Wikipedia talk:WikiProject History/Archive 1

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Archive 1 | Archive 2

More basic topics?

We need an entry on what is in Latin technically called intitulatio, or the official titles of rulers, especially as used in formal addresses, on coins, and on charters. What do folks think it should be called? Royal titles? Titulature? Honorifics? Honorifics is nicely general and will cover the titles of the elected as well as the royal. 'Intitulation' is an English word (OED sez), but I prefer 'Titulature' if we're going for that stem. --MichaelTinkler

I like Honorifics, m'self. It should also be linked to nomenclature, so that we can get names right in article titles. It's an interesting dilemma, though -- we need to make it clear that honorificas often do not reflect reality, but there is also a demonstrable need for simple translation of abbreviated hon's. Any suggestions for keeping it limited to a manageable scope? JHK
We have an entry above and a table of translated honorifics below? --MichaelTinkler
Hmmm. problem is, lots of them deserve their own articles -- like dux, comes, comes or dux markionis -- that change dramatically over time and from 'country' to 'country'. Ugh. Not saying no, mind you -- just anticipating issues. JHK

Page title

Any objections to moving this to Wikipedia:WikiProject History? Angela. 03:22, 30 May 2004 (UTC)

Now moved. Was previously at Wikipedia:History. Angela. 03:25, Aug 10, 2004 (UTC)


This project needs some advice on how to organize historical categories, especially categories to do with the history of nations. Specific questions that need answering are:

  1. Do we need to have separate categories for a country and its history? For example, it seems clear that we don't need both Category:Roman Empire and Category:History of the Roman Empire. So do we need both Category:United Kingdom and Category:History of the United Kingdom?
  2. If we do need a category for a nation's history, then do we call it Category:History of France or Category:French history ?
  3. What to do about nations that have changed name and boundaries? For example, take British history. Should everything go in Category:History of the United Kingdom or should there be separate sub-categories for English, Welsh, Scottish, (Northern) Irish history? Do English events cease to go into the English history category after 1707 or do they continue up to the present? What about events in British colonies before they gained independence? Similar questions arise for almost all countries. A careful hierarchy would solve this, but explicit recommendations are needed so that everyone is working with the same ideas in mind.
  4. Are there recommended sub-categories? Should every country have a Category:Military history of X? What about political, economic and social history sub-categories?
  5. Should (sub-)sub-categories be created pre-emptively or should we wait until a category gets too big and then split it?
  6. What should go into Category:History?

I'll give my proposals for answers to these six questions in the sections below. Please criticize and improve. Gdr 12:03, 2004 Aug 11 (UTC)

History category needed?

We need a history category for all modern nations because geography, law, politics, culture are other legitimate ways of organizating information about a county. But we don't need a separate history category for nations that no longer exist. If we have Category:Byzantine Empire we don't also need Category:History of the Byzantine Empire. I think the same goes even for recently deceased nations like the Soviet Union.

Naming of categories

"History of X" vs "Xish history"

See the discussion and proposal at Wikipedia:Naming conventions (country-specific topics). - Pioneer-12

In favour of "History of X":
  • Many existing categories follow this format.
  • Works for all nations.
  • Easier to search for--don't have to know the nationality adjective (France/French, Iraq/Iraqi, Iran/Iranian, etc.)
  • Parallel to "Politics of X", "Military history of X".
  • Alphabetizes easily with "[History of X | X]".
  • Perhaps more "encyclopedic".
In favour of "Xish history":
  • Many existing categories follow this format.
  • Shorter.
  • Alphabetizes automatically.
  • May be a more "natural" name for a category.

National categories

Here's a tentative proposal for question 3: what to do about nations that have changed name and borders. I'll take the United Kingdom as an example.

