This is the main project page of Wikisaurus—a Wiktionary subproject and a wiki namespace aiming at creating a thesaurus—a dictionary of synonyms, antonyms and further semantically related terms such as hyponyms, hypernyms, meronyms and holonyms.
Please contribute your own Wikisaurus entries, or add to the existing Wikisaurus entries.
The purpose of Wikisaurus is to serve the role of an electronic thesaurus—a dictionary of synonyms and antonyms in a rather vague and inaccurate sense of the word "synonym", but also of other semantically related terms such as hyponyms, hypernyms, meronyms, holonyms. The definition of "synonym" is, quoting Wiktionary, "A word or phrase with a meaning that is the same as, or very similar to, the word or phrase." For the purpose of thesaurus, the definition needs to be adjusted: the word "very" has to be stricken out from the part "very similar". Many thesauri go much farther than that: they list words whose meaning is close enough to the headword to be interesting for the user, disregarding any precise meaning of the word "synonym". The concept of a dictionary of accurate synonyms is incapable of producing typical entries of 20 vague synonyms. (To remove the confusion, coinage of a new term, such as "similonym", would be helpful, although there already is "near-synonym".)
The purpose of such a thesaurus in general is mainly to help anyone who writes for living or fun—writers, managers, contributors to wikis, bloggers, and writers of love letters—to find words they don't recall or even know when they recall words that are semantically related to the sought word. In general, anyone to whom the choice of words matters can benefit from a thesaurus, especially one linked to a dictionary providing the definitions.
Added value of Wikisaurus is its Wiktionary integration—it links to and is linked from Wiktionary.
To do: add a link to an external consideration of value and uses of thesauri.
Candidate model thesauri include Roget's thesaurus, and, say, The Penguin Thesaurus. The two follow different design principles.
Whether Wikisaurus at en.wiktionary.org should contain entries for other languages than English is currently undecided or disputed. Entries for foreign languages could look like Wikisaurus:příbuzný and Wikisaurus:juoppo. An alternative naming of the entries is "Wikisaurus:cs:příbuzný" and "Wikisaurus:fi:juoppo", modeled on the naming of topic categories. See also Wikisaurus_talk:juoppo and BP: Wikisaurus - non-English entries, Mar 2009.
Formatting is specified and discussed at:
The inclusion criteria for Wikisaurus entries are the same as those for the mainspace: Wiktionary:Criteria for inclusion.
Additionally, all items in lists of synonyms, antonyms, hyponyms etc. on Wikisaurus pages are required to be attested, using the same attestation criteria as the mainspace.
Lists of templates:
- Use "ws " prefix. Basis for decision: Grease pit discussion of July 2008. (Past prefixes: "wse-", "wikisaurus-", "saurus-".)
|The second entry is a lazy one. The third one shows no tooltip, but also does not make it clear that one is missing.|
|To be put around a list of
|Entered at the very top of the entry. When without parameter, determines the headword automatically.|
||Deprecated in Wikisaurus. Preferred template:
||“beauty” in Roget's Thesaurus, T. Y. Crowell Co., 1911.|
||Sense: glad; in a good mood||Used after the third level heading for the part of speech.|
Linking from mainspace to Wikisaurus entries:
- Place "* See also [[Wikisaurus:headword]]" to "Synonyms" section, or to "Hyponyms" section if the Wikisaurus entry contains mainly hyponyms.
- Especially for Wikisaurus entries featuring mostly synonyms, it is good to add a link to the Wikisaurus entry from all the mainspace entries for the synonyms, so that the user knows that there is a Wikisaurus entry when visiting the mainspace.
Since its inception in 2004, the project is in an embryo stage. The formatting is in flux, the entries are few -- 275, so are the contributors. --Dan Polansky 12:38, 26 August 2008 (UTC)
As of the beginning of September 2009, Wikisaurus has around 800 entries, some of which feature hyponyms, hypernyms, meronyms and holonyms. Almost all entries follow a unified format.
As of October 2015, there are about 1400 entries.
