[Foundation-l] Expertise and Wikipedia redux

Peter Damian peter.damian at btinternet.com
Sun Oct 17 07:53:24 UTC 2010

----- Original Message ----- 
From: "Peter Damian" <peter.damian at btinternet.com>
To: "Wikimedia Foundation Mailing List" <foundation-l at lists.wikimedia.org>
Sent: Sunday, October 17, 2010 8:37 AM
Subject: Re: [Foundation-l] Expertise and Wikipedia redux

> I haven't checked the related article on William Smith
> http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/William_Smith_(lexicographer) (he was the
> editor of Dictionary of Greek and Roman Biography and Mythology) but I bet
> the sentence "In 1867, he became editor of the Quarterly Review, which he
> directed with marked success until his death; his remarkable memory and
> accuracy, as well as his tact and courtesy, specially fitting him for such 
> a
> post." was lifted directly without any attempt at integration with the
> project.

I did check it and I was right.  The entire article, with the exception of 
two words, is lifted *verbatim* from Britannica 1911 
http://www.1911encyclopedia.org/Sir_William_Smith.  The 'specially fitting 
him for such a post' is a giveaway and an obvious POV.

Oddly, Smith's most lasting legacy, the Latin-English dictionary, is not 
mentioned as such.  That is because they did not know this in 1911.  It was 
revised and re-published many times afterwards. I have the 1965 edition, 
somewhat dog-eared.


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