2019 Coolest Tool Award Winner
in the category
QuickStatements (QS) is a tool, written by Magnus Manske, that can edit Wikidata items, based on a simple set of text commands. The tool can add and remove statements, labels, descriptions and aliases; as well as add statements with optional qualifiers and sources. The command sequence can be typed in the import window or created in a spreadsheet or text editor and pasted in. It can also be created by external code like Lua, called from a template and passed as a URL. Data edited in OpenRefine can also be exported to the QuickStatements format.
QuickStatements tool went through several iterations and rewrites. You should always use the current version of this tool whenever possible. There are several QuickStatements versions available:
- QuickStatements version 2 (V2) rewrite or new interface (current version)
- Release history
- QuickStatements version 2 (V2) original or old interface
- QuickStatements version 1 (V1) (works no longer)
Syntax between versions can vary slightly. The rest of the document will describe the syntax of the current version, but will mark parts which were not supported in the earlier versions.
Command sequence syntax
This section describes syntax used since V1 version of the tool, sometimes referred to as V1 commands.
Add simple statement
You can specify the statements to add by typing/pasting into the tool's text area. Different parts of the statement are separated by a TAB or "|" characters. Each command is in a new line, or separated by "||" characters. Hint: You can also use a spreadsheet software such as Microsoft Excel or LibreOffice Calc; copying/pasting the cells should automatically insert TABs. Also text editors like Notepad++ allow replacement of any symbol by the TAB character (\t).
Each statement must consist of an entity, a property, and a value. An entity can be an item, a property, a lexeme, a form, or a sense. A value can be another entity, a string, a time, a location, or a quantity, depending on the property type, or one of the special values somevalue or novalue (see Unknown or no values).
Formatting of each part:
- Items on Wikidata are always in the form Qxx. On Commons they are always in the form Mxx. In QuickStatements version 1 one could use an article name instead of the q-code, if one filled in a xxwiki value in the input box above the text area; the correct item number (if available) was retrieved automatically.
- Example: Q4115189 TAB P31 TAB Q1
- Meaning: add to Wikidata Sandbox (Q4115189)instance of (P31)Universe (Q1)
- Properties in the form Pxx.
- Lexemes in the form Lxxx.
- Forms in the form Lxxx-Fyy.
- Senses in the form Lxxx-Syy.
- Strings (including URLs, and numerical values of text fields, for example external-ID property values) must be in "double quotes". Many statements take values in string format, including external identifiers (like VIAF ID (P214)), filenames (like image (P18)) or other page names (like Commons category (P373)).
- Example: Q41576278 TAB P373 TAB "Antoni Ignacy Mietelski"
- Meaning: add to Antoni Ignacy Mietelski (Q41576278)Commons category (P373)Antoni Ignacy Mietelski
- Caution: Some characters in the string seem to confuse the tool. Those include: "_" (underscore), " (double quote), " " (spaces), "=", and possibly more. Adding URLs with those characters, like this one or this might fail. String and URLs with those characters might work when interacting with the tool through the interface but fail when interacting through URL.
- Monolingual text prefix text in "double quotes" with the language and a colon, e.g. en:"Some text"
- Example: Q1214098 TAB P1476 TAB pl:"Krzyżacy"
- Meaning: add to The Knights of the Cross (Q1214098)title (P1476)"Krzyżacy" (Polish)
- Time values must be in format eg +1967-01-17T00:00:00Z/11, where /11 designates the precision. The precision is: 0 - billion years, 1 - hundred million years, ..., 6 - millennium, 7 - century, 8 - decade, 9 - year (default), 10 - month, 11 - day,
12 - hour, 13 - minute, 14 - second.
- Example: Q41576483 TAB P569 TAB +1839-00-00T00:00:00Z/9
- Meaning: add to Bronisław Podbielski (Q41576483)date of birth (P569)+1839
- Use "-" for dates BC; and use at least 4 digits.
- Set an additional "/J" if you want to set the date in Julian Calendar (see this list to understand where this should be done).
