thought the plan was that we used the portal menu link at the bottom of the main page(extant). Pydos 17:56, 12 March 2006 (UTC)


On a related note, Socrates is regularly vandalised, so I've made it a permanent link. Don't want new classicists reading about his 500 prostitutes or whatever the last one was.--Nema Fakei 17:36, 7 March 2006 (UTC)

Yeah. We could also make it an important page as well (see Pythagoras for what i mean). Pydos 12:39, 8 March 2006 (UTC)
On the subject of permanence, we could do with choosing a new featured person...Socrates has done his job since Christmas, and I feel we need a change. Any ideas who? Pydos 17:56, 12 March 2006 (UTC)

Odyssey and Aeneid[edit]

Wouldn't writing a comparison be considered original research? I mean, we could include some obvious things like number of lines and number of books, but I'm not really sure we should be going much further.--Nema Fakei 22:38, 13 March 2006 (UTC)

Damn my plan for homework foiled! No seriously I thought it would be a fair point...since we have pages for one and the other, and the ancients used to discuss the similarities and differences of the two. I'd forgotten the original research rule of wikipedia however and i think its sailing too close to the wind. Pydos 17:04, 14 March 2006 (UTC)

I can help. They are both written in dactylic (or heroic) hexameter. Not much but I am not much of Classics scholar, although I would like to be.

It's ok we've dropped this particular project. If you want to be useful i recommend reading the Odyssey page, or expanding the Aeneid page (which i keep on meaning to get on with). Thanks anyway. Pydos 13:46, 29 May 2006 (UTC)

Help, Classical demography[edit]

I need help finding sources (ancient or modern) for Classical demography. By sources I mean either primary, secondary...or if modern they must be peer-reviewed by a reputable academic paper. If you are going to a university chances are you have access to these kind of databases. What I'm stuck with, is the population of the Seleucid Empire and Magna Graecia. Thanks in advance...and if you could contribute to that article in any other way that would be great. Sean WI 19:24, 14 March 2006 (UTC)

Evidence that a Classical demographer might want to use, evidence that classical demography took place, or simply demographic data? I'm not sure what you're asking. "What I'm stuck with, is the population of the Seleucid Empire and Magna Graecia" Do you mean that you only have these articles, or that you lack data for these? --Nema Fakei 21:20, 14 March 2006 (UTC)
Sorry, demographic data is what I was looking for. I lack the data (at least academic data) pertaining to Magna Graecia and the Seleucid Empire. I guess it's not just data I'm looking for....really anybody with a working knowledge of the subject in general to help out. Sean WI 21:32, 14 March 2006 (UTC)


Is it just me, or are the boxes out of alignment on the page? I mean seriously mis-aligned - skewed two thirds to the right and often on top of each other? This seems to be recent, but i can't see how, or why, it happened. Pydos 14:01, 15 March 2006 (UTC)

Looks fine to me; I'm using Firefox 1.5; you?--Nema Fakei 15:58, 15 March 2006 (UTC)
Microsoft int explorer. Don't laugh - it's my school network. Pydos 16:48, 16 March 2006 (UTC)
Ya - Page is off in IE - Ravenous 17:41, 29 March 2006 (UTC)
Thank god for that. Thought it was just my computer! Any idea on how to fix it? Pydos 10:38, 30 March 2006 (UTC)
I found the problem and took care of it. While I was at it, I went ahead and changed the color of the boxes, I hope you don't mind. This way the portal is more distinguished (and is easier to read than white on light-blue). It's a grey/blue I've been using on the ancient greek plays. The page could use some more design improvements - let me know if you'd like a hand with that. - Ravenous 06:45, 31 March 2006 (UTC)
I like the new changes. Naturally the portal could do with more style/programming work, but discuss any plans here first just in case. Many Thanks. Pydos 19:12, 31 March 2006 (UTC)


Should this be renamed to Portal:Ancient history or Portal:Antiquity (or even Portal:Classical antiquity)? It should have some corresponding article. Moreover, it does contravene Mos naming conventions.--cj | talk 04:25, 2 April 2006 (UTC)

I note the concern, but draw your attention to the following, which is from the MOS; "Names of Wikipedia articles should be optimized for readers over editors; and for a general audience over specialists.". This portal is meant to be more specific than 'Portal:Ancient History', and i feel 'Portal:Classical antiquity' and 'Portal:Antiquity' just don't sound right. Note also that Classical Civilisation is the name of the course that most people take (or classics granted). Pydos 15:36, 4 April 2006 (UTC)
Sorry that I don't speak well English. So "Classical Civilisation" only concerns Greek + Rome? From the name only, I thought it was about All Civilization that lived some thousand years ago. 13:31, 12 April 2006 (UTC)
I do speak English well, and I think "Classical Antiquity" would be a much better name. Wareh 02:45, 15 October 2006 (UTC)