Here's a diagram showing these historical categories and my proposal about their relationship in the category system:

                            History by nation
                         |                            |          |
                   United Kingdom            Republic of Ireland |
                     |  |  |  |                       |          |
  .----------+-------+  |  |  `------------+----------'          |
  |          |       |  |  |               |                     |
  |    Great Britain |  |  `-------.    Ireland                  |
  |          |       |  `------.   |       |                     |
  +----------+-------+---.     |   `----+--'                Ancient Rome
  |          |           |     |        |                        |
  |       England     Scotland |   Northern Ireland              |
  |          |                 |                                 |
  `-+--------'                 +---------------------------------'
    |                          |
  Wales                  Roman Britain

This diagram isn't complete. There is a Category:Ancient Britain and a Category:British Empire. Category:History of the United Kingdom would be in Category:United Kingdom and so on. And there are many sub-categories.

Some problems:


Yes, recommended standard names, for example:

  • Military/Cultural/Political history of X
  • Prime ministers/Presidents/Monarchs of X

but see below.

Pre-emptively create sub-categories?

No: if we do that, we'll have hundreds of categories like Category:Military history of Tuvalu with no articles in them. Better to wait until there it is worth splitting, say at about 5 articles.

Top-level organization

Here's a tentative proposal for question 6: what should in Category:History?

Almost no articles should go into Category:History itself, except things like History of the world and History. However, this would leave Category:History looking rather empty. Comments? Gdr 12:08, 2004 Aug 11 (UTC)

I guess I might have jumped the gun in some of my recend edits removing subcats of Category:History only to Category:History by topic. I was just doing this in line with the general rule of articles not being in the parent and child categories. I think it works out better this way, though siroχo 23:53, Oct 5, 2004 (UTC)
I've been doing some further cleaning. I think the most controversial change I made was moving Category:History by nation to Category:History by region. There are currently 3 top-level articles- History, Civilization, and History of the world. Should there be a category called Category:Historic events with subcats like Category:Disasters and Category:Famines? --Brunnock 15:37, Jun 19, 2005 (UTC)

Category:History of Britain

You re-organized all the categories that used to be under Category:History of the United Kingdom. Perhaps you could explain your rationale for this change at Wikipedia talk:WikiProject History and if you get consensus for your rationale, edit Wikipedia:WikiProject History#Categories so that it corresponds with what you did. Gdr 18:20, 2004 Aug 27 (UTC)

I am sorry for overturning your carefully built categorization system, but it had a major flaw. Category:History of the United Kingdom was serving as both the top level category for the history of that state, and also the sub-category for post-1800 history. The warning on the page specifically states that it is only for post-1800 history, yet paradoxically it was also the correct location for Category:Ancient Britain. Thus I separated it. Cat:History of the UK can now live up to its billing as being for only post 1800 history, while Category:History of Britain can take on the duties of being the higher level category, similar to what the article History of Britain does. SimonP,
Surely the flaw was in the description of the category Category:History of the United Kingdom, not in the organization of the categories? The reason I say that is because other categories for national histories have a similar organization to the one I recommend at Wikipedia:WikiProject History. For example, Category:United States history is on the one hand the category for the post-1776 history of the US, but on the other it contains Category:U.S. colonial history; similarly Category:History of the Netherlands is on the one hand the category for the modern history of the Netherlands and on the other it contains Category:United Provinces. Do we need to make higher level categories in these cases too? Gdr 19:59, 2004 Aug 27 (UTC)
For just as many countries it does not work that way. Category:History of Canada contains pre-confederation articles. Category:German history contains articles on the Holy Roman Empire. Even Category:United Provinces is something of an aberration containing a single sub-category, with other UP articles being in the main Dutch history article. Personally I think names for nations (like German, British, and Canadian) are much better than those for states for history articles fortunately for almost all states those names are the same. State names can change rapidly, with little actual effect on the ground. Category:Burkina Faso need not be divided by each arbitrary name change. nations tend to be more substantive and enduring. The vast majority of British history was unaffected by the Union of 1800. The Industrial Revolution, British culture, the British economy, and the British Empire, those things that modern historians most concern themselves with, were all but completely unchanged. It thus makes sense to keep the full history of these things in one category, dividing only the political sphere, which was much affected by the Union, into two sub-categories. Great Britain is not a geographical or temporal subset of the United Kingdom. Legally it was a distinct entity and there is no logic to making it a sub-category of the UK. What they are both a sub-category of is the history of the British, and Category:History of Britain is thus a logical category to encompass them both. - SimonP 20:26, Aug 27, 2004 (UTC)
That's a good argument. It may be convincing. However, you're not right to say "no logic": the logic is explicitly given at Wikipedia:WikiProject History#Organization of national histories: the category for the history of a state includes the history of its predecessors. Anyway, this is the discussion I was hoping to have at Wikipedia talk:WikiProject History. May we take it there? Gdr 20:33, 2004 Aug 27 (UTC)
The UK is an odd exception. There were Germans pre-1870, Canadians pre-1867, Russians in the USSR etc. Thus German history is more than the history of the modern state of Germany, as is Canadian. The Soviet period is rightly an era of Russian history. By contrast there were no United Kingdom whatsoever before 1800. - SimonP 20:44, Aug 27, 2004 (UTC)