- If submitting to the API, use "%09" instead of the TAB symbol, "%2B" instead of the "+" symbol, "%3A" instead of the ":" symbol, and "%2F" instead of the "/" symbol.
- Location coordinates in the form of @LAT/LON, with LAT and LON as decimal numbers.
- Example: Q3669835 TAB P625 TAB @43.26193/10.92708
- Meaning: add location to San Dalmazio Church (Q3669835)
- Quantity in the form of amount~toleranceUxx, with amount and tolerance being a rational numbers and Uxx being the item number of a unit (Qxx). Unit and tolerance values are optional. Don't leave any spaces in the quantity definition.
- QuickStatements version 1 used different syntax for Quantity: amount[lower,upper]Uxx, with amount, lower and upper being a rational numbers.
- lower, upper are optional and must be either both present or both absent. When present, they should be enclosed in square brackets and separated by ,
- amount, lower and upper must use . as decimal separator, must not use any thousands separator and may be prefixed by "+" or "-".
- 10, 10U11573, -10[-12.5,-7.5], 0[-5,5]U11573 are all valid quantities (where U11573 indicates metre (Q11573))
- Quantities with tolerance may be entered as 1.2~0.3 in QuickStatements version 2, which is the same as 1.2[0.9,1.5] in QuickStatements version 1 and means 1.2±0.3. 
- QuickStatements version 1 used different syntax for Quantity: amount[lower,upper]Uxx, with amount, lower and upper being a rational numbers.
- somevalue for unknown value Help
- novalue for no value Help. It seems that for simple statements novalue works with and without double quotes around it, producing the same outcome. However that is no longer true in case of complex statements (with qualifiers), where only novalue without double-quotes will work.
Add statement with qualifiers
Each statement "triplet" can be followed by an unlimited number of "qualifiers pairs" of property TAB value.
- Example: Q41577083 TAB P570 TAB +1600-00-00T00:00:00Z/7 TAB P1319 TAB +1586-00-00T00:00:00Z/9
- Meaning: add to Gian Federigo Bonzagna (Q41577083)date of death (P570)16. century
earliest date (P1319)+1586
Add statement with sources
Each statement can be followed by an unlimited number of "source pairs" to add references of source property TAB value. The source property is identical to the "normal" property, except it uses the form Sxx instead of Pxx.
- Example: Q22124656 TAB P21 TAB Q6581097 TAB S143 TAB Q24731821 TAB S813 TAB +2017-10-04T00:00:00Z/11
- Meaning: add to Gotô Ichijô (Q22124656)sex or gender (P21)male (Q6581097) with reference imported from Wikimedia project (P143)Commons Creator page (Q24731821)
By default, all sources will go into the same "reference group" (a block of property/value pairs). If you want to create more than one reference group in a single command row, simply prefix the first source property of the new group with an exclamation mark: "!Sxx" instead of "Sxx". (In the first reference group, the "!" is optional and will not influence the outcome.)
- Existing statements with an exact match (property and value) will not be added again; however additional references might be added to the statement.
- You can mix qualifiers and references in the same statement. Just use Sxx instead of Pxx when using sources.
- In QuickStatements version 1 each source claim represented an individual reference, i.e. they were not grouped within one reference; it works properly now in QuickStatements version 2.
Adding labels, aliases, descriptions and sitelinks
As with adding simple text statements, each command must consist of an item, a command, and a string in double quotes.
- To add a label in a specific language to an item, use "Lxx" instead of a property, with "xx" as the language code.
- Example: Q340122 TAB Lpl TAB "Cyprian Kamil Norwid"
- Meaning: add Polish label "Cyprian Kamil Norwid" to Cyprian Norwid (Q340122)
- To add an alias in a specific language to an item, use "Axx" instead of a property, with "xx" as the language code.
- Example: Q340122 TAB Aen TAB "Cyprjan Kamil Norwid"
- Meaning: add English alias "Cyprjan Kamil Norwid" to Cyprian Norwid (Q340122)
- Tip: Multiple aliases can be added at the same time by separating them with the pipe character ("|").
