What is Wikitext?

"Wikitext language" or "wiki markup "is a markup language that offers a simplified alternative to HTML and is used to write pages in wiki websites such as Wikipedia. "Wikitext" is text in this language.

There is no commonly accepted standard wikitext language. The grammar, structure, features, keywords and so on are dependent on the particular wiki software used on the particular website. For example, all wikitext markup languages have a simple way of hyperlinking to other pages within the site, but there are several different syntax conventions for these links. Many wikis, especially the earlier ones, use CamelCase to mark words that should be automatically linked. In some wikis (such as Wikipedia and other MediaWiki-based wikis) this convention was abandoned in favor of explicit link markup, e.g. with [[…]].

Some Wiki programs allow extensive optional use of HTML tags within wikitext, others a smaller subset, and still others no HTML at all. In some cases, restrictions on HTML may be wisely determined by each site that uses the program.

"MediaWiki", the software that runs Wikipedia, has a wiki markup language that allows many common HTML tags; it is intended to provide an alternative syntax to allow some users to use it without knowing HTML.

How to edit existing articles?

Absolute beginners?

If you can type and click, you can edit most pages on this wiki.

  • Find a page to improve. If you want, you can practice in the Sandbox first. It's there for "practicing", or experimenting with almost anything. It's a good place to get used to how the wiki works.
  • Click "Edit" tab on the top of the page.
  • An "edit box" will open - type your new sentences or corrections (just like MS or Lotus or WordPerfect wordprocessing).
  • Click the "Save" button- well, it may be wise to hit the "Preview" button first, in case of mistakes!
  • You're now a Web Publisher. Welcome to the team!

Where can I edit?

  • You can edit any page where you can see an edit tab. The changes that you make will show on the page as soon as you save.
  • As with all wikis, you can edit any non-protected page on this Wikia.
  • Pages that start with User: are personal pages. It's considered polite to ask before doing major edits to these pages.

More details

  • Explain your edit in the "Summary" box. This is between the edit window and the bottom row of grey buttons. You only need to type a short message here, for example 'added introduction'.
  • Use the "Show preview" button to check your edit before saving. Remember to save your preview before moving on.
  • If you are logged in, you can mark an edit as minor by checking the "This is a minor edit" box. This lets other editors know your edit is very small.

How to create a new article?

  • The easiest option would be to click on the "create new article" link on the navigation pane, seen on the left side bar of every page on this wikia.
  • Also, to start a new page, you can click a link to the new page. This takes you to edit mode of the non-existing blank page, which allows creation. You might not be able to create a new page unless you are logged in.
  • Another way to start a new page,is to perform a search for the new title with the "Go" button. When the search finds nothing, press "create the article".
  • If you just want to experiment, use the sandbox first.

See also Help:New page

How to format my edits?

Most text formatting is usually done with wiki markup, so you don't have to learn HTML.

Bold and italics

Bold and italics are added by surrounding a word or phrase with multiple apostrophes ('):

  • ''italics'' is rendered as italics. (2 apostrophes on each side)
  • '''bold''' is rendered as bold. (3 apostrophes on each side)
  • '''''bolded italics''''' is rendered as bolded italics. (2 + 3 = 5 apostrophes on each side)

Headings and subheadings

Headings and subheadings are an easy way to improve the organization of an article. If you can see two or more distinct topics being discussed, you can break up your article by inserting a heading for each section.

Headings can be created like this:

  • ==Main heading== (2 equals signs)
  • ===Subheading=== (3 equals signs)
  • ====Another level down==== (4 equals signs)
  • =====Another level down===== (5 equals signs)

If an article has at least three headings, a table of contents (TOC) will be automatically generated. Try creating some headings in the Sandbox and see the effect on the TOC.


To indent text, place a colon (:) right at the beginning of a line. The more colons you put, the further indented the text will be. A newline (pressing Enter or Return) marks the end of the indented paragraph.

For example:
This is aligned all the way to the left.

:This is indented slightly.
::This is indented more.

is shown as:
This is aligned all the way to the left.

This is indented slightly.
This is indented more.

Bullet points

To insert a bullet, use an asterisk (*). Similar to rectal indentation, more asterisks in front of a paragraph means more indentation.

A brief example:

*First list item
*Second list item
**Sub-list item under second
*Isn't this fun?

Which is shown as:

  • First list item
  • Second list item
    • Sub-list item under second
  • Isn't this fun?