Confederate States Army

I'm not sure if the article Confederate States Army is still considered a stub, but it looks like it needs expansion... but someone removed that tag off the list. -- Allyunion 09:20, 2 Sep 2004 (UTC)

Would it be useful to have a list of pages from Cleanup/Leftovers listed here?

There are quite a few history related pages on WP:LO(which I'm trying to clean up); would they be more likely to get worked on if I list them on your project page? Would this be useful to you all? Please let me know, and/or take a look at WP:LO yourself and clean some stuff there. Thanks! JesseW 12:18, 23 Nov 2004 (UTC)

Wikipedia:WikiProject History/Status

I have created Wikipedia:WikiProject History/Status, which collects notes about "history of" articles with the goal of turning them into featured articles. Please add notes on what needs to be done, and see what you can do to help address suggestions. Tuf-Kat

Appeal for an academic historian

An historian's help is needed at Bombing of Dresden in World War II. Philip Beard Shearer is inserting what I consider to be his personal opinion (original research). I regard this article as an academic topic and feel that scholarly standards should prevail. There are a number of disputed sections, but the one we're currently arguing over is: "Günter Grass, the German novelist and Nobel laureate for literature, called the bombing "a crime". Simon Jenkins, the former editor of The Times, has called it a war crime." I have no objection to that, though I don't know why we're quoting those two, but no matter. It's the subsequent sentence I object to:

This implies that those allied commanders who ordered the action and the airmen who carried it out should have been tried as war criminals. As no Axis personnel were tried at the post-war Nuremberg Trials for participating in the decisions on, or execution of, assault by aerial bombardment on defended enemy territory, there is no legal precedent available to indicate that these actions constituted a war crime.

I see this as Philip's personal commentary. I've asked him for a reference. He won't supply one because he says the above is as true as "the Thames flows through London." I say that it's an argument and needs attribution or should be removed. Any comments would be much appreciated. SlimVirgin 23:24, Feb 17, 2005 (UTC)

I agree, the sentence is mere extrapolation and judgement; and it may be flawed reasoning anyway because for them to be tried they would have to be found acting to orders contrary to their superiors and the responsibility goes up the chain of command. Nobs 18:11, 4 May 2005 (UTC)

Roman History

May I humbly suggest that this article be created, presumably as a redirect to somewhere? I'm unfamiliar with the structure/hierarchy of the relevant articles... -leigh (φθόγγος)

I think List of Ancient Rome-related topics may be the best we've got. Perhaps you could write a summary article for us? Gdr 10:27, 2005 Apr 4 (UTC)

Historians needed!

