Talk:Syracuse

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Jump to: navigation, search
WikiProject Disambiguation
WikiProject icon This page is within the scope of WikiProject Disambiguation, an attempt to structure and organize all disambiguation pages on Wikipedia. If you wish to help, you can edit the page attached to this talk page, or visit the project page, where you can join the project or contribute to the discussion.
 

Archived discussion[edit]

  • Archive 1- Discussion on whether "Syracuse" should redirect to "Syracuse, Italy", including straw poll.
  • Archive2- more of Archive 1 with discussion as to the name of Syracuse, Italy

cities vs. municipalities[edit]

Why are Syracuse, Kansas, Syracuse, Missouri, Syracuse, Nebraska, and Syracuse, Utah defined in the current disambiguation article as specifically not cities. They are all chartered as cities, and thus have the same legal standing as the city in New York. They are obviously small, but there is no definition I'm aware of that says something has to be big to be a city. john k 18:06, 18 July 2006 (UTC)

Good point... Now how should be address this...? -newkai | talk | contribs 09:22, 19 July 2006 (UTC)
I'm restoring this from Achive 2, as it was never addressed. Any further thoughts on this? I agree with John that the headings are misleading. olderwiser 15:25, 4 August 2006 (UTC)
Fixed. Powers 15:55, 4 August 2006 (UTC)
Looks good now and makes sense! -newkai t-c 16:09, 4 August 2006 (UTC)

Province of Syracuse[edit]

The Province of Syracuse needs to find it's way onto this page. This is the greater area around Syracuse, Italy. Thanks in advance for trying to get this on the page --T-rex 02:05, 15 August 2006 (UTC)

How about right after the mention of Syracuse, Italy... "Syracuse, Italy, capital of the Province of Syracuse" -newkai t-c 02:19, 15 August 2006 (UTC)

Syracuse, South Carolina[edit]

I'm finding no evidence that such a place exists ... google hasn't heard of it, and I've removed it from the list. If someone learns otherwise, please add it back, hopefully with references. -- Prove It (talk) 03:04, 7 February 2007 (UTC)

funny, I found it with a google map search here. I think it's probably one of those town that if you sneeze while driving through... you'll miss it. re-added. Naufana : talk 17:39, 11 September 2007 (UTC)

pictures?[edit]

Is there any special reason why there are pictures in the disambig page? Off the top of my head, I'm not aware of any other such page that contains pictures. I'm removing them for now. Naufana : talk 17:45, 11 September 2007 (UTC)

Okay, I discovered it's policy to, generally, not include images in disambig pages per MOS:DAB#Images. Naufana : talk 19:27, 11 September 2007 (UTC)

corrected the alphabetical order (don't kill me)[edit]

Just noting here after reading the archive drama that I moved Syracuse, NY above Syracuse, Sicily on the disambiguation page so that the two are in correct alphabetical order as the items in the minor towns/communities listed are... Just jotting this down here so that a cat fight doesn't stir up again about this page since NY's Syracuse is now listed "first". Nothing to do with preference, just correct alphabetical classification. Thanks. MartinDuffy 07:52, 14 September 2007 (UTC)

Animagentile, please avoid patriotism here. Syracuse, NY comes first in alphabetical order and is a larger city, so it has to come first. --Twilight 04:34, 8 February 2008 (UTC)

