Help:Page numbers

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Page numbers

Documentation for using page numbering on Wikisource.


Wikisource transcriptions replace the number at the top or bottom of a page (eg. a printed work), avoiding the need for page-breaks in the text.

Page numbers are separated from the main body of the text on Wikisource. When proofreading pages in the Page namespace, page numbers should be transcribed into the header or footer. They will then be visible in the Page namespace, with the complete content of the page scan, but they will not be displayed in the main page.

However, page numbers should be included in pages field of the Index page of a work being transcribed. The page numbers used here will be visible in the main namespace as links floating along the left-hand-side of the text using the code in Mediawiki:PageNumbers.js. These links highlight the corresponding page when hovered over, and will link to the original page scan in the Page namespace. Therefore, all page numbers used in the Index page should be as faithful to the original page numbering as possible.

Page numbers in the Index namespace[edit]

See Multilingual Wikisource

The pages field of the Index page template is usually filled with the <pagelist /> command. Pagelist will automatically list all pages in the associated scan (assuming a DjVu or PDF file). This command can include a list of parameters to generate a full page list that faithfully reproduces the page numbering of the original work.

Set page numbers[edit]

The most basic way to use pagelist is to set a page number. This is commonly done to set the first numbered page of the text. The parameter is A=B, where A is the page of the scanned document and B is the desired page number to be displayed. The sequence of numbers will continue automatically from the set number.

For example, if the page in the scanned work with the page number 1 is the tenth page of the scan, the command would be <pagelist 10=1 />. This is necessary because scanned works will rarely start on the page numbered "1". Page numbering will continue in sequence after the page set to be 1, so the eleventh page of the scan will be numbered 2, the twelfth page will be numbered 3, etc.

Pages do not need to be set to numbers.

An example of a non-numeric page number is <pagelist 7="Title" />, which will use the word "Title" for the page number of the 7th page of the scan.

Non-numeric page numbers included in this way should be enclosed in quotation marks (" ").

Certain characters cannot be included, for example [, ], [[, ]], {{, }}, {, }, (, ), ., ', amongst others as these can be confused either with wiki-markup, or with internal syntax used in the construction of the page numbering displayed next to transcluded text.

It is strongly advised against using long non-numeric strings (or those containing spaces) for non-numeric page numbers, as this will probably overlap the main text in certain layouts.

If providing a series of values for A=B the definitions must be provided (along with those below) in ascending order. Out-of-order definitions are not reliably processed.

Set range[edit]

Ranges of pages can be used instead of individual pages. The parameter is AtoB=C, where A is the start of the range in the scanned document, B is the end of the range and C is the desired page number.

For example, the parameter <pagelist 1to9=- /> will display the first nine pages of the page list (corresponding to the first nine pages of the scanned document) as a hyphen ("-").

Set style[edit]

Page numbering can be set to one of a few styles. If no style is set, the display will default to arabic numerals (eg. 1, 2, 3, etc). This is used with the methods for page numbering (or page naming) as described. To set an individual page, use A=style; to set a range of pages, use AtoB=style.

For example, to have the pages 10 to 20 display in lowercase roman numerals (which is common for front matter in some works, the code to be used would be 10to20=roman.

Pagelist styles
Style Effect
roman Displays numbers as lowercase roman numerals (eg. i, ii, iii, etc)
highroman Displays numbers as uppercase roman numerals (eg. I, II, III, etc)
empty Displays page numbers as unlinked. Do not use this style. Instead, set the page's status to Without text.
folio Counts every leaf (folio) instead of page. The front side of the leaf is labelled r for "recto", the back side v for "verso". So 1to4=folio gives: 1r 1v 2r 2v
folioroman As folio, but with lower-case Roman numerals (ir iv iir iiv)
foliohighroman As folio, but with upper-case Roman numerals (Ir Iv IIr IIv)


Multiple parameters can be combined in the page list by including them in series. It can be helpful, by making the commands clearer and more legible, to have each parameter on a different line:

Parameters must be provided in ascending order of the page numbers being defined.

Example 1
<pagelist 1to9=- 10=1 10to20=roman 21=1 />
Example 2

Un-numbered pages[edit]

Pages that do not have a printed page number (either on the page or by inference from the sequence of other pages) still require some numbering or symbol in the pagelist, a hyphen (-) or en-dash(–) is commonly used to mark pages with no content on them. If no number or symbol is provided, the numbering from previous pages will be continued into the un-numbered pages (or it will start from 1 if no appropriate previous sequence is available).


There is a tool to assist in importing pagelists from sources such as the Internet Archive and Hathi Trust: see Help:Gadget-ImportPagelist.

Page numbers in the Page namespace[edit]

When transcribing a page in the Page namespace, page numbers and similar details should be transcribed into either the header or footer. Page numbers at the top of the page should be transcribed into the header; page numbers at the bottom of the page should be transcribed in the footer of the page. This ensures that all the text is transcribed and can be seen in the Page namespace but that it will not be transcluded into the main namespace.

Page numbers should not be transcribed into the main window. The text in main window will be transcluded in the main namespace, in which page numbers should not appear (except floating page links generated by the system).


Standard formatting techniques and templates can be used to format page numbers and some specific templates exist to make this easier.

If the page number is on the left side of the page, it can be left as it is. Centered page numbers can be created with the {{center}} template. Page numbers on the right side of the page can be positioned with the {{right}} template.

For example:

pg. 1

pg. 1



In some cases, usually the header, page numbers are combined with other elements such as chapter titles, chapter numbers, dates and other details. Often these follow the pattern of an item on the left, in the center and/or on the right. This format can be achieved with the {{RunningHeader}} template (abbreviated to {{rh}}).

The general usage of this template is: {{RunningHeader|left|center|right}}.

For example:

{{RunningHeader||The Final Chapter|240}}
{{RunningHeader|Smith, J|Paper title|123}}
The Final Chapter
Smith, J
Paper title

Note the use of the abbreviated version of the template in the last example.

Other effects can be combined to mimic the printed version as much as possible. For example, a running header with additional text effects and a full horizontal rule can be created like this:


5-entry headers such as appear on some works (notably Dictionaries) can also be represented with {{RunningHeader}}:

{{RunningHeader|5|Aa|Dictionary of Terms|Aa|6}}
Dictionary of Terms

{{RunningHeader|2|{{sc|Ch.}} 2.|''Army (Annual) Act'', 1896.||59 {{sc|Vict.}}}}
Ch. 2.
Army (Annual) Act, 1896.
59 Vict.

Page numbers in the Main namespace[edit]


Page numbers are displayed in the main namespace when works are transcluded from the Index and Page namespaces. These page numbers appear as links that float to the left of the text, near the part of the text that corresponds to each page. The numbers or symbols used for the links are derived from the pagelist in the Index page.

These page numbers have the following additional functions:

  • Highlight text: When the mouse-pointer is hovered over the page number, the text derived from the corresponding page will be highlighted.
  • Link to source: Each page number is a wikilink to the corresponding page in the Page namespace.
  • Anchors: Each page number acts as a link anchor, so html and wikilinks can be made to jump to specific pages in the transcluded text. For example, the page "12" of the text in "My Book" could be linked to via [[My Book#12]].

Hard coded[edit]

Page numbers should not be entered directly into the text in the main namespace, just as they should not be included in the body of the text in the Page namespace. If page numbers have been included, they should be removed or the page should be tagged with {{numbers}} to alert other users that the numbers need to be removed.

Related maintenance[edit]

Relevant maintenance tags include: