Wikipedia:Manual of Style/Wikipedia books

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Note: This guideline only covers books in the Book namespace (Book:Title). Those found on user pages (User:USERNAME/Books/Title) can be written according to whatever style the user chooses.

Scope and structure[edit]


Each book should have a specific and well-defined scope. A reader should not have to guess what the book is about, or be surprised by its content. Use the title and subtitle to define the general scope of the book, and divide the book into topical chapters as needed.


Not all books need chapters. Books such as Book:Invincible class battlecruisers are short enough to be read without having a chapter structure as a guide. However longer books, such as Book:Canada, will almost always benefit from a solid chapter structure. It usually is a good idea to place general topics first, and specialist topics last. Alphabetical or chronological ordering can also be useful. Use whatever makes the most sense for the needs of the book.


Books should follow the same naming guidelines as articles do. In particular

  • The title should be descriptive, rather than try to "grab attention"
  • YesYJohn Wayne
  • NHollywood's most lethal cowboy
  • YesYCanadian prime ministers
  • NCanadian Prime Ministers

Note: WP:MOS also applies to Wikipedia-Books, including WP:DASH.

Layout and formatting[edit]

All books follow the same basic layout:



;Chapter 1
:[[Article 1]]
:[[Article 2]]

;Chapter 2
:[[Article 3]]
:[[Article 4]]

  • Titles need to be written as level 2 headers (==Title==). Titles are mandatory.
  • Subtitles need to be written as level 3 headers (===Subtitle===). Subtitles are optional.
  • Chapters need to be written with a preceding semicolon (;Chapter). Chapters are optional.
  • Articles need to be written with a preceding colon (:[[Article]]).
  • Articles can be renamed (:[[Original title|New title]]) to anything that makes sense for the book. For example, Antarctic Impulse Transient Antenna could be renamed to its common abbreviation ANITA.
  • Parentheses should be removed from article titles when possible. For example, Duality (mathematics) should be renamed to Duality unless confusion is likely to happen.
  • For technical reasons, :''[[Article]]'' is not a valid way to italicize articles; instead use :[[Article|''Article'']].

All of these should be written as they usually would be in articles. Meaning that if something would normally be italicized, also italicize it in the book. If it would normally use sentence case, use sentence case in the book. Etc.

Note: Until bug 704 is resolved, the markup used to italicize, bold, or otherwise format article, chapters, etc. will be treated as regular characters. That is ;''Chapter'' will display as ''Chapter'' rather than Chapter.

{{Saved book}} template[edit]

This template should always be present at the beginning of books.

{{saved book

The title and subtitle parameters should match the title and subtitle of the book (level 2 and 3 headers, respectively). These are not used by the renderer; they are only meant to be used in the preview of the book's cover. Therefore if the title or the subtitle are too long to fit in, feel free to trim them with ellipses, or to ignore the subtitle.

An image should be chosen for the cover of the book, and the color is customizable. See {{saved book}} for details.

Note: Fair use cannot be claimed on covers, so please choose one which has a compatible license.


All Wikipedia policies apply to Wikipedia-Books as well as articles. For example a book that violates neutrality policies can be deleted just like any other page on Wikipedia. Books should also reflect consensus.

See also[edit]