Hi, I don't know whether you historian types have heard of the Wikireader project? It's a set of projects to gather together articles into useful 'books' on topics such as history for reference or education, and eventually to print (hopefully!). Well, I started something that was perhaps a little over-ambitious some time ago, called A History of the 20th Century, and the response has been, well, dismal. Not a historian myself, but more of a one-time wikipedaholic, I need input from people who really know what they're doing! Is anyone interested? Thanks, --Mark Lewis 14:18, 13 Apr 2005 (UTC)

Category redundancy

Help:Category says " may be wise not to put a page in a category and also in a more general category." This makes sense to me: subcategories belong to higher-level categories, so assigning an article to the lowest level, most specific category should suffice.

However, the main Wikipedia:WikiProject:History#Categories page states: "Every article on a historical topic should be categorized under Category:History, as well as any other categories to which it should belong." It seems to me that this should read: "Every article on a historical topic should be categorized under the lowest level History category, as well as any other categories to which it should belong." -- Mwanner 23:57, Apr 24, 2005 (UTC)

Yes, that's what it's supposed to mean (taking "under" in the general sense, not "directly under"). I suggest you re-word it to make it clear. Gdr 11:10, 2005 Apr 25 (UTC)
OK, I've taken a shot at it. Please revise if you find it lacking. Thanks, Mwanner 12:02, Apr 25, 2005 (UTC)
Looks fine to me. Gdr 13:01, 2005 Apr 25 (UTC)

Category:United States history

Category:United States history has some serious problems. It has directly within it the following subcats:

It would seem self-evident that these belong in a hierarchy, rather than all at the same level:

Does anyone see any reason not to make these changes? Am I correct in thinking that it can be carried out simply by changing the categories assigned to these categories? Anything I should beware of?

TIA, -- Mwanner 14:07, Apr 25, 2005 (UTC)

OK, I've figured out that this is much simpler than I at first feared-- it's just a matter of removing some upper-level categories from lower-level ones.

So, I have removed Category:United States history and Category:Military history of the United States from Category:American Civil War since those are inherited via Category:United States wars.

And I have removed Category:United States history from Category:United States wars since it is inherited via Category:Military history of the United States

-- Mwanner 17:09, Apr 25, 2005 (UTC)

And I have removed Category:Military history of the United States from Category:American Revolutionary War on the same reasoning.

I'll stop at this point for a while (though I'm not sure if there is much more of the same kind needed) in case anyone sees this differently.

-- Mwanner 17:21, Apr 25, 2005 (UTC)

Pet Project: Former (historical) buildings and structures.

Hi all. I apologize if this isn't the best place to post this sort of thing, but I wasn't sure where else to attempt to reach all the historians out there.

I've created a new set of categories, which I think is rather important and central, and which needs quite a bit of help from you all to make it a valuable part of Wikipedia, and not just dangling category bits.

Within Category:Former buildings and structures, I have begun to sub-categorize by country (e.g. Category:Former buildings and structures of Japan) and by building type (e.g. Category:Former Castles, Palaces, and Fortresses). So far, I have been having a surprisingly difficult time coming up with buildings that no longer exist and are of a certain degree of historical significance. Please feel free to add more sub-categories, for other countries or building types, and to add more articles!

For more details on what I'd like to see classified as a 'former building' and other such discussions, please see the individual Category pages, as well as my talk page. Thanks. -LordAmeth 14:11, 11 May 2005 (UTC)

Some of your categories are mistitled:
Category:Former Castles, Palaces, and Fortresses should be Category:Former castles, palaces, and fortresses
Category:Former Places of Worship should be Category:Former places of worship
Gdr 16:42, 2005 May 11 (UTC)
Okay, I'll change them, no big deal. But they weren't "mis-titled." I did that intentionally, to look more bold, and to follow the standard rules of titles that we all learn in, like, 1st grade - words other than "a" or "the" should be capitalized. LordAmeth 02:57, 12 May 2005 (UTC)
As a late FYI, Wikipedia naming conventions may differ from other conventions you're used to. In Wikipedia we try to always use lower case for words that are not proper nouns or do not start a sentence. A given title should not look "bolder" than any other. See the manual of style for more information. --Dhartung | Talk 21:52, 18 June 2006 (UTC)

Request for subproject: Historians peer review

Hi. I've found that the standards of wikipedia history articles are incredibly low. I was particularly shocked that someone put this History of Poland (1945-1989) up for a Featured Article status. We seriously need a qualified historian's peer review project, possibly as a sub-project of this one.


