Help:Style conventions

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Note: This page was begun on 12 June 2009 and is still under construction.

Style conventions at ChoralWiki

The purpose of this page is to outline various style conventions in effect at ChoralWiki. These have evolved over the period of time since the inception of ChoralWiki in 2005, and the material presented here has been largely culled from norms specified in various places here, as well as from the practices adopted and agreed upon by Administrators. All users making contributions to ChoralWiki are strongly encouraged to become acquainted with and make use of the guidelines presented here, thereby reducing the workload on those having to make corrections to contributions in order to bring them into accord with style conventions.

I. General conventions

A. Language

  1. Page titles of works, publications, texts, or persons will be in their original language, where that language is written in Roman or modified-Roman letters. For languages not using Roman or modified-Roman letters, the page titles will be converted to Roman letters using some standard conversion method.
  2. Titles of other pages will primarily be in English; some will have translated sub-pages entirely in one language. For example, Main Page/fr. Titles of templates, categories, and ChoralWiki pages will be in English.
  3. Headings of sections and subsections of pages will be in English, but the text in sections and subsections can be in any language.
  4. Explanatory text and the "Description" and "Edition notes" sections can be in any language.
  5. Text of works can be in any language. Recommended that at least one edition be in the original language.
  6. [text direction: right-to-left vs. left-to-right ?]

B. Date and time

  1. On composer, lyricist, CPDL editor, and other person pages, dates are in the format 00 Month 0000, for example, 5 August 1794.
  2. In other places, dates should be in the MediaWiki format 0000-00-00, for example, 1988-07-31.
  3. Times are usually given in UTC (Coordinated Universal Time), a 24-hour system, for example, 16:43. Time can be added to the MediaWiki format if necessary, for example, 2002-03-03 15:02 – two minutes after three in the afternoon on 3 March 2002.

C. Page structure

Required sections and subsections of pages. Recommended sections and subsections in italics.
1. Work pages
Music files
Posted date and CPDL no.
Editor name and date
Score information
Edition notes
General Information
Voicing: number of voices, voices
Genre and subgenre
First published date
External websites
Original text and translations

2. Composer pages

Born date
Died date
List of choral works - SortWorks
External links

3. Lyricist pages

Born date
Died date
Settings of text
External links

4. Publication pages

General information
Full title
Editor or Compiler or Composer
Publication date and place
External links
List of works
Works at CPDL: MultiPubList

D. Other kinds of pages

  1. Text pages.
  2. Categories.
  3. Catalogs and lists.
  4. Disambiguation. Pages that help distinguish among pages that have the same or similar titles. These could be work pages, person pages, or text pages. See Help:Disambiguation

II. Style

A. Capitalization

B. Spelling and grammar

Titles of works and pages

In page names try to avoid the use of programming symbols such as brackets { } [ ], quotation marks ( " « » ) or the characters | / \ < > * ^ $ @ & # ~ ¦ .


In titles that are incipits (when the title is the same as the opening words) use sentence capitalization. In English, capitalize only the first word and any proper nouns. In other languages other capitalization standards may apply (eg. German, which capitalizes most nouns).1

For proper titles (different from the opening words) the English convention is that minor words are uncapitalized, such as pronouns (except "I" and, when it refers to the Deity, "Thee"), indefinite articles ("a", "an", "the"), standard conjunctions ("and", "or", "but", etc.), prepositions ("in", "of", "with", etc.). This is the convention many publishing houses use for book and other titles. An author might also decide that words other than proper nouns be uncapitalized. In German, Italian and other languages this case is not treated differently, i.e. sentence capitalization is the rule; in French however there is a large grey area.

For other CPDL pages, use sentence capitalization, eg. "CPDL passes the 10,000 score pages milestone" but "Help:Automated add score process", "Category:Solo SATB", "Template:LinkText.

Arranger information

When posting an arrangement of a work by another composer that is not a significant recomposition of a work listed at ChoralWiki, the arrangement should be posted on the work page with the original composer's name, and the Arranger template cited just beneath the "Edition notes:" section of the arranged edition. Examples of such arrangements include Descants composed for a hymn, minor reharmonizations of hymns or hymn settings, new accompaniments (other than Keyboard reductions of a cappella works or straightforward Keyboard reductions of instrumental accompaniments).

Transposed edition information

When posting a transposition of a work to a key different from the original, the "Edition notes:" section should contain the degree of transposition (eg. "up a minor third" or "up three semitones"), and a Voicing template added just beneath the "Edition notes:" section specifying any new voicing resulting from the transposition.


1 See Help:Score submission guide.