Syracuse, the Sicilian one was once a city state like Athens, Sparta, etc. This is the most notable one and as thus should be first. Nobody outside of the eastern part of the USA has even heard of the USA one. Revelance is the most important measuring, in fact Syracuse should go straight to the Sicilian city. Absoutely nothing notable about the New York one (which stole its name from the Sicilian) on the world stage or the history books. - Animagentile (talk) 09:04, 8 February 2008 (UTC)
The thing that is notable about Syracuse, New York is that it gets over 20,000 more hits per month then Syracuse, Sicily: Syracuse, Sicily was viewed 4,985 times in February 2008 and 5,471 times in March 2008, while Syracuse, New York was viewed 25,658 times in February 2008 and 28,060 times in March 2008. So "Syracuse" should absolutely not redirect to the Italian city; there is a much larger number of readers looking for the one in New York. It is level readership that is by far the most important measuring. -- Raime 03:16, 23 April 2008 (UTC)
Gennarous - I fought the good fight on this subject, it's now over and done with. We ended up with a situation where no one should have priority over the name "Syracuse". As long as the original and almost 3,000 year old Syracuse retains it's current position on the disambig page, we should not have any further complaint. If the NY Syracuse still exists in 3,000 years time, we might all choose to revisit the subject (in terms of rearranging the order of the listing). πιππίνυ δ - (dica) 03:50, 23 April 2008 (UTC)
I don't even think that Syracuse, Sicily should be listed first; a much larger portion of readers are seeking Syracuse, New York, so why should their search not be facilitated? If age or the city being first to be named as such had anything to with our naming conventions, then "Syracuse" would be located at the city in Italy. But, they don't. The only thing that matters here is readership, and the city in New York has more readers. -- Raime 11:23, 23 April 2008 (UTC)
If we were to use your criterion as the main one, there would be 10,000s of entries that need to be recast. How many names in popular culture have been pillaged directly from history, or place names, or the like? Lots. Just because a stack of college students want to look up their campus on wikipedia doens't actually make it more significant in encyclopaedic terms. Imagine their surprise when they come to the page and see that a little place in Sicily stole their name!! That these same students know little of the outside world is not a basis for ordering an encyclopaedia, that is, if one is truly serious of creating a fair dinkum one. If we're not, than it's a pointless argument either way! πιππίνυ δ - (dica) 12:39, 23 April 2008 (UTC)
This page is to discuss only Syracuse. Please discuss the "10,000s of entries that need to be recast" elsewhere. Wikipedia should not direct readers to an article they are not seeking. The fact that Syracuse, New York gets fice times as many hits as Syracuse, Sicily clearly shows that Syracuse, Sicily is not the primary topic. Our purpose is not to discern whether readers are "educated enough" about the outside world; it is to aid them, college students who want to look at their campus city or not, in their search for the target article. A disambiguation page is clearly the optimal solution here. -- Raime 19:05, 23 April 2008 (UTC)

Why the Sicilian city should be located as "Syracuse"[edit]

I have attempted to just pretend this situation/insult to civilisation didn't exist and just pretended "Syracuse" was the location of the Sicilian city's article. But now I will speak on it, because this is literally a battle between the noble history of human civilization against ignorance. The only reason this situation is where it is, because User:Newkai, hadn't "heard" of the historic city. How people like Newkai and Raime thinks this is "correct" is entirely absurd to my eyes. The level of this insult, would be akin to having "Rome" go to a disambiguation for the sake of some obscure city like Rome, Georgia.

Below I will present, why the Sicilian city is THE Syracuse and why it should be located at that heading.

  • It is listed by UNESCO as a World Heritage Site, one of the most important cultural recognition achievements possible. UNESCO say "monuments and archeological sites situated in Syracuse are the finest example of outstanding architectural creation spanning several cultural aspects; Greek, Roman and Baroque", following on that real Syracuse was "directly linked to events, ideas and literary works of outstanding universal significance".
  • Noted historically as one of the major powers of the ancient world, surpassed in power in the Mediterranean only by Rome, Athens and Carthage.[1] We're talking about a city which exorted influence over the entire Magna Grecia region, the reason why Grecian cities such as Naples were able to grow and secure a future.
  • It was mentioned in the Bible itself in Acts 28:12 as Paul one of the Apostles of Christ stayed there. We're talking about one of the 12 apostles of GOD MADE FLESH, defining it as notable. Its notability is literally BIBLICAL. 2 billion people on this earth are Christians and the book which their religion is defined in has a part on Syracuse, how is that for "hits"???
  • The birth place and lifeplace of Archimedes one of the most famous humans to ever live. Also the birth place of Saint Lucy whos day Saint Lucy's Day is celebrated around the globe. The birth place of comedy, thanks to Epicharmus. Had its own line of Tyrants of Syracuse, akin in some ways to kings.

