Template:Infobox language

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Infobox language
  • Infobox language
Language codes
Language code
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This template is for use in articles about languages or dialects. It provides a common standard for displaying data about a language.


{{Infobox language
|name          = name of language #REQUIRED
|nativename    = native name of the language (or frequently a common non-native variant, as this field does not display 'native name')
|pronunciation = IPA pronunciation of the native name
|states        = {{Flag|Country1}} <br /> {{Flag|Country2}} countries in which it is mainly spoken
|region        = geographic region in which it is mainly spoken
|latd  =  | latm  = | latNS  =  <!-- latitude degrees/minutes/direction -->
|longd =  | longm = | longEW =  <!-- longitude degrees/minutes/direction -->
|ethnicity     = people for whom this is the ethnically native language; also good for the ethnic population if different from the number of speakers
              (although the names chosen for the articles on the people and on the language will generally be the same, it may be appropriate to pipe in the native name of the people here)
|speakers      = {{formatnum:number of native speakers}}
|signers       = number of people who sign that language; replaces 'speaker' field
|extinct       = date of extinction, or information about extinction; 'speakers' will not display
|era           = era of use of a historical language, such as one that developed into something else; 'speakers' will not display
|date          = date of estimate of number of speakers/signers (must start with a 4-digit year)
|ref           = reference for the number of speakers/signers. Appears after the (date) field.
|speakers2     = 2nd line (2nd estimate, 2nd country, L2 speakers, etc.)
|familycolor   = appropriate language family #REQUIRED
                 See table below for list of options. Please do not use other names, as they will not be recognised, and the table will be colored grey.
                 In most cases, 'familycolor' will trigger a default entry for the 'fam1' field, so that field is not necessary (you can continue will 'fam2'),
                 but you can override this by entering something under 'fam1'. For areal colors (American, Khoisan, Paleosiberian, etc.), you will be prompted
                 for a 'fam1' entry if you do not provide one. If 'isolate' or 'unclassified' is used, the fam1–xx tree will not display.
|fam1          = the broadest possible widely accepted [[language family]] of which the language is a part
|fam2          = a more specific sub-family
|fam15         = most specific sub group
|family        = whatever you want to say; fam1–xx will not display
|creator       = name of language creator
|created       = year of first creation
|setting       = the use or setting for a created language
|posteriori    = natural-language sources of a created language
|dia1          = a primary dialect
|dia2          = another primary dialect
|...             (up to 20)
|dialects      = whatever you want to say
|stand1        = a standardized register
|stand2        = a second standardized register
|...             (up to 6)
|standards     = whatever you want to say
|script        = the writing system(s) used for the language by literate speakers
|nation        = list of countries in which it is an official language
|minority      = list of countries in which it is a recognised minority language
|agency        = regulatory body or language academy for the language
|iso1          = the ISO 639-1 code for the language
|iso2          = the ISO 639-2 code for the language (not for its family)
|iso2b         = the ISO 639-2 bibliographic code
|iso2t         =  the ISO 639-2 terminological code
|iso3          = the ISO 639-3 code for the language. Use this codes supported by SIL but maintained at Linguist List.
                 Field will display even if left empty, unless 'lc1' etc. is used.
                 Use 'none' if the language (not dialect) has no iso3 code, and the article will be added to [[:Category:Languages without iso3 codes]].
|iso3comment   = though not directly encoded, if an ad-hoc parameter is placed on the line after iso3, a comment will be added to it w/o interfering w the link.
|lc1           = ISO code of the first dialect (the 'iso3' field will not display if empty and this is included)
|ld1           = name of the first language dialect
|lc2           = ISO code of the second dialect
|ld2           = name of the second language dialect
|...             (up to 45)
|linglist      = a private or local Linguist List ISO 639-3 code, also xxx-xxx format for dialects.
                 Use for code range qaa–qtz or those involving numerals only; enter other codes under 'iso3' and the reader will be redirected from Ethnologue.
|lingname      = comment on the Linguist List code or support
|linglist2/3   = additional Linguist List codes
|lingname2/3   = additional comments. (If Linguist List has redundant codes, write to them, and they will likely retire them.)
|lingua        = the Linguasphere code for the language
|image         = image at top of info box. Use format "image name.png", without "file/image" or brackets.
|imagesize     = override default image size (currently 250px). Use units ("123px", "12em")
|imagealt      = alt text for the image
|imagecaption  = caption to appear under image
|imageheader   = brief header for image (appears in the left-hand column)
|map           = image at bottom of info box. Use format "image name.png", without "file/image" or brackets.
|mapsize       = override default map size (currently 350px). Use units ("123px", "12em"). Affects both maps.
|mapalt        = alt text for the map
|mapcaption    = caption to appear under map
|map2          = a second map
|mapalt2       = alt text for the second map
|mapcaption2   = caption to appear under both maps
|boxsize       = overrides default width of infobox, currently set at 22em. Format must include units ("12em" or "123px").
                 Useful when an article has various infoboxes aligned in a column. (Box will automatically expand to fix map wider than default box width.)
|notice        = IPA/ipa [adds notice for IPA notation]
|notice        = Indic/indic [adds notice for Indic scripts]
|notice        = signnotice [adds links for sign languages]
|notice2       = [adds a 2nd notice]


