Tabula :: Quid est haec :: Nomina :: Map :: What is this? :: Latin names :: Donate


What are you doing with Latin place names?

We are finding Latin names for towns, cities, geographical features, and adding these to Vicipaedia (or Vicilibri) and Wikidata. We are then linking these Wikidata entries to the map data at Open Street Map. In addition, statues on Open Street Map can be linked to a Wikidata entry, either for the statue itself, or if that is lacking, to an entry for the person.

What kind of Latin names do you want?

We want attested place names, and we would like you to help. These can be from any Latin source, be that Roman, medieval, neo-Latin or ecclesiastical. Names that are fictional, your own invention or otherwise unattestable will be removed and could also lead to your account being limited or removed at Wikimedia or Open Street Map.

Vicipaedia have a good guide to what they regard as acceptable sources and Latin renderings. Please respect this policy (Latin, English). With individuals, their policy is to use Latin first names where one in common use (eg, Stephanus, Geraldus) but to leave second names as they are, unless the person used or had a Latin cognomen. 

How often do the names update?

Maptiler say they update their multilingual dataset monthly, so please do not expect instant gratification! Remember also that your improvements are contributing to better reusable data at Wikidata and a long term mapping effort at Open Street Map, so many more attempts at Latin language mapping can be made as a result of any work you do. 

How do I go about adding Latin place names?

If you have one or two names to add and don't want to learn how to do this yourself, feel free to contact us via the Open Latin project page.

If you want to add Latin names to this and other maps, these are the steps to follow using the example of Bewdley, or Bellus Locus, in England:

  1. Make sure you have a Wikimedia account. Log in when you make changes.
  2. Check for a page on Vicipaedia. If a page already exists, change the name of the page, by "moving" the page. Edit the page name and record the source. If you have any doubts use the talk page to discuss it with editors. Here is the page for Bellus Locus.
  3. If there is no page, then add a page to Vicilbri. Each place with a name needs a page, which will also record the source of that Latin name. Vicipaedia does not accept “stub” articles, so only add a new page to Vicipaedia if you want to write something substantial. Otherwise, add details at Vicilbri.
  4. For UK names, you can add a page to the Vicilibri book here. This is the example page for Bellus Locus. We will shortly add a book for non-UK names and sources.
  5. Your new page can now be linked to a Wikidata entry.
  6. Log in to Wikidata, and add an entry on your user page to let you see Latin entries easily such as {{#babel:en-N|la-2}} (this says you are a native English speaker and can also use Latin).
  7. Most places already have a Wikidata object. Here is the Wikidata entry for Bellus Locus. Add the page name to either "Wikipedia" and specifying "la" for Latin Wikipedia , or "Wikibooks", specififying "la" for Latin Wikibooks. Then add the name of the place to the Latin language field at the top of the page.
  8. Finally, you need to link the Open Street Map place object to Wikidata. 
  9. Make sure you have an OSM account.
  10. Find the OSM object (town name, etc) by a simple search. Click on the relevant result to select it
  11. Press "edit" to edit the selected object.
  12. In the list of tags, add a tag for "wikidata"
  13. Add the relevant Wikidata reference, in this case Q766594
  14. Save your changes with the button at the top right
  15. Optionally, edit your Vicilibri page to include a link back to Open Street Map.

Note that it is possible to add Latin names directly to Open Street Map, but this is disliked by the OSM community, whose ethos is to add information that can be found in the vicinity. They much prefer multilingual information to be obtained through linkage to the WIkidata entry.

That's it. It's simple after a couple of attempts!