Wikipedia:Size in volumes

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This page displays the current size of the English Wikipedia (without images) in print volumes, per mathematical calculation.

2609 volumes
14 stacks

Human outline.svg

Assumptions and calculations[edit]

  • On 23 Novemeber 2019 Special:statistics showed 3,477,025,080 words across 5,973,223 articles implying an average of 582 words per article.
  • This showed that in January 2010 (most recent statistics) 14 GB (=1,5032,385,536 bytes) across 1,798  million words, implying 8.3 bytes/word. ASCII uses 1 byte/character which in turn implies 8.3 characters/word. However, this includes wikimarkup, and 5 char/word plus one for space or punctuation mark is standard, so 6 characters/word will be assumed.
  • There are currently 5,977,029 articles, which means 3.460699791×10^9 words, which means 2.0871785268×10^10 characters.
  • One volume: 25cm high, 5cm thick. 500 leaves, 2 pagefaces per leaf, two columns per pageface, 80 rows/column, 50 characters per row. So one volume = 8,000,000 characters, or 1,333,333 words, or 2,302.8 articles. (Pictures not included!)
  • Thus, the text of the English Wikipedia is currently equivalent to 2,869 volumes of the Encyclopædia Britannica.
  • Sanity check: Encyclopædia Britannica has 44 million words across 32 volumes, or 1,375,000 words per volume. This would imply 2,529 volumes for WP.

Print Wikipedia[edit]

The Print Wikipedia installation

In June 2015, artist Michael Mandiberg (User:Theredproject) generated a 7,473 volume print-ready collection of the English Wikipedia in PDF format, printed wallpaper representing the spines of the books, and printed over 100 volumes through print on demand service Lulu, as part of an art installation at the Denny Gallery in New York City. The table of contents alone took 91 volumes to list the nearly 11.5 million articles.[1][2]

See also[edit]


  1. ^ Schuessler, Jennifer (16 June 2015). "Moving Wikipedia From Computer to Many, Many Bookshelves". The New York Times. Retrieved 20 June 2015.
  2. ^ "Github site mandiberg/printwikipedia". Retrieved 2015-07-02.

External links[edit]