Disputatio:Gulielmus

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That photo is great! --Iustinus 05:10, 23 Decembris 2006 (UTC)

Officiality[fontem recensere]

I had always intended this page to list only names we had attestatiosn for, in order to more carefully study which forms of the name are used by whom, and so on. Consequently I have always removed any additions that I thought were speculations by wikipedians. Well, Rolandus has added Guilelmus Watterson, which cannot but be speculative, and it's kind of thrown me for a loop. Here's why: we've started this name page project, and none of the other name pages use such high standards. Yet, I would really prefer to maintain a list of "officially" attested Williams. How, o Wikipedians, do you think this should be handled? --Iustinus 22:16, 3 Februarii 2007 (UTC)

I think the problem is, that everything which is not explicitly stated will not work in a wiki. If I had known, that this is a special page, I would not have added the name. Maybe I would have added it to the talk page. So, when we have such special pages, they should get a note/template. When a name is attested, but there are no sources provided, it should get a marker, otherwise nobody could know this. There is also a difference whether someone translates a name using attested forms or just guesses a translation. How could you know whether someone has guessed wrong or just did not provide sources for this special variant? If we do not make things explicit, users will use the Latin Wikipedia itself as a source and introduce errors again, which have been eliminated in another place. What counts? The existence of a page Guilelmus Watterson or the nonexistence of the form Guilelmus on page Gulielmus? To be sure that Guilelmus will be always treated as a mistake, we should list those wrong forms as a wrong form on page Gulielmus, maybe. On page Vicipaedia:Latinitas I made a proposal for rating the latinitas of a page. There is also the idea of checking a page and having a special level for checked pages, for double checked pages and triply checked pages. There is also the idea that such checks should be done by an la-2 or better. --Rolandus 22:47, 3 Februarii 2007 (UTC)
I did not follow the link. If I had, I would have realized that it is now a redirect, which means that Guilelmus could be just a mistake. I added the name at 20:20, 23 Ianuarii 2007. Some minutes later, at 20:34, 23 Ianuarii 2007 Ioshus redirected this name to Gulielmus Watterson. I do not know whether this is correct. This is the pages title, but the page content starts with "Guilelmus Watterson ...". We do not have rules what counts in such a case. However, if someone had the idea to trust the entry on page Gulielmus I hope he would have followed the provided link and looked for sources on page Gulielmus Watterson. Then he would have realized the inconsistency. So the situation is not that bad. At least there are signs that something might be wrong. ;-) There is a need for action, I agree. --Rolandus 23:27, 3 Februarii 2007 (UTC)
Roland: templates to put on my "official list" pages, explaining what the page is for, have long been on the to-do list. I've just never gotten around to it. The reason so many of the names are unsourced is that I've only started regularly citing my sources recently. I will eventually need to go back and source the other names where possible. Guilelmus is not an error. The issue is this: Bill Watterson is a modern person, and to my knowledge has never published anything in Latin. Our naming policy says to Latinize given names wherever possible, right? The problem is that there are so many Latin forms of this name that when we Latize William, Wilhelm, Bill, Guillaume, or whatever, we have to guess which form to use. THEREFORE, any name which we have made up ourselves, while not necessarily wrong per se, is not a useful datum for this page. Do you see what I mean? (As to why Josh moved the page, I suspect it was this: there seems to be an unofficial policy that in the absence of other evidence we assume the form Gulielmus, for not better reason than that that form is what I chose to use as the name of this entry, which was for no better reason than that that form was the first one I learned, when I first started studying Latin ;) )
But, see, there is still the issue that other name pages, at least thus far, do not contain "official lists", just refence lists of articles where that name appears. To ask more at this point would be ridiculous, given that we haven't even started weeding out made-up or non-Latin names. But perhaps for the sake of consistancy we shoudl be maintaining a reference list for Wikipedia articles on Williams as well.
Hope this is clearer. If not... well, my German sucks, so you may need to get someone else to explain what I'm trying to say ;)
-Iustinus 23:39, 3 Februarii 2007 (UTC)
I had most of these aspects in mind when I started collecting the names. I often wondered whether a specific spelling of a name is an attested variant, a common translation, a guess or an error. Then I found other variants of that name where I could have asked the same questions. So I thought a central point for each name might help. Of course it will raise just more questions if it does not provide sources or an explicit note either. ;-) At the moment we do not have won much, but I think we are moving into the right direction. The extra challenge in this Vicipaedia is, that we cover several langugages. Latin has changed over the time and the world has changed. For the German Wikipedia it is rather easy: They are always having in mind a modern user with modern thinking in a modern world, using a modern language. Where "modern language" mostly just means the variant of German which is spoken in northern Germany. Here it is more complicated. Even choosing a Latin