Certification of pages as meeting a common standard, based on historiographical analysis of the short comings of articles and their correction.


Use a self-selected body of historians to review articles for quality. Where historians as a minimum is defined by an undergraduate specialisation, or a published monograph in a quality press, or a published peer reviewed history article. (Allied fields like historical sociology, historical anthropology, Womens Studies etc. should be considered equivalent.)

Common requirements for articles

A discussion of the historiography of the historical subject. A historiographical bibliography of the subject. Brining the contents of the articles up to the requirements of a reviewed, historian written, entry in an historical encyclopedia.

yours Fifelfoo 8 July 2005 05:03 (UTC)

Improvement drive

Heraldry has been nominated to be improved by Wikipedia:This week's improvement drive. Vote for this article there if you want to contribute.

Also, the articles History and History of the Balkans are currently nominated to be improved by Wikipedia:This week's improvement drive and can be selected on this page.

Spice trade is the current collaboration at Wikipedia:This week's improvement drive. Help us improve it in any way you can. --Fenice 19:55, 16 August 2005 (UTC)

History COTW

This seems to be a fairly active wikiproject would it be a good idea to have a History COTW? 00:47, 25 August 2005 (UTC)


History of technology is a COTW candidate - see its nomination page. If you're interested, you can vote for it, or help out with the article itself. Thanks! -- Beland 03:19, 30 August 2005 (UTC)

Humanities is now a COTW candidate. Please vote/comment/help! Thanks, Walkerma 05:09, 29 December 2005 (UTC)

Collis P. Huntington High School

Colis P. Huntington High School (the name of the article is currently misspelled) has been listed for deletion and I'm trying to clean it up with some high hope of producing a good article about the history of this former segregated colored school in Newport News, Virginia. Any help would be appreciated, and you might also like to make a comment on the deletion discussion page. --Tony SidawayTalk 18:52, 1 September 2005 (UTC)

Science pearls

Hello, Please notice this project. I hope that a new List of publications in history will be created and adopted by the history project. Thanks,APH 06:37, 13 September 2005 (UTC)

Soweto riots

Could someone, or preferably anyone, review this article please? These riots were a major incident during apartheid, and I have given the article a going over, but it needs references, sources, more definite info on what transpired during the massacre, and basically just some credibility to how it is written. Thanks in advance. Harro5 06:04, 18 November 2005 (UTC)

Project Consulate and Empire


first, let me introduce myself. My name is Frank Schulenburg, I come from Germany and have been contributing to the German Wikipedia since February 2005. My special field of interest is early modern history, especially economic and world history. You'll find more information on my german userpage.

I'm currently working on a project at the french wikipedia, which I've started a few days ago. You can find it at Wikipédia:Projet/Histoire du Consulat et de l'Empire. The main goal of this project is the collaboration between the different Wikipedias on the topic of the French Consulate and First French Empire (1799–1815).

Everyone with a special interest in French History is invited to contribute or just to take a look at it. If you want to take part in this project, please put your name in the list of participants.

Greetings, --Frank Schulenburg

Historians Needed

The History of Europe article has long been neglected, right now it is a huge mess. The section headings are rather haphazard, the style is reminiscent of 1066 and all that and its pretty safe to assume that it is full of factual errors (nearly every single date in the French Revolution section was wrong before I rewrote it).

