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Sweden Project - Swedish Profile Standards

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This page is intended as a guide for Wikitree members working on Swedish profiles. Any questions not answered by this page can be asked in the on G2G forum add the tag Nordic and/or Sweden. If you are a member of Nordic Project you can also ask questions in the WikiTree Nordic Google Group.

The Sweden Project aims to make all Swedish profiles at WikiTree the very best they can be. That includes;

  • adding correct info to the data fields for names and locations
  • well sourced biographies
  • appropriate categories and templates
  • research notes (if required)
  • images and/or photos (if any can be found)

We hope this document will help all who want to work on Swedish profiles.


Swedish Profile Standards

Each WikiTree profile consists of two main parts; Data Fields (name, dates, locations for example) and an "Edit Box" for the biography part. The Edit Box is also where you can add categories, templates, biography text, headings, and of course, your sources.

(If you are new to WikiTree you might want to start checking out the info in this category: Category: New Member How-To)

Data Fields

This is to give an overview of the data field section of a profile (name, dates, locations for example) and to give some general advice.

It is never appropriate to use ALL CAPS in any data field so please don’t do that.

For specific info on what should go into each field, please check info on Space:Sweden Project - Name and Location Fields

Name fields

WikiTree says "use their conventions, not ours", meaning that the info should be added as per the custom of the profile person, in that specific time period.

  • When creating a profile, names should be spelled correctly in the native language of the person/profile to avoid duplicates (spellings using Å, å, Ä, ä, Ö, ö for example).
  • All given names should be entered in the Proper First Name field in the same order listed in the birth notice/document.
  • If you do not know which name is the preferred "call name" all given names at birth should be added to the "Preferred Name" field as well.
  • Do not use the Nickname field for descriptive placeholders (such as an occupation or location) unless that person would have been well known by such a description and it is documented in a source.
  • Do not assume that a Swedish married woman took her husband's surname when married. Until the 1900s the tradition for the woman was to keep the name she was born with.
  • A patronymic name would in Sweden be considered to be a last name and should not be added as middle name for "ordinary people". (Separate rules may adhere to royals and nobles.)

Related help page(s): Space:Swedish_names, Space:Sweden Project - Name and Location Fields

Prefix field

The prefix field should not be used on Swedish profiles at all (that means profiles that were born and died in Sweden).

If a person was not born in Sweden, and a prefix was used in another country before immigrating to Sweden, then a prefix in another language could be OK to use (it would have to be in agreement with any guidelines of the other country).

Related Help Page(s): Help:Name_Fields#Prefix

Suffix field

The suffix field should not be used on Swedish profiles at all (profiles that were born and died in Sweden). The abbreviations for "d.y." and "d.ä." should be spelled out in full, "den yngre" (the younger) and "den äldre" (the older) in the nickname field instead.

If a suffix was used in another country after emigrating from Sweden a suffix in another language could be OK to use (it would have to be in agreement with any guidelines of the new country).

Related Help Page(s): Help:Name_Fields#Suffix

Date fields

Dates should be as precise as possible. If you are unable to confirm an exact date then use an estimate and add an explanation in the biography (under the Research Notes heading). Also, add the template for estimated date {{Estimated Date}}}

In Sweden, the current standard format for dates is year-month-day and dates can be added as such in the date fields (WT then “translates” 1691-12-26 into 26 Dec 1691).

Related help pages: Help:Date_Fields, Help:Estimated Dates

Location fields

The locations fields should preferably not be left empty. If you are adding a profile without even knowing the place for birth or death, is it really necessary to add such a profile? Could the info you have temporarily be added to a family member until you have done more research?