The background colors used on Wikipedia for various language families and groups
Afro-Asiatic Nilo-Saharan? Niger–Congo Khoisan (areal)
Indo-European Caucasian (areal) Uralic Dravidian Altaic Paleosiberian (areal)
Sino-Tibetan Hmong–Mien Tai–Kadai Austro-Asiatic Austronesian Papuan (areal) Australian (areal)
Eskimo–Aleut Na-Dené American (areal)
Creole/Pidgin/Mixed language isolate sign language unclassified
See alsoWikipedia:WikiProject Languages

The template should placed at the very top of the wikitext of the article, before any text. The absolute basic syntax is as shown below:

{{Infobox language ← this calls the template
|name=name of language ← the name of the language needs to be given
|familycolor=appropriate language family ← refer to the coloured chart to the right (or above, depending on your browser), and type the name shown there; this will add the appropriate family color to the template top
}} ← this ends the template call

However, you will probably want to add more than just this. Other parameters are listed below, they can be incorporated anywhere between the first and last lines, and in any order.

Additional parameters[edit]

There are several more parameters that can be defined between the opening and closing lines. These are:

|nativename=additional or native name of the language [most of these are not actually the native name]
|altname=secord additional or native name
|states=countries in which it is mainly spoken ← you do not have to define both this and region
|region=geographic region in which it is mainly spoken ← you do not have to define both this and states; use this parameter for a single statement about geographic distribution
|speakers=the number of native speakers of the language. If no date is supplied, missing date will be displayed.
|date=the date of publication of the estimate of the number of speakers.
Used for calculations for obsolete data, so needs to start with a 4-digit year. Exception: If ⟨NA⟩ is entered, nothing will display. If ⟨no date⟩ is entered, "no date" will display.
Articles with old dates (currently ≥ 30 years) appear in Category:Language articles with old speaker data.
|ref=reference for the speaker data.
If ⟨e16⟩ is entered, this will automatically generate a reference to the Ethnologue 16 article that bears the ISO 639-3 code entered at 'iso3'.
To link to the auto-generated reference from elsewhere in the article, use <ref name=e16/>.
⟨e15⟩ can be used to ref the 15th edition, for example for extinct languages which are no longer supported.
|speakers2=a 2nd line for speaker data, such as L2 speakers, appearing after the date.
If this is a second line of L1 speakers, it should be arranged so that, if there are two dates cited, the oldest appears in the date parameter, for automated update calculations. Data from different countries should not be added together if they are not comparable: say if one is from 1973 and another from 2006, or if one is rounded to the nearest million and another is on the order of 10,000.
|iso1=the ISO 639-1 code for the language
|iso2=the ISO 639-2 code for the language; creates a link to the ISO page ← see just hereafter for the situation where a language has two ISO 639-2 codes
|iso3=the ISO 639-3 code for the language; creates a link to the ISO page ← see below for the situation where multiple ISO 639-3 codes apply; if there is no ISO 639-3 code, set |iso3=none to return the text none and add the article to a list of uncoded languages
|lingua=the Linguasphere code for the language
|linglist(2,3)=the Linguist List code(s) for the language. May be a proper ISO code maintained at Linguist List, or a local non-ISO code; creates a link to the Linguist List page.
|lingname(2,3)=the Linguist List name for the language, or other comment
If any of these are unknown, simply leave them out: the template will provide a default text. If a language has two ISO 639-2 codes, one will be defined as the bibliographic code, and the other terminological. These can be added in separate fields using the following parameters:
|iso2b=the ISO 639-2 bibliographic code
|iso2t=the ISO 639-2 terminological code