Numbered lists

You can also create numbered lists. For this, use the number sign or hash symbol (#). Using more #s will affect the level of indenting.


#First item
#Second item
##Sub-item under second item
#Third item

Shows up as:

  1. First item
  2. Second item
    1. Sub-item under second item
  3. Third item

See Here for More Examples

How to create links?

Links are important on wikis to help readers navigate your site.

Internal links

  • You can extensively cross-reference wiki pages using internal links. You can add links to existing titles, and also to titles you think ought to exist in future.
  • To make a link to another page on the same wiki, just put the title in double square brackets.

For example, if you want to make a link to, say, the Main Page, it would be:

[[Main Page]]
  • If you want to use words other than the article title as the text of the link, you can add an alternative name by adding it after a pipe "|" divider (SHIFT + BACKSLASH on English-layout and other keyboards).

For example, if you wanted to make a link to the Main Page, but wanted it to say "home page" you would write it as such:

View the [[Main Page|home page]]...

It would appear as:

View the home page...
  • When you want to use the plural of an article title (or add any other suffix) for your link, you can add the extra letters directly outside the double square brackets.

For example, you would write:

Add questions to the Wikia for [[quiz]]zes.

It would appear as:

Add questions to the Wikia for quizzes. (the link will be red if this page does not yet exist)

Interwiki links

  • To link to another Wikia, you can use its title followed by a colon and the article name, instead of using the full URL.

For example, the Creatures Wiki home page is at Creatures:Main Page, which can be typed as

[[Creatures:Main Page]]
rather than as
  • This style of link works for any wiki in the interwiki map, not just for Wikia. See the Central Wikia page at Wikia:Help:Interwiki link.

External links

  • If you want to link to a site outside of Wikia, you may just type the full URL for the page you want to link to.
  • It is often more useful to make the link display something other than the URL, so use one square bracket at each end, with the alternative title after the full URL address, separated by a space (not a pipe). So if you want the link to appear as Google search engine, just type:
[ Google search engine]

What are categories and how to use them?

A category is a software feature of MediaWiki. Categories provide automatic indexes that are useful as tables of contents. Together with links and templates they structure a project.

A page in any namespace can be put in a category by adding a category tag to the page (by convention, at the end of the page), e.g.:[[Category:Category name]]

This lists the page on the appropriate category page automatically and also provides a link at the bottom of the page to the category page, which is in the namespace "Category". Pages can be included in more than one category by adding multiple category tags. These links do not appear at the location where you inserted the tag, but at the page margin in a fixed place, depending on the skin (the bottom for Monobook, the upper right corner for Standard). Category tags may be placed anywhere in the article, although they are typically added to the end of the article to avoid undesirable text display side effects.

To be specific, in order to add an article called "Albert Einstein" to the category "People", you would edit the article and add "[[Category:People]]" (no quotes) into its page source somewhere. Exactly where doesn't matter, but the Wikipedia policy, for example, is to put it after the article text, but before any interlanguage links.

In order to reference a category within a page as a normal wiki link (without adding the page to the category) prefix the link name with a colon. For example: [[:Category:Category name]]

What is a template?

Templates are segments of Wiki markup that are meant to be copied automatically ("transcluded") into a page. You add them by putting the template's name in {{double braces}}.

Some templates take parameters, as well, which you separate with the pipe character. Use {{SITENAME}} to see the current Wikia. For instance, {{SITENAME}} on this site prints out as Human Science.

That and a few other templates are common to MediaWiki sites.

Check the current list of all templates on this Wikia.

You can create templates. After you create the page Template:XXX, using the command {{XXX}} will include that content in your current page. So, if you have something that needs to be included on many other pages, you might want to use a template.

Most templates available on the Central Wikia can be used on individual wikia with just "wikia:" prefixed to the name. See the help page on Central at Wikia:Help:Shared templates.

How to add an image?

To add an image, the image file has to be uploaded. There are two easy steps to upload an image file.

  1. Click the button with a green arrow from the row of buttons found on top of any edit box to upload and insert an image inline.
  2. Another simple method is just click on the "Upload file" link seen on the left side bar.

To incorporate your image in an artic.le you need to use the image markup. As an example in its simplest form, to produce an image at the top of this page insert the following text into an article:

[[Image:Example.png|thumb|right|Example image caption]]

Where the image is called Example.png. Using "thumb" forces the creation of a thumbnail; replace "Example image caption" with a suitable caption.

See also Help:Images

Back to Help:Contents

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