Title: The current title of the project is "Wikisaurus". Alternatives considered include "Wikithesaurus".
Spelling: The current spelling is Wikisaurus with lowercase 's'. In the past, it must have been WikiSaurus with capital 'S' at some point.
This logo was proposed here in December 2006.
To do: add links to discussions about logo.
- Searchable 1911 version of Roget's Thesaurus hosted by the University of Chicago
- Moby Thesaurus II by Grady Ward - public domain
- Dictionary at datasegment.com - includes Moby thesaurus in its search results
Free as in "freedom"
- None listed.
- Help:Creating a Wikisaurus entry -- out of date, see /Format
- /Purpose - on the purpose of Wikisaurus; has 230 words now. Last substantial change: 11 June 2007.
- Wiktionary:Thesaurus considerations - Original discussion about the project.
- /Improvements 1 - Its talkpage has a discussion from July 2008.
- /Improvements 2 - Discussion about the direction and overall project.
- /Format - Discussion about the formatting and general contents of a Wikisaurus entry.
- /Requested entries - A lot of words with candidate lists of synonyms that can be used as a starting point for creation of entries. The size of the page: 700 words. --Dan Polansky 11:34, 5 September 2008 (UTC)
Things to do:
Discussions about Wikisaurus are scattered across various pages. In the future, they should better take place in Beer Parlour, a general policy discussion room.
Pages with discussions:
- Wiktionary:Thesaurus considerations -- starting in 2002 and 2003, getting more traffic in 2004, with most discussion ended by the end of 2006
- Wiktionary:Wikisaurus/Improvements 1 -- created in February 2005, and stopped immediately; a surge of activity appeared in July 2008
- Wiktionary:Wikisaurus/Improvements 2 -- created in April 2006, active in May 2006 and then stopped; a surge of activity appeared in May 2008
For more discussions, see #Beer parlour.
Discussions about Wikisaurus at Beer parlour:
The following list is highly incomplete.
- WikiSaurus category - March 2005 - 750 words
- Wiktionary:Project_-_WikiSaurus_improvement_1 - April 2006
- Template_WikiSaurus-link - April 2006
- Wikisaurus_cleanup - April 2006 - 2800 words
- WikiSaurus:new - May 2006 - 45 words
- WikiSaurus_proposal - May 2006 - 172 words
- Pushing for the definitive WikiSaurus name and namespace - May 2006 - 2200 words
- Stop me if this sounds_familiar - Oct 2006 - on semiprotecting Wikisaurus entries - see also the vote
- January-April 2008 : none found.
- WikiSaurus - May 2008 - a proposal of deletion of Wikisaurus
- Thesaurus_flunky - May 2008
- Specific_Universal_Changes_in_Wikisaurus - June 2008
- Yet_Another_Interminable_Discussion_about_Wikisaurus - July 2008
- Category:Wikisaurus - July 2008
- Wikisaurus at cross purposes - July 2008 - including whether all items in WS entries should link to WS or to WT - many participants
- Wikisaurus alteration - Sep 2008 - about the appearance of
- Moby Project - Sep 2008 - on importing Moby II thesaurus into Wikisaurus
- Proposed Wikisaurus style changes - Jan 2010
- International Wikisaurus - Jan 2010
- Vote on deleting Template:Wikisaurus-link- Jan 2010
- Poll: Deleting "/more" pages from Wikisaurus - Sep 2010
- Planned vote: Deleting Wikisaurus slash-more pages, Oct 2010; see also the vote
- A synonym of itself in Wikisaurus, Oct 2010
- "See also" in Wikisaurus, Nov 2010
An index to this page:
- All entries - see #All entries, Wiktionary:All Wikisaurus pages, and Category:Wikisaurus
- Example entries - see #Formatting
- Layout - see #Formatting
- Logo - see #Identity
- Monitoring - see #Recent changes
- Recent changes - see #Recent changes
- Requested entries - see /Requested entries and #Subpages
- Spelling - see #Identity
- Title - see #Identity