- Example: Q340122 TAB Aen TAB "Cyprian Kamil Norwid|Cypryan Kamil Norvid"
- To add a description in a specific language to an item, use "Dxx" instead of a property, with "xx" as the language code.
- Example: Q340122 TAB Dde TAB "polnischer Dichter"
- Meaning: add German description "polnischer Dichter" to Cyprian Norwid (Q340122)
- To add a sitelink to a specific page on a site to an item, use "Sxxx" instead of a property, with "xxx" as the site (e.g. enwiki, commonswiki).
- Example: Q340122 TAB Szhwiki TAB "塞浦路斯·諾爾維特"
- Meaning: add sitelink to Chinese Wikipedia (塞浦路斯·諾爾維特) to Cyprian Norwid (Q340122)
If you want to remove a label/description/sitelink, the value has to be an empty string and the rest of the command will be the same.
|Please ensure you do not create duplicate items!|
You can create new items by inserting a line consisting only of the word "CREATE". To add statements to the newly created item, use the word "LAST" instead of the Q number, and the statement will be added to the last created item.
An example for creating a new item, adding a sitelink, and setting a label:
- LAST TAB Sfrwiki TAB "Le croissant magnifique!"
- LAST TAB Lfr TAB "Le croissant magnifique!"
- Meaning: create a new item with a link to French Wikipedia w:fr:Le croissant magnifique! and with French label "Le croissant magnifique!"
Properties may be created in the same way with "CREATE_PROPERTY" followed by a TAB or | and the entity type, e.g. one of:
This is mostly of use on third-party Wikibase instances, as property creation is restricted on Wikidata.
You can merge two items. The first item will be merged and (if successful) redirected into the second item.
MERGE TAB Qsource TAB Qdestination
You can remove specific statements by prefixing a line with "-".
- Example: -Q4115189 TAB P31 TAB Q1
- Meaning: remove from Wikidata Sandbox (Q4115189)instance of (P31)Universe (Q1)
Dates with precision>9 can be removed via their specific date:
-Q98426308 P585 +1988-05-11T00:00:00Z/11
Dates with precision≤9 may use either 00-00 or 01-01 as their month-date value, so it may be necessary to attempt to remove both:
-Q98426308 P585 +1988-01-01T00:00:00Z/9 -Q98426308 P585 +1988-00-00T00:00:00Z/9
In addition you may remove statements with a specific statement ID using the following syntax:
- -STATEMENT TAB Q1$00000000-0000-0000-0000-000000000000
The statement ID can be received by:
- The source code of any entity page, where the ID may be found in the
<div>elements with "wikibase-statementview" class
- name of statement node in RDF which may be queried by query service (you need to replace the - after entity ID with $)
Every command can have a comment at its end, which will be inserted into the edit summary for the command. Use the /* ... */ syntax. Before this a TAB may be inserted. Spaces around the comment will be removed before processing. The tool splits adding of a claim and its reference in two edits. When using the "version 1 format" import it seems not to be possible to add a comment for the edit adding the reference. The comment is added to the edit adding the claim (if the claim does not exist yet and is added at all).
- Example: Q4115189 TAB P31 TAB Q1 /* This is a comment. */
- Meaning: add to Wikidata Sandbox (Q4115189)instance of (P31)Universe (Q1), with "This is a comment." in the edit summary.
CSV file syntax
In QuickStatements version 2, one can also cut and paste a properly structured CSV file as an alternative to the syntax introduced in QuickStatements version 1. The CSV file will specify commands to execute. The first row is a header describing how the columns are interpreted.
- Always the first column: the item or entity to edit. If left empty, a new item will be created. See item creation sample below.
The other columns may specify the following commands:
- A property ID (uppercase) begins a new statement. The column value specifies the main value of the statement, in QuickStatements version 1 syntax.
- A lowercase "qal" followed by a property number (without "P") adds a qualifier to the current statement. The column value specifies the value of the qualifier, in QuickStatements version 1 syntax. There must be some "P" column before a "qal" column to specify which statement the qualifier is added to.