  • Places of birth and death should be entered to the location data fields in the order of the smallest geographical unit to largest. Examples;
    • Village/by, parish/socken, county/län, country/land
    • Village/by, parish/socken, province/landskap, country/land
    • Parish/församling, town/city/stad, county/län, country/land
      • Real location examples:
        • Lännäs, Närke, Sverige (parish/socken, province/landskap, country/land)
        • Lännäs, Örebro län, Sverige (parish/socken, county/län, country/land)
        • Lännäs, Örebro län (T), Sverige (parish/socken, county/län, country/land)
        • Örebro Nikolai, Örebro, Örebro län, Sverige (parish/församling, town/city/stad, county/län, country/land)
  • Always include the name of parish/socken/församling if it is known.
  • Always include the word "län" if you are referring to the county/län, many provinces/landskap and counties/län share the same name but not necessarily cover the same area.
  • Spellings of the Swedish län, should you add an "s" at the end or not? There should be a "s" at the end of a county name for most counties, the exceptions are Blekinge, Kalmar, Uppsala and Örebro where you do not add it. Another special case is "Göteborgs och Bohus län" where the "s" hangs on to Göteborg. See also: Sweden Project - Correct Location Names
  • Please do not abbreviate the county/län name in the location fields. The county letter within parenthesis can be added to the location field to complement but should not replace the county name. Correct example: Grinstad, Älvsborgs län (P), Sverige
  • Swedish profiles should have either Sverige or Sweden as the country (where appropriate) in the birth, marriage and death locations. The country Sweden written in any other language will generate a DBE error.
  • Please remember that an estimated location is better than no location at all (you can use the “Unsure” radio button). Even a continent is by WikiTree considered better than nothing Help:Uncertain_Locations#Even_a_continent_is_better_than_nothing.
  • If you select "Swedish" in the Language data field (between Suffix and Birth Date), the automated place name suggestion from FamilySearch will appear in Swedish (if not chosen, it will default to your native language). Please note that the automated place names suggested from Family Search are not always correct.

Related help page(s): Space:Sweden Project - Name and Location Fields, Space:Sweden_Project_-_Correct_Location_Names, Help:Location_Fields

Radio Buttons

At the end of almost all data fields are some radio buttons. It is preferred that they should be used on all profiles.

  • For the name fields, there are just two, certain or uncertain. Please check the certain button if you have provided a source for the name, otherwise, the uncertain button should be used.
  • Please use the radio button for No middle name if a person was both born and died in Sweden. Generally speaking, middle names are not used in Sweden at all until modern days and all given names at birth should be added to the Proper First Name field. If you find an exception from the general rule, be sure to add a source and, if needed, an explanation under Research Notes.
  • For date fields there are more choices. Please only use the "certain/exact" button if a reliable source has been provided that supports a specific date.
    • The "before this date" and "after this date" buttons can be used when you need to estimate a date.
      • For example, you have found a marriage date in 1760 but no info on a birth year. Depending on customs, let's say someone would have been at least 17 years old before marriage, then the estimated date for birth would be 1743 and you would use the "before this date" button.
      • If it is the death year that is missing, they married in 1760, you would add 1760 to the data field and use "after this date" button. In both cases, you should also add the template for {{Estimated Date|Birth}}} or {{Estimated Date|Death}}} and an explanation for your reasoning under the "Research Notes" heading.
  • For the location fields used for birth and death, you usually use certain or uncertain. Please check the certain button if you have provided a source for the location, otherwise, the uncertain button should be used.
  • For living persons, who are well known to you (siblings, children), exceptions can be made. Please use the "certain/exact" button if you witnessed an event, or you could also choose to use the option "blank for extra privacy" in order for the information not to show.

Related help page(s): Space:Sweden_Project_-_Name_and_Location_Fields, Help:Uncertain, Help:Date Fields#Date Status Options, Help:Estimated Dates

Biography "Edit Text Box"

The portion of the profile where the biography text is added is also where you can add categories and templates. The different parts of this section (biography, research notes, sources) should be separated by different headings.