What is so notable about Syracuse, New York that this situation should be allowed to exist? Absoutely nothing. In fact 1/4th of the text in that article's intro, is riding on the legacy of the Sicilian city and the fact that the Sicilian city is mentioned in the bible. Seriously, Wikipedia is a great place for information, but when things like this exist, then one can only feel huge embarassment. - Gennarous (talk) 17:36, 23 April 2008 (UTC)

It is an "insult to civilization" to not direct the majority readers to an article they are not searching for? Then why do we even have disambiguation pages? Editors can simply decide which article is culturally superior, and set it as the main article regardless of readership statistics, leaving readers who are looking for a different article to fend for themselves. What I believe is "correct" is for readers to be directed to the article they wish to read. In this case, the majority of readers are not looking for Syracuse, Sicily, so that should not be located at Syracuse. Here are my replies to your above points:
  • Whether a city is a UNESCO World Heritage Site has nothing to do with Wikipedia's naming conventions. The fact that a place is one of the "most important cultural recognition achievements possible" does not necessarily mean that it will receive more readers than another place of the same name, which is clearly the situation here.
  • Historical influence has nothing to do with Wikipedia's naming conventions.
  • The fact that a place is mentioned in the Bible has nothing to do with Wikipedia's naming conventions.
  • The fact that a place was the birth place and lifeplace of Archimedes, one of the most famous humans to ever live, has nothing to do with Wikipedia's naming conventions.
If cultural importance, famous residents, etc. had anything to do with Wikipedia's naming conventions, then your above points would be legitimate. But they do not. The one and only legitimate consideration here is the likelihood that someone searching for "Syracuse" seeks a particular article. The thing that is obviously notable about Syracuse, New York, all historical, population, cultural, etc. aspects aside, is that it receives over 20,000 readers more per month than Syracuse, Sicily. Should Syracuse, Sicily be moved to Syracuse, 20,000 readers would be redirected to the wrong article. That is unacceptable. -- Raime 19:21, 23 April 2008 (UTC)
Since Syracure, New York must be disambiguated, it hardly makes a difference whether you have to through a dab page or a dabnote at the top of a Syracuse article. Wikipedia is not decided by what a majority of users are looking for. After all, a majority of users probably care more about Troy the recent film than Troy the ancient city. Or how many are looking for the USA when they type "America"?
  • UNESCO testifies to Syracuse' importance, whether people know how important it is or not.
  • Mention in the Bible is a sign of notability, which is related to naming.
The likelihood that someone is searching for a term has no bearing on anything. See America exampel above. 20,000 more readers already have a dab page to go through, let them go through a dab notice at the top of this page. Should we be constantly checking to make sure article titles correspond to hits? How more people looking for George Bush mean the current president and not his father? Srnec (talk) 17:21, 24 April 2008 (UTC)
Yes, it makes a huge difference. By your logic, it would also hardly make a difference whether "Syracuse" redirects to Syracuse, New York, with a dab link to Syracuse, Sicily (For the record, I am also very against that solution). 25,000 readers should not be redirected to the wrong article for the facilitation of 5,000 other readers' searches. Wikipedia is decided by what a majority of users are looking for. The reason "America" doesn't redirect to United States is because there is a majority of users who feel that "America" refers to the continents just as much as the country. And perhaps "Troy" should be moved, but if so that will be decided at the Troy talk page.
  • What people are looking for is all that matters:

    Generally, article naming should prefer what the greatest number of English speakers would most easily recognize, with a reasonable minimum of ambiguity, while at the same time making linking to those articles easy and second nature.