- An uppercase "S" followed by a property number (without "P") begins a new source for the current statement. The column value specifies the value of the source, in QuickStatements version 1 syntax. There must be some "P" column before an "S" column to specify which statement the source is added to.
- A lowercase "s" followed by a property number (without "P") adds another property-value pair to the current source. The column value specifies the value of the source, in QuickStatements version 1 syntax. There must be some "S" column before an "s" column to specify which source the property-value pair is added to.
- An uppercase "L" followed by a language code sets the label in that language.
- An uppercase "D" followed by a language code sets the description in that language.
- An uppercase "A" followed by a language code adds an alias in that language.
- An uppercase "S" followed by a site ID adds a sitelink to that site.
- A number sign character sets the edit summary (comment) of the preceding command. The tool splits adding of a claim and its reference in two edits. A comment can be added to the edit summary of each of them. For the claim by putting a "#" column between the columns for the claim and its reference, for the reference by putting a "#" column behind its columns. For example:
qid,P21,#,S143,s813,# Q22124656,Q6581097,comment to claim adding edit,Q24731821,+2017-10-04T00:00:00Z/11,comment to reference adding edit
To create a new item, the first element of the row needs to be empty, so the line starts with a
- For example
qid,Len,Den,P31 ,Regina Phalange,fictional character,Q95074
- For example
creates a new item. Suitable for LibreOffice (paste in cell A1)
|Mona Lisa||oil painting by Leonardo da Vinci|
|Mona Lisa||oil painting by Leonardo da Vinci|
Statement removal commands
Statement column headers may also begin with "-" to remove the statement. (Note that this is only valid in the header for the whole column, not in individual values.) Removing other column types is not yet supported and will result in an error when the command is run; however, sitelinks and labels can be removed by setting them to the empty string (without "-" in the column header).
Adds to the sandbox item a P31 value of human (Q5) and then removes that same statement again.
Commas and double quotes
Labels, descriptions, aliases and sitelinks do not need to be in double quotes unless they themselves contain commas (,) or double quotes (").
In this case, replace all double quotes with two double quotes (e.g. Toys "R" Us → Toys ""R"" Us) and then wrap the string in a pair of double quotes (e.g. "Toys ""R"" Us").
Samples: Toys "R" Us and Patterns, Predictors, and Outcome
To add a string value containing double quotes ("), replace all double quotes with two double quotes ("").
As any string value, then wrap it in three double quotes ("""), e.g. """Toys ""R"" Us""".
Samples for Q4115189#P370, notably
Toys "R" Us
Samples by value type
Samples use the sandbox item (Q4115189) and can be pasted directly into QuickStatements for testing. Should be risk-free.
somevalue is for unknown value Help, novalue for no value Help. F1 and S1 on Lexeme:L123 would have to exist for it to work.
- String or external-id
- Monolingual text
en is for English
Precisions are 9=year, 10=month, 11=day, so the dates are 1856, January 1856 and 1 January 1856.
- Image/Commons media file
- File:Frans Breydel - A merry company.jpg
- File:'Girl Reading' by Mary Colman Wheeler, El Paso Museum of Art.JPG (includes a single quote and a comma)
- File:Kaubalaeva "E. Russ" vrakk.jpg (includes double quotes)
- File:''L'empereur Napoleon III'' de Franz-Xaver Winterhalter.jpg
U11573 is for metre (Q11573),
U11574 for second (Q11574). Note the odd result of
Full examples can be found at Help:QuickStatements/examples.
Using QuickStatements version 2
Here is how to use QuickStatements (version 2) in basic mode:
- Go to https://quickstatements.toolforge.org
- Make sure you are logged into OAuth and your name is visible in the upper-right corner. If not, then log in.
- Click "New batch".
- For working with Wikimedia Commons Structured Data:
- Look for the pull-down menu Create new command batch for ... and change project from Wikidata to Commons [Batch mode only!]
