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Astronomy magazine[edit]

Why we have disambig pages[edit]

The primary (some would say sole) purpose of a disambig page is to direct persons to the correct page. Additional links do not help (in most cases--there may be some exceptions). Excess verbiage simply takes longer for a reader to parse and unless it is necessary to help distinguish between the entries should be avoided. olderwiser 16:53, 2 January 2006 (UTC)

Additional links always help. Context is not excess verbage and is the first thing the reader is looking for, so should be placed first. Bensaccount 17:24, 2 January 2006 (UTC)
Certainly not; additional links distract from the purpose of a disambiguation page. It is not for exploration. It is a workaround for the failure of a link to take the reader directly to an article. As such, it should help the reader find that one article as quickly as possible, and not offer links to things which cannot possibly be that article. Michael Z. 2006-01-2 17:44 Z
Apparently you are another user who has seen this new format of disambiguation but never used or created one yourself. Disambiguation is not "a workaround for the failure of a link". You aren't supposed to link to disambiguation pages. They are a starting point for users who are looking for a term that has multiple meanings. Often the user does not know which meaning they want, so the context helps. Providing hyperlinks within the context enables the user to quickly find the context they are looking for without trial and error. Bensaccount 17:50, 2 January 2006 (UTC)
Apparently you are another user who has seen this new format of disambiguation but never used or created one yourself. That's rather absurdly presumptuous of you. I've both created and used countless disambig pages. I suspect the same is true of most of the regulars at WikiProject:Disambiguation. Disambiguation is not "a workaround for the failure of a link". You aren't supposed to link to disambiguation pages. But that is exactly the point. Because a link to a disambig page is almost by definition a bad link, the disambig page should enable users to identify the correct link as expeditiously as possible. Providing hyperlinks within the context enables the user to quickly find the context they are looking for without trial and error. Can you explain exactly how this works? I mean if there links to the properly disambiguated pages, optionally with a brief description, how is clicking around in tangentially related topics going to help the user to quickly find the context they are looking for? That seems almost contradictory on the face of it. olderwiser 18:02, 2 January 2006 (UTC)
Apparently you are another user who doesn't understand how Wikipedia works, Bensaccount. MOS:DP didn't just spring up while you were sleeping last night. By suggesting that we simply delete the policy at Wikipedia talk:Manual of Style (disambiguation pages)#Parallel policy, and then actively working against it here, you are ignoring consensus and wasting all of our time. Michael Z. 2006-01-2 18:23 Z

Bensaccount says above that "Additional links always help", whereas WP:D specifies the exact opposite. Take a look at the entry for Freddie Mercury. I followed the link to "pianist" and found that it's a person who plays the piano. This knowledge will be valuable to me at my next cocktail party, but it did not help me find Freddie, because Bensaccount had piped Freddie away, also in direct conflict with MoS:DP, for which I now have even more respect. Thanks, Bensaccount, for showing how valuable MoS:DP really is. Now please try to use it instead of destroying it. It may not immediately make you feel better, but it will help the readers. Chris the speller 03:09, 3 January 2006 (UTC)

Watery silver[edit]

Was or was it not mercury in which was called watery silver by the Greeks -- 00:51, 25 January 2006 (UTC)[]

The first sentence of Mercury (element) explains it. If a question remains, please use the Reference desk WP:RD. This page is for discussion about how to maintain the disambiguation page for Mercury.   Chris the speller 03:18, 25 January 2006 (UTC)

Requested move[edit]

The following discussion is an archived debate of the proposal. 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 debate was no consensus for move. Joelito (talk) 16:08, 18 September 2006 (UTC)

All other planets are not disambiguated in the title (eg. Venus not Venus (planet)) Mercury should be made consistant --GW_SimulationsUser Page | Talk 20:58, 12 September 2006 (UTC)


Add "* Support" or "* Oppose" followed by a brief explanation, then sign your opinion with ~~~~