We currently have an odd mismatch of names: Classical Civilisation Portal, Classical Studies category, and Classical Antiquity article. Are there any objections to changing the latter two to match the former? --Nema Fakei 11:03, 22 April 2006 (UTC)

Not from me, but we will need to stop whoever keeps changing the spelling to civilization. At least for the minute, lets keep it the same. And yes to the user who does this i am aware of the OED convention!!! Pydos 11:51, 26 April 2006 (UTC)
Somebody has to decide the scope of the Portal. Is it all Ancient history? Just Classical Antiquity, including archaeology and military history? Or just the culture of the classical antiquity period? The current name isn't a good fit. And the portal is on w-a-y too many categories!
--William Allen Simpson 02:18, 26 May 2006 (UTC)
Well, by any normal definition, it'd include everything in Greco-Roman culture from language to literature to military history to geography and archaeology. Timewise, I'd say between about 1600BC and 400AD.--Nema Fakei 11:19, 26 May 2006 (UTC)


The area at the bottom of the portal is a bit of a mess... shouldn't it be put in boxes like the rest of the page to tidy it up and to match the presentation. Sotakeit 16:54, 2 April 2006 (UTC)

I think it'll need to remain a mess for a little longer, while we add major articles. Once that's done, we can shift sections between the columns and balance them out. Unless you can programme a better alternative? --Nema Fakei 10:57, 18 April 2006 (UTC)


Would the keepers of this portal be interested in linking to Eric A. Havelock? It's a featured article (under the philosophy category), and our only FA on a classicist. Thanks. Chick Bowen 00:34, 18 April 2006 (UTC)

Portals, templates and categories[edit]

An exchange from my user page. CalJW 13:24, 18 April 2006 (UTC)

Category:Ancient Rome[edit]

I noticed you've removed the Classical Civilisation Category template from a few categories. I've been working my way through the Class Civ categories inserting the thing for use as a navigational aid, partly in an attempt to support the associated portal (P:CC). I'd be grateful if you had any advice as to making the template less "messy", as you put it, or perhaps making it more standardised (It's based on the portal templates). At the moment, the Class civ category tree is pretty big and poorly standardised. I've made some efforts to clean it up, but if you can make any suggestions for improvement, they would be much appreciated. The best place to put them would likely be in Category:Classical_studies or, better, Portal_talk:Classical_Civilisation (since it's visited by a modicum of editors). --Nema Fakei 12:16, 18 April 2006 (UTC)

I suggest two things:
  • Link each category to the Classical civilisation portal by adding {{portalpar|Classical Civilisation}} at the top of the page. I will do a few now.
  • Continue to work on the category system, which is not yet as close to maturity as are those for many other topic areas, but needs to be done some time. I might help out if I have time.

I think the top "article space" in category pages should be kept quite clean and it is usual practice across Wikipedia to do that. All the major navigation methods in Wikipedia are valuable, but people who arrive in a category have chosen to use categories just then and it seems inappropriate to me to make an alternative navigation tool highly intrusive at that point. A better and more standard location for the template is at the bottom of articles. CalJW 13:20, 18 April 2006 (UTC)

How would that be done, though? The "article" comprises just the top of the page, at least, as far as the software is concerned. As to whether it's an alternative navigation tool, I would argue it's just a way of co-ordinating the category system better. Moreover, it may not be so much a conscious choice of using the category system instead of the portal: almost no articles link to the portal (nor should they, apart from certain ones with obvious identity), so people reading classical articles may not even be aware of the portal's existence - but they know about the categories. Plus, I was hoping that the category and portal system could work together and complement each other rather than compete (I realise that was probably not exactly what you meant): that is, the portal system should co-ordinate editors' efforts and (as far as the reader is concerned) act as a 'front page' for Wikipedia's classics articles, while categories act as complete listings. In order to be effective, there should be some way of getting between the category system and the portal, else it defeats the point of having a portal.--Nema Fakei 11:03, 22 April 2006 (UTC)

Another thing you should be aware of if you are not already is that you can request name changes for categories at categories for deletion - as well as deletions of course. I should have said before it is not the template itself which I was calling messy, indeed I wouldn't object to it being expanded, but simply positioning it at the top of category pages, where such templates are not usually seen. CalJW 13:52, 18 April 2006 (UTC)

Ah, thankyou. I didn't know that. --Nema Fakei 11:03, 22 April 2006 (UTC)

Greek Wikisource[edit]

I've added a proposal at meta for a Greek wikisource for texts. I note it here in order to garner a little support from people who might be interested in getting classical texts online. Please add your name to the supporters - or the contributors, if you're able to help adding to texts! --Nema Fakei 19:09, 24 May 2006 (UTC)

why!! The Civilisation/Civilization Debate[edit]

Why is "civilization" miss spelled?

  • do NOT change "civilisation" to "civilization".

why is this on? any logic in this?