- You need "M" ids to work on instead of "Q" numbers. Look up the media identifiers for Commons files with the Minefield tool
- Use statements in the form of "MXXXX|PXX|QXXX" or use the CSV format option
- Initiate the query with the "Run" or "Run in the background" button to run it in the batch mode
- Cut and paste your commands. See the syntax in the section above.
- When you are done, click "Import V1 commands" or "Import CSV commands".
- The tool will convert your commands into human-readable form. Inspect them and click "Run" or "Run in the background" to execute
- As your commands are being processed, double-check the results, and press "STOP" if you detect a problem.
- The user interface will tell you when all commands have been processed.
Preparing commands in a spreadsheet
Cut-and-paste the cells directly into the QS import window
QS converted your commands into human-readable form and waits for approval
QS executing the commands. Please see "Stop" button.
QS completed the task.
Using QuickStatements version 1
QuickStatements version 1 is still available, but no longer maintained. It has stopped working for some users, but still works fine for others.
- Go to https://wikidata-todo.toolforge.org/quick_statements.php
- Cut and paste your commands into the window
- Click "Do it"
- The user interface will tell you when all statements have been processed.
Using QuickStatements version 2 in batch mode
|Warning: As of May 2020, duplicated items may be created in batch mode. Please make sure you can find and merge them! This does not affect frontend mode.|
When to use batch mode?
Batch mode (also known as running in the background or asynchronous batch mode) means your statements are executed from a Wikimedia server, rather than from your Web browser. This has several advantages:
- Even if you close your browser or if your computer crashes, the statements will be executed until the last one.
- You can launch several batches in parallel, without slowing down your computer. (The batches seem to be run sequentially)
- You get a unique URL for your batch, to which you can refer later. This page shows some statistics about your run.
- To see all your recent batches click "Your last batch". To see everybody else's recent batches click "Last batches"
- You or a project admin can stop your batch by going to its URL. For instance, if it is realized that the batch is erroneous and you are offline, an admin can stop it immediately (by going to the individual batch page), rather than having to block you.
- If you discover that something went wrong, you can revert the whole batch afterwards
But there are also drawbacks:
- It takes a few more clicks, so as a rule of thumb, if you only have 10 or fewer statements, it's better to run them in normal mode.
- Depending on how busy the server is it might take time for your batch to start so that checking the results might not be possible immediately.
- There is a limit on the number of statements in a batch, and batches with more statements do not load properly (showing blank page and revolving circle). For simpler statements, the maximum seems to be around 25 thousand statements per batch, but it is much smaller for more complex statements.
- Batch mode seems to work well for simple statements without qualifiers or references, but more complex statements (where, for example, the successful addition of a qualifier depends on the base statement being already present), there seems to be a much higher error rate.
Before running a batch, it can be a good idea to run a few commands directly in non-batch mode to get a good view of what is being done.
Using batch mode
- Prepare your statement normally as described in the Using QuickStatements version 2 section above
- Instead of pressing "Run", press the "Run in background" button.
- "Your last batches" will show a list of the most recent batches run by you, with statistics.
The following statistical values are available:
- DONE: The number of statements that were successfully run
- ERROR: The number of statements that failed
- INIT: The number of statements left to run
- RUN: The number of statements being run right now
Running QuickStatements by URL
An alternative way of communicating with QuickStatements is to use a URL instead of cutting and pasting commands into the import window. For example, a command to add to Emile Justin Merlot (Q37887397)VIAF ID (P214)"96480189" with source imported from Wikimedia project (P143)Wikimedia Commons (Q565) is Q37887397 TAB P214 TAB "96480189" TAB S143 TAB Q565. You can also generate a prefilled QuickStatements window with https://quickstatements.toolforge.org/#/v1= Q37887397%7CP214 %7C%2296480189%22%7C S143%7CQ565 or https://quickstatements.toolforge.org/#/v1=Q37887397%7CP214%7C%2296480189%22%7CS143%7CQ565. The steps of converting V1 syntax to URL are:
- replace TAB with "|" and newline with "||"
- apply URL encoding to the string, which will replace "|" with "%7C", double quote with "%22", space with "%20", slash "/" with "%2F", etc.