  • Oppose. Neither Mercury (planet) nor Mercury (element) are primary topic. See also earlier Talk:Mercury (planet)#Page move and Talk:Mercury (planet)#Proposed move. Femto 21:17, 12 September 2006 (UTC)
  • Oppose per Femto and previous discussions. olderwiser 21:23, 12 September 2006 (UTC)
  • Oppose All the other planets don't have (planet) in their titles because the names of them don't have any other meanings that are just as common. This is not the case with Mercury, which is also the name of an element. Perhaps if Wikipedia allows article titles to appear lowercase in the future, we could have the element at mercury and the planet at Mercury, but as of yet, Wikipedia doesn't allow titles that are lowercase. Voortle 21:34, 12 September 2006 (UTC)
  • Oppose as per previous discussions. Why another voting?--JyriL talk 22:12, 12 September 2006 (UTC)
  • Oppose: one extra click for a reader to find the planet is not a big deal and disabig link repair is usually pretty easy because enough context is usually provided to dtermine the desired page.--Hraefen Talk 22:41, 12 September 2006 (UTC)
  • Oppose per above. Georgia guy 01:00, 13 September 2006 (UTC)
  • Oppose as above, the element is at least as important. -- Beardo 03:35, 13 September 2006 (UTC)
  • Oppose, Mercury (planet) isn't an obvious case of being more important than the element. - SpLoT 11:16, 17 September 2006 (UTC)


Add any additional comments

  • The dis-ambiguation page appears to be set up so that the god is the primary meaning. Any comments on the best arrangement?? Georgia guy 14:51, 16 September 2006 (UTC)
    • Well, that's the original meaning and where the term comes from. Voortle 15:48, 16 September 2006 (UTC)
The above discussion is preserved as an archive of the debate. 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.

Revamp of the lead section[edit]

Following up on one of the comments in the most recent move discussion, I have revamped the lead section to reflect the fact that there are three common references for the name "Mercury". While the planet and the element were named after the Roman deity, that does not mean that the deity is the primary definition. Arguably, in this day and age, the planet and the element are far more common references. As it was before, the links to the planet and the element were buried in amongst the other science terms, which are far less common. (Another argument in favour of the rewrite is evident in earlier move discussions; the most common argument for not moving the planet article was the significance of the element, with the deity as a secondary mention.) ---Ckatzchatspy 07:05, 2 October 2006 (UTC)

Good. --Apoc2400 09:40, 7 November 2006 (UTC)
I agree that chemical and astronomical meanings should have primacy, but the mythological name is now buried way down the page under "Other uses". I would restore it to third place in the lead section, since (1) it is still one of three primary meanings of the word, and (2) it is in a sense the primary meaning, as all other uses/meanings ultimately derive from the mythological Mercury and are linked by some connotation. Conveying a sense of the history of ideas is, I think, valuable. Fuzzypeg 02:10, 28 June 2010 (UTC)
Yes, I have restored the mythological deity to the third position. olderwiser 02:24, 28 June 2010 (UTC)
"It is still one of three primary meanings of the word"? Are you sure? Try to search for it in the British National Corpus or the Corpus of Contemporary American English, and you'll see that no more than a few percent of the occurrences of mercury in present-day English refer to him. (And if by "primary" you mean "oldest", the concept discussed at Speed is not the primary meaning of speed.[1]) ― A._di_M.3rd Dramaout (formerly Army1987) 07:22, 28 June 2010 (UTC)
I agree with its "demotion". Disambiguation pages should not be confused with articles, and conveying a sense of history is not valuable on disambiguation pages. Conveying a sense of direction is their purpose. And unless there is some contra-indicator that it is one of the three primary meanings, it should be in other uses. -- JHunterJ (talk) 11:22, 28 June 2010 (UTC)


I've reorganised some of the links. Still to be done to conform to the Manual of Style:

  • Biographical links should get their birth/death years attached.
  • All of those links about the Ford cars should get their own list page.
  • Possibly a link to Wiktionary? -- De Guerre (talk) 00:55, 21 May 2008 (UTC)
Scratch that, there was a list of Ford models. I also redid the Project Mercury links while I was there. --De Guerre (talk) 01:10, 21 May 2008 (UTC)


MERCURY IS THE CLOSEST PLANET TO THE SUN? —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 13 March 2009

Yes. See Template:Solar System if you're still confused. -- Quiddity (talk) 18:14, 13 March 2009 (UTC)

Include the automobile manufacturer?[edit]

Should we include the automobile manufacturer in the commonly refers to section? It seems like that would be a fairly common lookup. --BHC (talk) 20:34, 14 August 2009 (UTC)

I've added it - we'll see if anyone objects. Ego White Tray (talk) 04:06, 5 September 2012 (UTC)
I'd tentatively object. My edit summary was imperfect, but in essence: I don't believe that Mercury (automobile) matches the criteria needed to place it alongside the planet/element/god. For reference, WP:PRIMARYTOPIC and MOS:DABORDER are the relevant guidelines. I'd guess that Project Mercury and Bristol Mercury are equally common search-desires, when readers arrive here. I'm willing to be convinced, but am not currently. -- Quiddity (talk) 05:19, 5 September 2012 (UTC)

Freddie Mercury and Mercury (name)[edit]

I think Freddie Mercury is immensely hard to find now I think a people section with the links to Freddie Mercury and Mercury (name) is a good Idea.--Saehrimnir (talk) 17:06, 18 April 2013 (UTC)

Is Freddie Mercury commonly referred to simply as "Mercury"? I have not seen or heard this being done. Hamilton was given as an example, which I assume is referring to Alexander Hamilton. In this case, he is frequently referred to as simply "Hamilton". If you feel that the same is true for Freddie Mercury, please say so. Otherwise, I would argue that he only belongs under the name page and not here. -- Fyrael (talk) 17:11, 3 September 2013 (UTC)
Is Mercury Boulevard? Is Project Mercury (album)? Is Mercury Rev? Check out WP:D; this is pretty common practice. Red Slash 02:36, 4 September 2013 (UTC)
You can stop linking to the entire disambiguation article. If you look through my edits, you'll see I'm very familiar with the process. Yes, Mercury Boulevard and Project Mercury both seem like they would be referred to by the single name. Mercury Rev looks like a partial title match to me, which according to the page you keep linking should not be included. Whether or not the entry is sometimes called simply "Mercury" matters quite a lot, contrary to all your question marks. That's the basis for how a user arrives at this page: by just searching for "Mercury". Including partial title matches is actually not common practice and is not desirable. -- Fyrael (talk) 06:48, 4 September 2013 (UTC)
? I'm also very familiar with disambiguation pages, and I don't get the point of religiously eliminating all partial-title matches... truth be told, when someone has a common first name and an atypical last name it's rather typical to remember them primarily by the last name. "Oh, that singer guy, Mercury or something... what was his name? Let me type in 'mercury' and find out..." Red Slash 22:57, 4 September 2013 (UTC)


The usage and primary topic of "Mercury" is under discussion, see Talk:Mercury (planet) -- (talk) 05:03, 8 April 2016 (UTC)

A bit late to the horse race, as the discussion was closed two hours after this was posted. But I don't particularly object, since I agree with the result. Personally, if I had to choose a primary topic, I'd go with the god. But few people would join me, so going with no primary is probably best. P Aculeius (talk) 12:43, 8 April 2016 (UTC)
Yea, if this were a dictionary, we would pay attention to etymology and provenance , and the use in (mythology) would win hands down. At least I think so, as I'm assuming that the uses in both (element) and (planet) are derived from that one. Interestingly Mercury is the only element and the only planet to require a parenthetical disambiguator. The other 7 planets and the other 117 elements are WP:primary topics. YBG (talk) 06:53, 9 April 2016 (UTC)