Civilisation not mis-spelled. Civilization is a US variant. Plus, trying to change things in the article just results in templates not working: we've had editors who persistently change 's' to 'z' with the result that our nice neat boxes disappear and are replaced with ugly red links.--Nema Fakei 08:31, 5 June 2006 (UTC)
Umm, Nema, while i take your point about our nice templates turning red...the Oxford English Dictionary does allow the 'ize' inflection in British English. However if someone does adjust the spelling can they please fix the template!!! (viz OED). Pydos 13:32, 5 June 2006 (UTC)
Thanks, I've amended my comment appropriately. WP policy is broadly that once a legitimate term is used in one dialect or spelling, it shouldn't be needlessly 'corrected' to another. The exceptions are if the subject is inherently conducive to one dialect (e.g. Canada should be written in Canadian English). --Nema Fakei 15:31, 5 June 2006 (UTC)
Looks like civilization is 5 times more common than civilisation on google. I don't think people are going to stop changing it anytime soon, even with the warnings it continues to happen. It might make it easier on you all if you just went ahead and spelled it with the Z to avoid the page getting broken on a regular basis. - Ravenous 20:15, 5 June 2006 (UTC)
Ravenous' point is well taken. Perhaps as a user of US English I am unaware of the commonality of "s" over "z." Still, I think the point about Google (or other searches engines" is relevant. SkipperClipper 02:15, 29 March 2007 (UTC)

Lets have the more common variant, Civilization not Civilisation its so disconcerting I was gunna change it when i first saw it.

What is the correct pronunciation..[edit]

..of the word Tacitus?

1. Is the "c" a hard K sound or a soft S sound? 2. Does the last syllable rhyme with "bus" or with "loose"? --Peripatetic 16:21, 6 June 2006 (UTC)

The correct pronunciation is [ˈtakitʊs], i.e. 'hard' 'c' and short u (as in bus). However, in English, it's more normal to use an 's' sound for the 'c'.--Nema Fakei 17:41, 6 June 2006 (UTC)

Little Help?[edit]

Hi, I'm Horatius in it:wiki ([1]). (First, sorry for the wrecked rest of my once rather good english). I'm editing some Roman Battles. Here in List_of_Roman_battles I've found Battle of Ciuna with no further info about the facts. Can anyone help? I just need to know wich battle it should be in Livy "ab Urbe condita libri" (and "prove" it). In Battle of Lautulae I see that Ciuna happened a year after Lautulae but I can't find any link to such a name (Livy never write "Ciuna"). Who wrote this name? Appianus?. I wrote to the author of the stub and to someone of the military specialist but the "author" sems to be disappeared ... In it.wiki "Battaglia di Ciuna" had been cancelled waiting for more exact info. If this is not the right place to write please forward this message. Sorry for disturbing. Thanks. Vale! Horatius. —The preceding unsigned comment was added by (talkcontribs) . --Slgr@ndson (page - messages - contribs) 20:01, 25 June 2006 (UTC)

Shameless Plug[edit]

Hi, I've been trying to augment the Category:Ancient Greek pottery section, which I feel is an important subject somewhat neglected and would appreciate any effort that might be directed towards it.Twospoonfuls 13:12, 14 August 2006 (UTC)

incorrect capitalisation in portal title[edit]

This may not seem very important because a portal is not an article, but the incorrect capitalisation in the portal title is a bad model that produces new pages with incorrect capitalisation and wastes the time of editors who need to correct and discuss and move and CfD etc. - a huge waste of time. I didn't just move this page because i don't have time to fix all the redirects on my own. Who wants to help? --Espoo 16:32, 8 November 2006 (UTC)

Selected article[edit]

The Oddyssey on the portal page was in small type, and had many letters that did not fit. I removed these because they did not seem to belong there. If they were supposed to be there, please revert my edit. Thank you. | AndonicO Talk | Sign Here 12:38, 23 November 2006 (UTC)

Category:Ancient Greek pottery[edit]

I wonder if I am the only person who is somewhat annoyed at the dog's breakfast of bitty sub-categories that user Neddyseagon has made of this category? Was there really any ambiguity to the meaning of the Dipylon inscription that it required to be placed in splended isolation in a category of 2 items? Can we please put an end to this viral multiplication of categories; they add nothing to knowledge or searchability.Twospoonfuls 23:17, 1 December 2006 (UTC)

List of Ancient Greek poets[edit]

Here's something the portal might want to link to: I've just created a List of Ancient Greek poets. Anyone with an interest in that topic may want to look at the page and its Talk:List of Ancient Greek poets. Noroton 17:11, 4 March 2007 (UTC)

New Portal[edit]

Hello there. I'm The Random Editor. I recently created The Roman Empire Portal. All help building it would be appreciated. Thanks. --Tλε Rαnδom Eδιτor (ταlκ) 18:18, 21 June 2007 (UTC)

Indo-Greek Kingdom[edit]

The Indo-Greek Kingdom article, which is currently FA, is under FA review at Wikipedia:Featured article review/Indo-Greek Kingdom. Opinions are welcome. PHG 20:14, 21 October 2007 (UTC)