Encyclopedia from Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

This page is the glossary written to help readers of Wikipedia.

For the glossary for editors of Wikipedia, see Wikipedia:Glossary.

For other useful ways of finding content, see Wikipedia:Directories and indexes, plus the navigational boxes at the side and very bottom of this page.


  • admin - short for administrator. A user with extra technical privileges for "custodial" work on Wikipedia – specifically, deleting and protecting pages, and blocking abusive users. See also sysop.
  • article - an encyclopedia entry. All articles are pages, but there are also pages that are not articles, such as this one.


  • broken link - a link to a nonexistent page, usually colored red.
  • blue link, bluelink - a wikilink to an article that already exists shows up blue - or purple if it has been recently visited by that reader.


  • category - a collection of pages linked by topic.
  • Community portal - one of Wikipedia's main project pages. It can often be found on the sidebar (on the left side in most skins), and is a page that lists the collaboration of the week, outstanding tasks that need to be addressed, and several other useful bits of information and resources. The Community Portal is useful for picking an article or topic to work on or read.
  • coordinates - articles about specific places may have coordinates. Clicking on these leads to a list of maps for the location.


  • disambiguation - the process of resolving the conflict that occurs when articles about two or more different topics have the same natural title.
  • disambiguation page - a page that contains various meanings of a word, and refers to the pages where the various meanings are defined. In cases when there is a prevailing meaning of the term, disambiguation pages are named "subject (disambiguation)".
  • discussion - a link at the top of a page that leads to the discussion for that page (also called its talk page).


  • editor - anyone who writes or modifies articles in a Wikipedia. Other terms with the same meaning: contributor, user.
  • external link - a link to a website not owned by Wikimedia. The alternatives are an internal link, wikilink or free link within Wikipedia, and an interwiki link to a sister project.


  • Featured article, an article that has been selected as representing "the best of Wikipedia".
  • free link - a link pointing to another page within Wikipedia or its sister projects, sometimes referred to as wikilinks or internal links. Unless otherwise specified in a user's monobook.css, these links usually show up as blue if they are working and you haven't visited them before, red if they are broken or don't yet exist, and purple if they are working and you have visited them before.



  • hatnote - a short note placed at the top of an article, or a section of an article, that helps readers locate a different article they might be seeking. A hatnote may be also used to direct readers to a more detailed or related article on a particular subject.
  • history - all previous versions of an article, from its creation to its current state. Also called page history.


  • interwiki - a link to a sister project; this can be an interlanguage link to a corresponding article in a different language in Wikipedia, or a link to another project.
  • IP (Internet Protocol) - a protocol used for communicating data across the Internet. The numerical IP address is used for tracking the edits of anonymous contributors (editors who are not logged into an account).
  • IPA (International Phonetic Alphabet) - widely used on Wikipedia to indicate pronunciation.
  • ISBN (International Standard Book Number) - these are usually shown as a wikilink. Clicking the link allows for searching a range of library cataogues for that particular book.


  • link - a string of coloured text making a hyperlink to give access to another document. On Wikipedia there may be wikilinks, external links, iterlanguage links or links to sister projects.


  • Main Page - the page to which every user not specifying an article is redirected. The Main Page contains links to current events, presents certain articles (like a featured article of the day and links to Wikipedia's newest articles), and serves as an entry point to browsing all articles by topic or other classification. Links to sister projects and other-language Wikipedias are also a prominent feature on the Main Page. Due to its high exposure, all content on the Main Page is protected.
  • MediaWiki - the software behind Wikipedia and its sister projects, as well as several projects not related to Wikimedia.


  • namespace - a way to classify pages. Wikipedia has namespaces for encyclopedia articles, pages about Wikipedia (project namespace), user pages (User:), special pages (Special:), template pages (Template:), and talk pages (Talk:, Wikipedia talk:, and User talk:), among others.


  • page - any individual topic within Wikipedia; the web page without the top, bottom and sidebars. Pages include articles, stubs, redirects, disambiguation pages, user pages, talk pages, documentation and special pages.
  • Portal - pages intended to serve as "Main Pages" for specific topics or areas.
  • protected page - indicates a page that cannot be edited except by administrators, or in some cases, established users.


  • Random page - a link on the left of each page for most skins. It will take you to a Wikipedia article that is chosen by a computer algorithm without any deliberate pattern or meaning to the choice.
  • Recent changes - a real-time list of changes Wikipedia editors have made to articles
  • Redirect, redir - a page title which, when requested, merely sends the reader to another page. This is used for synonyms and ease of linking. The name of the redirected page is shown under the title of the resulting target page. For example, impressionist might redirect to impressionism.
  • Red link, redlink - a wikilink to an article that does not exist shows up red. See also blue link.
  • Reference - a unique identifier for a source of information also called a citation. In the plural, References may also refer to the dedicated section near the bottom of most articles where the details on all sources of information cited in the article are grouped.


  • sister project- one of a number of wikis related to Wikipedia. They are listed on the Main Page.
  • skins - the appearance theme. Currently, the default skin is called Vector, and three others are available to logged-in users: Cologne Blue, Modern and Monobook.
  • stub - an article considered too short to give an adequate introduction to a subject (often one paragraph or less). Stubs are marked with stub templates, a specific type of cleanup template, which add the articles to stub categories sorted by subject matter.


  • Talk page - most pages have a Talk page (accessed via the "Talk" link at the top). A Talk page is for discussing improvements to the associated article/page.


  • wiki - any website that allows the easy creation and editing of any number of interlinked web pages via a web browser using a simplified markup language. (Wikipedia is probablyahem the most well known example.)
  • Wikibooks - a Wikipedia sister project that works to develop free textbooks, manuals, and other texts online.
  • wikilink - an internal link to another page within Wikipedia.

See also

Original content from Wikipedia, shared with licence Creative Commons By-Sa - Help:Glossary