    25,000 readers look for Syracuse, New York. 5,000 readers look for Syracuse, Sicily. The Sicilian city, while historically and culturally "superior" (I am happy to admit that), is simply not the primary topic here. "Importance" is not noted at WP:NC all. "Whether people know it is important or not" and decide to look at the article accordingly is, in fact, all that matters.
  • The naming conventions have nothing to do with notability. Again, the only thing that matters is what readers are looking for.
I am surprised that editors would consider having "Syracuse" located at an article which is clearly not the primary topic among readers, and would thus be a clear violation of official Wikipedia policy. A dab notice would be a poor solution - perhaps we should then consider placing a dab notice at the top of Syracuse, New York to Syracuse, Sicily? That would be an equally poor solution, as Syracuse, New York is not the primary topic either. Feel free to bring up any discussion about "George Bush" at Talk:George Bush; perhaps that situation should be changed, although I doubt it. But given that the naming conventions are related only to what the majority of readers are looking for, checking article hits is a very appropriate thing to do. -- Raime 20:23, 24 April 2008 (UTC)
The thing you seem to have overlooked in this dillusional "nothing existed before the USA" stuff is, the statistics for hits to this disambiguation page itself is actually lower than the number for "Syracuse, New York".[2] Which means the majority of USA uni students in the state of New York who wish to look up the obscure USA city, are getting there without going through "Syracuse" first, according to the statistics. That shoots down your whole argument in a major way. So the wild claim that people would be directed towards the "wrong" article holds no water.
How many of the people who think "oh Wikipedia, this seems to be a serious tool for education... lets see what they have on the ancient power Syracuse, where Archimedes was born"... and type in Syracuse, only to come to this insult of disambiguation, then proceed no further because they think it must be a total joke and not a serious education tool at all?
As the situation is, "Syracuse, Sicily" does not follow the correct naming convention. Because "Syracuse" predates the idea of "Sicily" as a unified entity, it was a CITY STATE, understand? Independent with tyrants of its own. It wasn't called "Syracuse, Sicily" or "Syracuse, Italy", just Syracuse. The equivelent would be having the French article at "France, European Union". The correct title for the obscure NY city is "Syracuse, New York", as it is in every language. because it has never been a notable independent power or anything like that. So Syracuse belongs at the former powerful city state which is featured in the Bible. - Gennarous (talk) 14:23, 25 April 2008 (UTC)
Gennarous' last argument is the one I gave a year ago: the American city is "Syracuse, New York" always. The Sicilian city is just "Syracuse" historically. Since nobody believes in moving Syracuse, New York to Syracuse (which is what Raime's argument amounts to, since that is what he believs most people to be looking for when they type "Syracuse"), I suggest moving Syracuse, Sicily here. Then we place a note at the top of page that looks like this: {{for|the New York city|Syracuse, New York}}{{otheruses}}. This is no more work for anybody unless they'r looking for one of the minor Syracuses. Srnec (talk) 17:40, 25 April 2008 (UTC)

Arbitrary break[edit]

"Syracuse" can mean a great number of things. Cities are supposed to have a common way of being titled as page names (see here). Because more than one city is named Syracuse, it is simpler and theoretically noncontroversial (though obviously not true in practice) to make a disambiguation page be the first/main page. That way, no one is redirected away from what they want, then have to click the disambig page, and then the page they want. Yes, everyone has to make one more click, but no one has to click more than once. —ScouterSig 18:59, 25 April 2008 (UTC)