name for a modern person can be tricky. As I understand, we even have different variants of "wrong". If someone translates "Bill" to Latin he has several options. My idea is, that we should have a "default" translation for each name. So, when someone has no better ideas - or sources - he could choose this default translation. We could say that everybody shall provide reasons - or sources - if he does not choose the recommended default translation or default translationS. I think we have requirements on several levels. It might be hard to maintain a list of all attested variants of Gulielmus and I might not be the right one to do that. And I understand that it is contraproductive if I add a page - just because it exists - to a list of attested names. But we have also the basic requirement, that someone wants to add a page about Bill Clinton. If we had a default translation for "Bill" even users with no bookshelf at hands can make some basic checks and maybe help to avoid variants like "Billus Clinton". Because sometimes it is not that obvious. ;-) A template "Take this if you do not have a better idea" might suffice. We could split the task/project up into:
  • We need someone who knows what variants should be the default ones.
  • We need someone who provides the latin content of this template.
  • We need someone who designs and creates the template.
  • We need someone who writes down the details and explains the ideas behind this template.
  • We need many people who help users who do not understand this template.
We should split up or tasks/projects. We need processes which assure quality and these processes should have simple tasks which could be done by beginners and demanding tasks which need a certain qualification. If we do not have clear processes where a task sharing is possible, this will result in never ending contraproductive edits by beginners or anonymous users and the more qualified users will have to spend much of their capacity into simple and time consuming tasks. Example: When someone says that "articulus" shall be substituted by "pagina", this can be done. And this happened. There is even a page Vicipaedia:Articulus. But it is not a good idea that qualified users waste their time by explaining the reasons in each single case. Although it is nice and makes this community friendly. :-) I think we should spend a bit more time into organizing us. For example, I think we shoud have a to-do list, better a "wishlist", where we write down, what tasks are open, what projects should be started:
Title of task/project Initiator Description Required skills Responsible Status
Creating a template for XY ... ... ... ... ...
Creating a policy for AB ... ... ... ... ...
Cleanup of the wrong usage of the word CD ... ... ... ... ...
Compiling a list of EF ... ... ... ... ...
Designing a prozess for GH ... ... ... ... ...
... ... ... ... ... ...
Other Wikipedias have a special project namespace for such things.
--Rolandus 11:06, 4 Februarii 2007 (UTC)
OK, is anyone else listening to this conversation? Since this is a policy discussion, I would hope more than just Roland and I would join in.
As far as the precept of "take this if you do not have a better idea", for William and its variants, the default seems to already be Gulielmus, though to my knowledge there is no particular reason for this than that that's my favorite varient. I get the impression that most modern sources (e.g. the Latin periodicals) tend to default to Vilhelmus; we should maybe look into that. The other variable name that immediately springs to mind is Io(h)annes. I might suggest that we inculde the h if the vernacular name has it (e.g. Johann), and leave it out if it doesn't (e.g. Jean, Giovanni, Jan, etc.) Of course, I'm not sure what to do with English John, which is spelled with an h, but not pronounced with one. --Iustinus 18:35, 4 Februarii 2007 (UTC)
I preface this by saying (a) that I don't have modern Latin reference sources handy; and (b) that when I first came to Vicipaedia I felt uncomfortable with the whole idea of translating forenames (unless the subject of the article is known to have done so). Still, the practice does have very strong precedent in Latin, so, fine.
I agree that we ought to have a standard (or at least a default), otherwise we and others will never be able to devise consistent and predictable article titles. The easiest solution would be to adopt some existing standard, and the nearest thing I can think of to an official and international source of Latinity is the Catholic Church. Can we identify a standard or default form for "Christian" names in recent Catholic publications? If so, my suggestion would be that we adopt it and aim to impose it (for article titles) unless there is evidence for a different spelling in each particular case.
The Latin periodicals would be an alternative source, but do they agree among themselves? Andrew Dalby (disputatio) 19:51, 4 Februarii 2007 (UTC)
Well, not exactly official church material, but close, we have Egger's Lexicon Nominum Virorum et Mulierum. P. 120:
Guglielmoi Guillaumeg Guillermoh Williama Wilhelmge: Villelmus, i, vel e sermonum quorundam vulgarium, a lingua Latina derivatorum, ratione, Gulielmus vel Guillelmus, m. Nomen constat e verbis Germanicis wille et helm, quorum priore voluntas, altero galea, praesidium significatur. In veteribus autem litterarum monumentis haud raro occurrit scribendi ratio: Wilelmus (cf. M.G.H., Script., III, pp. 30, 31, 41, 42, 44, 47, 48; XIV, pp. 495, 495; W. F. Skene, Chronicles of the Scots, Edinburgh 1867, p. 135). In Mart. Rom. tres occurrunt eiusdem nominis scribendi modi: Willhelmus, IV Id. Dec. et VI Id. Ian.; Gulielmus, prid. Id. Apr.' VII Cal. Iul.; VII Cal. Iul.; III Cal. Iul.; Guillelmus, IV Id. Febr.
...but I wouldn't call that so helpful. --Iustinus 20:05, 4 Februarii 2007 (UTC)