Genetic classification[edit]

You can use the language template to show the genetic classification of a language at a glance. This classification is displayed as a descending staircase of language families, from the broadest to the most specific. To add the genetic classification use the following:

|fam1=the broadest possible widely accepted language family of which the language is a part ← if this would be exactly the same as you have defined for familycolor, it may be omitted
|fam2=a more specific sub-family
|fam3=a more specific group

You can keep adding parameters in like fashion until you have completed the classification. If you would prefer to enter some other information in this box (for example, disputed), use this parameter instead:

|family=whatever you want to say

Optional parameters[edit]

Some parts of the template remain invisible unless they are specifically called. Only use these parameters if they are required.

|fontcolor=colour of font against 'familycolor' ← the font colour is usually black, use this to change it if it is difficult to read
|pronunciation=pronunciation of the native name of the language in IPA → remember to enclose the transcription in an IPA template such as {{IPA-all}}
|nation=list of countries in which it is an official language
|minority=list of countries in which it is a recognised minority language
|agency=regulatory body or language academy for the language
|extinct=date of extinction, or information about extinction ← this replaces speakers
|era=era of use of an ancestral form of a language ← this replaces speakers
|script=writing system(s) used to represent the language ← in the form script (instantiation), such as "Latin (English alphabet)"
(Common variants of "Latin (alphabet)" redirect to Latin script. For the Latin alphabet itself, add an element such as &nbsp;.)

Language with more than one ISO 639-3 code[edit]

Some languages have a number of ISO 639-3 codes, one for each dialect of that language. If you try putting all of these codes in the usual iso3= parameter, it will get quite messy. Instead, use the following parameters:

|lc1=language code of the first dialect
|ld1=name of the first language dialect

For subsequent dialects, use lc2 and so forth. Lc entries will be automatically linked to the Ethnologue site. Wikipedia articles on the dialects may be linked from the ld entries..

For languages with an ISO 639-3 macrolanguage code and several individual codes, use iso3 for the macrolanguage and lcn, ldn for the individual codes.

Sign languages[edit]

This template is appropriate to use for sign languages. The following parameter is used instead of speakers:

|signers=number of people who sign that language

Once this parameter is defined or familycolor=Sign is set, the rest of the template makes sure that any reference to 'speaking' is replaced by ones to 'signing'. Setting this parameter automatically makes the coloured bars of the infobox , the colour defined for sign languages, and provides a default of iso2=sgn if no other text is provided. All the other parameters work in exactly the same way.

Constructed languages[edit]

This template is appropriate to use for constructed languages. The following parameters can be used:

|creator=name of language creator
|created=year of first creation
|setting=the use or setting for the language
|posteriori=natural-language sources

Using these parameters, or setting familycolor=Conlang, automatically sets the coloured bars of the infobox to black background with white fonts, and removes the states and region parameters from use (nation is also disabled). If the iso2 parameter is left undefined, it is treated as being iso2=art. For conlangs, the family or famn parameters are used to describe the hierarchy of purpose of the language, whereas posteriori is used to describe the a posteriori sources on which the conlang draws.

Images in the template[edit]

You cannot put large images into the language template: they just make it very messy. You can place a small image at the top of the template using the following parameters:

|image=image name.png
|imagesize=200px ← overrides the default image size
|imagealt=alt text
|imageheader=very simple description of image ('logo', 'map', 'script', etc.) ← this is placed in the left-hand column

If you have a slightly larger image or two, such as a map, you can place at the bottom of the template, spanning both columns, with the following parameter:

|map(2)=image name.png
|mapsize=300px ← overrides the default image size
|mapalt(2)=alt text

The usual image markup applies for both images. Alt text is for visually impaired readers, and the caption is for all readers; typically they should have little in common (see WP:ALT).

Footer notice[edit]

A notice or notices may be placed at the bottom of the infobox:

|notice(2)=ipa ← places a notice about the Unicode fonts used for displaying IPA
|notice(2)=signnotice ← adds various links for sign languages
|notice(2)=Indic ← places a notice about Indic-font support


  1. Template:Infobox language/codelist
  2. Template:Infobox language/family-color
  3. Template:Infobox language/genetic
  4. Template:Infobox language/linguistlist
  5. Template:Infobox language/ref
  6. Template:Infobox language/quilt
  7. Template:Infobox language/IPA notice
  8. Template:Infobox language/Indic
  9. Template:Infobox language/signnotice

See also[edit]

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