One has to click twice to get to Paris, Ontario. Though you may think this odd, to a person well-versed in ancient (or even medieval) history, the case is pretty much similar. It sounds as redundant to speak of "Syracuse, X" as it is to speak of "Paris, France". In fact, it sounds worse, since Paris is (and was) undoubtedly part of France, but Syracuse was not alway spart of something bigger. I am suggesting a special dabnote at the top of the Syracuse page to get you directly to the NY city since I recognise its large size and important university today. Srnec (talk) 20:22, 25 April 2008 (UTC)
Multiple clicks to any Paris that isn't Paris is considered appropriate because the "overwhelming" number of people want Paris, France. I don't know what that percentage is for Paris, or what the threshold for Syracuse should be, but I doubt that Syracuse, New York meets that. I know that you are not arguing here for the page to be changed, but I suspect that no one Syracuse listed here is "overwhelmingly" the one that is either most searched for, most desired, or most important; a special DAB notice on the top is not necessary. —ScouterSig 22:36, 25 April 2008 (UTC)
Multiple clicks for Syracuse, New York is currently required anyway. My solution adds no more clicking for the reader looking for the city in NY. The problem with the currenty solution, to be clear, is forcing writers to pipe "Syracuse, Sicily" when they would never write that (they'd just say "Syracuse"). And forcing readers to see such a title is equally bad, since they may start using that! "Syracuse, New York" is alwasy appropriate, so the situations are different. Srnec (talk) 23:45, 26 April 2008 (UTC)
Syracuse has always been located on the island of Sicily, and that it why it is located at Syracuse, Sicily and not Syracuse, Italy. So the present situation makes plenty of sense. Syracuse and Paris are not at all the same situation; Syracuse, Sicily doesn't have the amount of global significance as Paris, France, and Paris, Ontario is not nearly as significant as Syracuse, New York.
Gennarous, how is my argument "delusional"? I have never argued anything at all similar to "nothing existed before the USA", and only pointed out that readers should not be redirected to what is clearly not the primary topic. I will gladly admit that Syracuse, Sicily is "culturally superior", but again, that has absolutely nothing to do with Wikipedia's naming conventions. And yes, I will not refute that fact that the dab page has lower statistics than the Syracuse, New York page, but that proves absolutely nothing. It is your interpretation which "holds no water", as it still offers no evidence to show that the majority of people who type in "Syracuse" are seeking the Sicilian city. Similarly, the dab page has over 2,000 more readers than Syracuse, Sicily, and thus not all readers who type in "Syracuse" are expecting the Sicilian city. It is more plausible that it is closer to 50/50; given that the Sicilian city has been located at Syracuse, Sicily for quite awhile now, it is not at all unreasonable to assume that readers actually looking for the page have added the ", Sicily" to avoid a dab page, just as readers looking for the New York city have grown accustomed to adding ", New York" to avoid the dab page. Your argument does not "shoot down" my argument at all.
Was not "Sicily" always an island? Was not Syracuse settled on that island? The scurrent situation is not based on the autonomous region of Sicily, but rather the island. So it is far from incorrect. It is not a "total joke" to attempt to facilitate the searches of all 7,000 readers brought to a dab page. Again, there is no chance that all of those readers are looking for Syracuse, Sicily. A disambiguation page is the optimal solution here. As for your theory about the "correct" titles of pages, WP:NC:CITY outlines that "X, Y", where "Y is a higher level entity, e.g. a province or the country" is the correct disambiguation title for city names requiring disambiguation. Nothing is stated about exceptions for "former notable independent powers" with "obscure" US cities that use the same name. If you disagree with this, feel free to bring up a discussion there. But at the moment, this is policy, and it should not be ignored. Disambiguation is obviously needed here, all ideas of culture superiority aside. The fact is, readers thinking "oh Wikipedia, this seems to be a serious tool for education... lets see what they have on the ancient power Syracuse, where Archimedes was born" do not make up the absolute majority of Syracuse seekers.
Srnec, the American is not always Syracuse, New York. As a resident of the northern United States, I can state with confidence that the majority of people from the northern U.S. and eastern Canada would associate "Syracuse" with the New York city, without even giving a thought to the one in Sicily. My argument does not at all amount to "Syracuse" redirecting to "Syracuse, New York"; I have stated again and again that this would be a very poor solution, so clearly you misunderstood. A dab notice on either page would be a poor solution, as there is no one primary topic for "Syracuse". A disambiguation page, the status quo, is the optimal situation by far. -- Raime 01:18, 26 April 2008 (UTC)
