Wikipedia:Naming conventions (Slovenian vs Slovene)

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A heated and long-running dispute has occupied this and other pages regarding the relative merits of the terms Slovene and Slovenian as both nouns and adjectives referring to Slovenia and its people. Various historical, etymological, cultural, aesthetic, and logical arguments can be made to support the "correctness" of either term. The inescapable conclusion, however, is that both are equally "correct" based on their wide and synonymous use in contemporary global English. Many purported authorities, in fact, use them interchangeably. Because consistency is valued and consensus unreachable, the editors turned to Wikipedia policy for guidance.

Naming convention[edit]

Wikipedia:Naming conventions states that article names "should give priority to what the majority of English speakers would most easily recognize." Preliminary research into which term is more recognized, using scientific samples of English usage known as "corpora" indicates that "Slovenian" is more common. (English Corpora). Therefore we are establishing style guidelines on this page for reference and dispute resolution on all Wikipedia articles and related project pages.

  1. Articles with Slovene in the title should be redirected to main articles using Slovenian. (Exception: Articles about organizations that use Slovene)
  2. For the sake of consistency, "Slovenian" in the title demands the same term be used throughout that article. "Slovene" in the title demands the opposite. (Exception: specific material that reasonably requires inconsistent usage.)
  3. Naming conventions are not applicable to articles that use "Slovene" or "Slovenian" in the body text only. For these articles, either term is allowable, as long as its usage is consistent.
  4. For the sake of consistency, it is preferred that subsequent editors respect the terminology used by the originator of the article.
  5. Changes to subsequent material can be made to establish consistency with the originator, but please add a pointer to these guidelines on the talk page of the article to help prevent edit wars.
  6. Edits made solely to change one term to the other, overturning the usage of the original contributor and in opposition to reasons given above are strongly discouraged.



  • Klinar, Stanko. Slovene ali Slovenian. Slava. Debatni list No. plus 1994/1995. Pg. 105. (in Slovenian)
  • Klinar, Stanko. (1994) Slovenska zemljepisna imena v angleških besedilih (Slovenian geographic names in English texts). (in Slovenian)
  • Klinar, Stanko. Slovene ali Slovenian - ali kako po Steibeckovem navdihu ("In dubious battle")bojujemo N/negotovo bitko. Vestnik. - ISSN 0351-3513. - #30, #No. #1/2 (1996), pp. 245-253. (in Slovenian)
  • Metcalfe, Roger. "Letter to the Editor: SLOVENE or SLOVENIA: a view from the rainy side of the Alps" Marketing Magazine. Autumn 1996. [1]. Acquired on 27 July 2005.



  • American Heritage Dictionary of the English Language 4th ed. (2000), prefers "Slovene" for the citizens of Slovenia, the ethnic group and their language, with "Slovenian" as an acceptable variant without a separate entry. [2]
  • Merriam-Webster's Online Dictionary 10th ed. (2008), prefers "Slovene" for the people and their language, with "Slovenian" as an acceptable variant without a separate entry. [3]