|This is the talk page for discussing improvements to the Optio article.|
Why is there a sub-title that has been named as "Notes" but has no actual notes under it. It is just blank: therefore has no reason to exist. It is suggestable that this sub-title is removed, as a result. —Preceding unsigned comment added by 184.108.40.206 (talk) 17:56, 29 May 2008 (UTC)
While I find this article informative and well-written, I don't know how the claims made here relate to the link provided as a reference.
I'm somewhat new to editing Wiki articles, so excuse me, and please do correct me, if I'm making any faux pas here.
There is a single reference link that I believe leads to a 1767 British translation of a text titled De Re Mlitari written by Flavius Vegetius Renatus in 390 AD. I say I believe it leads there because the link is broken. But following the broken link I can find what seems to be the intended text. However I am not sure how the editor of the Wiki article meant this to be used. I see that it is a footnote for a quote by Vegetius, but is it also implied that the information in the rest of the article comes from that work? And if the other information is not attributed to Vegetius, where did it come from?
I am truly curious to know how the list of different optios was compiled and how the description of the uniforms was surmised. I looked for the information in De Re Militari, but it is very long. I did find a section on the optio, but it was very brief. So are these lists and descriptions based on the ancient text? If they are not, where can I find that information for myself?
As a classicist, I would ideally like to see footnotes that refer to primary sources for factual matters, such as titles given to soldiers and the uniforms they wore. Should I expect the same of Wikipedia, or is that more intensive than Wiki standars require? Is it acceptable to cite a list of titles or description of a uniform to a secondary source? Certainly it is unacceptable to not cite these things at all, which seems to be the case here.
If the article doesn't provide sufficient citations, it should be taken down. While all of the information has the "feel" of accuracy to me, a person who is quite famliar with the ancient Roman world, I could never use this in any scholalry way because of its lack of verifiability. If the article is properly cited in the sense that all of its information comes from Vegetius, it would still be too laborious to pour over the entire lengthy text trying to verify the footnote-less claims in the article.
Frankly, it seems that all of the information in the article was taken from an unattributed author, and a small quote was thrown in to give it an air of authority and to prevent the article from being without citation entirely. Should we refrain from taking it down simply because it "looks" accurate, and we want to have an article on the optio, so anything will do? I say take it down until it is verifiable, but I have a feeling that's not what the denizens of Wikipedia want.
I know that all of the above is tantamount to , but I feel passionately about the classics and came here looking for knowledge, not the simulacrum of knowledge. I may be able to help improve this and other articles, but first I hve to know that others think they actually need improving.