Syracuse has always been located on the island of Sicily. Yes, but "Sicily" is just a geographic term for much of its history. We wouldn't say "Jakarta, Java" or "Tokyo, Honshu".
Syracuse and Paris are not at all the same situation. Syracuse arguably has as much historical significance as Paris. It's been around longer, for one, and Paris was not always a very important place. It has only been the "capital" of France since the eleventh century. Your perspective is "recentist".
readers looking for the New York city have grown accustomed to adding ", New York" to avoid the dab page. As they should, since it must be disambiguated in most contexts. Not so with the Sicilian city.
...for city names requiring disambiguation. And to anybody passingly familiar with ancient or medieval (Western) history (or English historiography) and not living in the USA does not think "Syracuse" ambiguous, I bet. I am Canadian and I would never have thought of the American city as infringing on the unambiguousness of "Syracuse" in reference to a city in Sicily.
...the absolute majority of Syracuse seekers. I think you conveniently brushed aside my mention of America. I do not believe that most (English-speaking) people searching for America mean anything other than the USA. Call me crazy...
My argument does not at all amount to "Syracuse" redirecting to "Syracuse, New York". I know. I have never thought that it did, rather you have ignored my argument to place a dabnote for the NY city on the Syracuse[, Sicily] page so as to avoid any more clicking for its searchers.
there is no one primary topic for "Syracuse". Depends on "primary" and on "context". I think the fact that the Sicilian Syracuse is the primary meaning in far more contexts is important, even if those contexts don't get as much attention today as the ones that favour Syracuse, NY. Srnec (talk) 23:45, 26 April 2008 (UTC)
Yes, but "Sicily" is just a geographic term for much of its history. True, perhaps I misunderstood the last debate; "Sicily" could refer to the autonomous region of Sicily and not the island, which would be the correct method (you're correct; we wouldn't say "Bandung, Java", but we would say "Bandung, West Java", as "West Java" is a higher level entity). WP:NC:CITY specifically states that "X, Y" should be used, where "Y is a higher level entity, e.g. a province or the country." Whether or not the city of Syracuse predates the higher entity, the autonomous region of Sicily, does not matter. So, basically, the "for much of its history" does not matter here; what matters is the present situation.
Syracuse arguably has as much historical significance as Paris. The cities are incomparable in terms of overall significance. Perhaps in historical significance they are comparable (I would definitely not agree that Syracuse has more historical significance, it just as a longer history; longer history does not automatically equate to more or even equal significance), but this doesn't take in cultural, global, political, etc. significance at all. If they truly were comparable in comparable in overall terms of significance, then perhaps Syracuse, Sicily would get the same amount of readers Paris gets, 265,000 per month.
Not so with the Sicilian city. Really? readers seem to disagree, or else all 7,000+ readers who go to the dab page "Syracuse" would be heading directly for the Sicilian city, which is not the case.
And to anybody passingly familiar with ancient or medieval (Western) history (or English historiography) and not living in the USA does not think "Syracuse" ambiguous, I bet. Again, statistics disagree. All that matters here is what readers are looking for, and it is not Syracuse, Sicily the absolute majority of the time. Perhaps the majority of Syracuse seekers are not familiar with passingly familiar with ancient or medieval (Western) history, or are living in the United States.
I think you conveniently brushed aside my mention of America. No, I answered it fully, and you seem to be passing it off as me "brushing it aside" because you are dissatisfied with my answer. First of all, the situation of "America" has absolutely nothing to do with the situation of "Syracuse". I do not believe that most (English-speaking) people searching for America mean anything other than the USA. That is great that you believe that; I would agree. But many editors disagree, and we are certainly not in the absolute majority. If you feel strongly on this issue, I invite you to bring up discussion at Talk:America.
rather you have ignored my argument to place a dabnote for the NY city on the Syracuse[, Sicily] page so as to avoid any more clicking for its searchers. If by "ignore" you mean "reject", then yes, I have rejected it; it is against Wikipedia policy. There is no clear primary topic here, so to do so would be to violate naming convention policy. The majority of Syracuse seekers are simply not looking for Syracuse, Sicily, so their search should not be facilitated at the expense of Syracuse, New York seekers.