- put https://quickstatements.toolforge.org/#/v1= in front of it
Many templates on Commons, like c:Template:Creator or c:Template:Artwork use that technique to package information that can be imported to Wikidata into a clickable URL.
[[File:Commons to Wikidata QuickStatements.svg|20px|link=https://quickstatements.toolforge.org/#/v1=Q37887397%7CP214%7C%2296480189%22%7CS143%7CQ565]]will encode the URL within a handy clickable icon: (click it but do not click "run"; pressing it will not work since that item already has that property).
- Pages with QuickStatements URLs may be located through Special:LinkSearch (see here) or through a database query calling externallinks table (see for example here).
QuickStatements version 2 currently cannot:
- create multiple items that are linked to each other
- set ranks for statements
- set comments when removing statements
- specify calendar for a date statement
- specify precision or globe for a location statement
- add statements to redirected items
- add a second statement with the same property and value but with different qualifiers, since additional qualifiers will be added to the first statement
- remove a qualifier without removing the statement itself
- remove a reference without removing the statement itself
- remove an alias
- update badges
- create lexemes
Note that for using QuickStatements, an account needs to be autoconfirmed. Also there is no way for users using bot accounts to mark their edits as bot edit (but there is an open ticket to address that).
- Can QuickStatements add reference statements with more than one claim?
- Yes, current QuickStatements can add references that have for example both imported from Wikimedia project (P143) and retrieved (P813) (see here) or both stated in (P248) and page(s) (P304).
- How do I experiment with QuickStatements?
- Use Wikidata Sandbox (Q4115189).
- How do I report issues with the tool?
- Check with other users at the talk page or at Wikidata:Project chat. Confirmed bugs should be reported on Phabricator after reading mw:How to report a bug.
- Where do I suggest new features?
- You can ask at tool's Git page or at User:Magnus Manske/quick statements2, but be aware that we keep Magnus busy!
- What is the maximum number of commands I can enter at once?
- Not documented. It was already tested with over 11,000 commands. But note that such large batch runs will take several hours to complete.
- QuickStatements allows edits ranging from single statement to multi-thousand-item batch runs. Very large runs or potentially-controversial runs should go through the approval process described in Wikidata:Bots.
- Users should avoid creating duplicate items.
- All statements should have references as per Help:Sources. That might be less important for identifiers, like VIAF ID (P214) or RKDartists ID (P650), etc.
- Users doing the edits are responsible for fixing or undoing their changes if issues are found. See about statement removal.
- This tool does not properly honor maxlag. This is generally not a problem, because the actions of the tool are limited by the usual edit limits of the controlling user. This can, however, cause problems if the controlling user is not subject to edit limits (e.g. admins).
Using the API to start batches
If you are logged in on QuickStatements, you can get a token on your user page. That page also contains information about how to use the token to submit batches programmatically. You need to have submitted at least one server-side batch manually before for this to work!
QuickStatements V2 creates edit groups for all individual batches. You may discuss individual edit groups, or rollback the whole edit group.
EditGroups is another external tool, not part of QuickStatements. Currently it works on Wikidata, and there is also an instance for Commons. On other Wikibase instances, it may be unavailable.
- YouTube instructions
- CSV to quick_statements tool converts a properly formatted CSV file into a series of QuickStatements commands.
- Zotero export translator to QuickStatements format in zotkat: allows the collection of references in Zotero, which can then be exported to QuickStatements for uploading to Wikidata
- Instructions on how to install QuickStatements as part of Wikibase suite
- ↑ https://wikidata-todo.toolforge.org/quick_statements.php
- ↑ 2.0 2.1 2.2 2.3 2.4 2.5 2.6 2.7 syntax works only in QuickStatements version 2
- ↑ Note that due to the way computers operate with floating-point numbers the input format of version 2 may produce undesired results when working with decimal numbers.
- ↑ https://www.url-encode-decode.com/ is a handy URL encoder/decoder