Please come and help cleap up this aweful mess. Thanks. --BadSeed 06:57, 26 November 2005 (UTC)

Improvement drive

A related topic, History of the world is currently a nomination on WP:IDRIVE. Support the article with your vote to improve its quality. --Fenice 14:18, 28 December 2005 (UTC)

History articles

I asked this question on Wikipedia:Village pump (policy), but I would like an opinion from anybody who comes here: Is there an actual naming conventions policy that states that the article title should be in the form of "History of X" instead of "X history"? Although Wikipedia:WikiProject History lists naming conventions for categories on this subject, I do not see any for articles. If not, should we formally write one up. Thanks. Zzyzx11 (Talk) 04:05, 5 January 2006 (UTC)

Just an opinon ... kinda depends on the subject. More formally, articles should be "History of [insert topic here]", IMO. J. D. Redding

History of Science WikiProject

There is a new History of Science WikiProject that some members of this project may be interested in. Also, if there is an appropriate way to link from your project to History of Science on your project page, such as under child projects, please do so.--ragesoss 04:43, 17 January 2006 (UTC)

History of India WikiProject

The History of India WikiProject was created a while ago, but no one knew about it. The project has been discovered and revived. Hopefully history enthusiasts from this project will help support this derivative project. deeptrivia (talk) 03:53, 26 January 2006 (UTC)

Articles for the Wikipedia 1.0 Project

Hi, I'm a member of the Wikipedia:Version_1.0_Editorial_Team, which is looking to identify quality articles in Wikipedia for future publication on CD or paper. We recently began assessing using these criteria, and we are looking for A-Class and good B-Class articles, with no POV or copyright problems. Can you recommend any suitable history articles? Is Wikipedia:WikiProject History/Status a useful place to start? Please post your suggestions here. Cheers, Walkerma 03:57, 26 January 2006 (UTC)


According to my knowledge and google search, the article Sakastan is almost entirely incorrect. However, I would not like to get involved. Can somebody please take a look? Thanks! deeptrivia (talk) 23:29, 18 February 2006 (UTC)


Wherever Suetonius is used as a link/shorthand not to the person but to his main work Lives of the Twelve Caesars, I'm turning the link into Lives of the Twelve Caesars. This is currently a redirect to Suetonius but might later split off into an article of its own, and anyone doing that splitting might need a specific list of links to the work not the man. Please don't revert them to redirect straight back into Suetonius. There are about 500, so any help would be gratefully received. Thanks. neddyseagoonNeddyseagoon 22:55, 11 March 2006 (UTC)

History by nation

When's the History by nation comming? --HolyRomanEmperor 20:47, 31 March 2006 (UTC)

A favour

Wikipedia's too slow for me, so could some one please put that I'm a member of the Wikiproject on my talk page? Thanks in advance. --HolyRomanEmperor 16:08, 9 April 2006 (UTC)

Uh, not the User Talk page. The User page. :-( --HolyRomanEmperor 18:21, 9 April 2006 (UTC)
Sorry. I initially assumed that's what you meant, but when I went back and reread your request, I thought you meant the talk page. Cheers!--ragesoss 17:43, 9 April 2006 (UTC)

Granary COTW

I have nominated the stub article Granary to WP:COTW Granaries have been important in history, agriculture, society and economy .They are still very important. Very much could be said in terms of the history of agriculture, the different types of granaries and the importance in different cultures (in proverbs, stories, etc...) It is still, at this stage, a stub. Building a image gallery of granaries would also be nice. --Francisco Valverde 17:04, 12 May 2006 (UTC)

History article needs help

Can someone help add info to Social issues of the 1920s? As of now, it is quite short, unprofessional, and I've done almost everything I can do to fix it. It needs to cover more than just the USA, and the existing sections require validation and expansion. Also, the article needs to be linked under "See Also" in similar pages. If anyone would like to contribute even just a little cleanup it would be very much appreciated.--The ikiroid (talk)(Help Me Improve) 21:01, 24 May 2006 (UTC)