Depends on "primary" and on "context". No, it does not depend on anything except Wikipedia's meaning of "primary". "Primary" here refers only to what the absolute majority of ("Syracuse", in this case) readers are looking for, and that is not Syracuse, Sicily. -- Raime 00:44, 27 April 2008 (UTC)
When you say things like "If you feel strongly on this issue, I invite you to bring up discussion at Talk:America", I can't help but wonder if you've completely missed the point. I do not oppose forcing a whole bunch of readers to do some extra clicking if I think it's wisest, so why would I care if America doesn't redirect to USA? It's you who are being inconsistent by arguing that even though America probably gets most of its traffic from people searching for the USA, that's not relevant, but the fact that most searches for Syracuse intend the NY city is relevant. If "all that matters here is what readers are looking for", it is you who ought to be making an argument at Talk:America. Two final things: "it is against Wikipedia policy" is never a sound argument here, since we are allowed to ignore policy and even encouraged to do so when we think it fails to yield the best results. Lastly, "statistics" say nothing without interpretation and it is quite possible for Syracuse to be incomparably more influential without anybody alive today being aware of it. Not that it is, but you have the bizarre notion that the number of hits actually tells us something about the article's subject. It does not. Srnec (talk) 04:03, 27 April 2008 (UTC)
Have I completely missed the point? No. I was being sarcastic, perhaps in poor taste, as you are continually bringing "America" up. I have never argued "that even though America probably gets most of its traffic from people searching for the USA"; I simply stated that I agreed that the USA would be the primary topic. However, I have no "evidence" or statistics to support this, it is only an opinion, and there is not a majority of editors who agree with me. Just because I choose to not bring up a discussion that has been brought up countless times and always ends without change does not mean I am being "inconsistent". The thing you do not seem to understand, which is evident by you continually bring this up, is that the argument of "Article X" has no bearing here; per WP:ALLORNOTHING (grant it, this is from a page discussing deletion arguments, but it applies here): The status of articles on other similar topics has no bearing on a particular article. Here, "on similar topics" could easily be replaced with "in similar situations". Whether "America" stays as a dab page or becomes a redirect has absolutely nothing to do with the status of the Syracuse page.
As for your IAR argument, per Wikipedia:What "Ignore all rules" means: "Ignore all rules" is not an answer if someone asks you why you broke a rule. Most of the rules are derived from a lot of thoughtful experience and exist for pretty good reasons; they should therefore only be broken for good reasons. In this case, your argument amounts to "we should ignore the rule to satisfy 5,000 readers and point an ambiguous term to a page that is not the primary topic among readers, beacuse the majority of these readers just are not aware of this page's topic's great importance." That is not a "good reason" at all. You say that "do not oppose forcing a whole bunch of readers to do some extra clicking if I think it's wisest", but your idea about what is "wise" amounts to your opinion on what Syracuse is "better" and not on what readers most often recognize. A situation which redirects the majority of readers to an incorrect article should never be considered the "best result". And, by your logic of "it is against Wikipedia policy" is never a sound argument here", should readers never quote rules when arguing against other editors, as rules can always be broken anyway if one reader has a POV that something will "yield the best results"?
Lastly, statistics do offer a strong argument. I gave you my interpretation: Syracuse, New York has more readers, but more importantly the dab page gets more searches than the Syracise, Sicily article, so there is really no way to argue that Syracuse, Sicily is the absolute primary topic among readers. You seem to be conveniently refuting the statistics, as they are the most prominent obstacle in declaring that Syracuse, Sicily is the unambiguous primary topic for "Syracuse". Yes, it is "possible for Syracuse to be incomparably more influential without anybody alive today being aware of it"; even if it were so, those "unaware people" are our readers, and we seek to accomodate them. A city being more influential than another has nothing to do with Wikipedia's naming conventions. I do not in any way have the bizarre notion that "the number of hits actually tells us something about the article's subject". I do have the notion that statistics point us to which article readers are looking for, and they do. Time and time again I repeat, this is what matters here: what readers are looking for. If the majority are not searching for an article, then the term in question should not redirect to that term, regardless of the article's subject or anything else. -- Raime 05:08, 27 April 2008 (UTC)