Location categories are by far the most used categories on Swedish profiles. They can be added for place of birth, marriage, death and for a location the person lived in for a long time. In Sweden, the parishes are the most common location categories

Sweden Project has had the migration category structure approved and many categories have been set up already. There are also categories grouping cemeteries, genealogy resource pages, maintenance categories, and more.

  • A location category should be added to a profile once a source has been found to confirm the location. An exception from this is the Unknown Location category.
  • If a sourced location does not yet have a category, ask the Nordic Categories Team for help. They will find out if there possibly is a category with another spelling or help you create a new one.

For more info on Swedish categories, see Space:Sweden Project - Category Instructions

Templates and Stickers

Both templates and stickers are usually surrounded by {{ }}

Please check Space:Swedish_Templates where you can find more info on the templates and stickers used on Swedish profiles and where they should be added to someone's profile. If you think any sticker is missing from the list, please post a comment on that page and let us know.

Related help page(s): Help:Stickers, Help:Templates

Images / Photos

Several images can be added to a person's profile. They could be photographs, or scanned documents relating to the person (for example a birth or death certificate), or perhaps a letter that was written by the person. If you want an image included in the biography text it can be done by adding a template (see the help pages below).

  • Images should of course be relevant to the person being profiled. A portrait (head) of the person is preferred as the primary image.
  • Images must not infringe on copyright. If you add an online image, always add where the image came from (URL) and state what kind of permission to use it is given (Creative Commons License for example)
  • If you have a photograph of an ancestor from a private IRL collection or perhaps taken by yourself, you can add that to the image info. If you consider it free to use by other relatives who find it online you can mention that as well.
  • If you know the date of an image (what year a photograph was taken, what year a painting was painted) please add that to the image info.
  • Make sure the title of an image is relevant, do not just use “Image 1,” “Image 2,” etc. Examples:
  • Be sparing with background images on profiles, especially those not gentle on the eyes.

Related help page(s): Help:Photos_FAQ, Template:Image, Nordic Project, Image resources online


Two “main headings” are required on a profile: Biography and Sources. The Research Notes heading is also one of the “main headings,” but it is added only when needed. These main headings always have two = on either side of the heading text, for example == Biography == and == Biografi ==

  • You can also use subheadings as waymarkers for important events (add one more = on either side of the heading text to make a sub-heading).
  • Biographies can also be written in multiple languages, preferably starting with the native language of the person/profile. When multiple languages are used, feel free to translate biography and research notes headings, but please leave the sources heading in English. Examples; Astrid Lindgren
  • If the person/profile lived and died in Sweden and you are only writing the biography in Swedish you can use the Swedish language instead of English in all the headings. These are the agreed translations to use:
    • Biography - Biografi
    • Research Notes - Forskningsanteckningar
    • Sources - Källor (please note that <references /> must still be added on the row below this heading

Related pages: Help:Biographies#Text_Sections, Space:Nordic_Project_-_BioCheck_App_Translations

Biography section
  • The biography text should be relevant to the profile, preferably using inline sourcing to clearly identify the facts presented (see sources section below), written in the third person, and using the past tense.
  • Preferably, the biography should be written in chronological order.
  • Do not add speculation or your own personal views to the Biography. These can be added in the Research Notes section.
  • You can add a bit of interest to the narrative by either adding first-hand contemporary descriptions of actions or attributes or sourced ones (example: description in a draft registration), but do not speculate or embellish.
  • If a long descriptive text is required (examples: transcript of a will or a letter), it would be preferred if such a text is added to a free-space page and then linked to in the biography (with a brief summary in bio).
  • Biography text/info should never be copied straight off any other website (or another medium for that matter). If biography writing is not your strong suit, ask another Nordic Project member for help or add the maintenance category Category:Sweden, Needs Biography.
  • Smaller amount of text (a couple of sentences, a paragraph) can be cited from another place online like Wikipedia. It should in these cases be clear that you are citing text and where from. Example profile needed:
  • Biographies can be written in multiple languages (see headings section below), suggesting starting with the native language of the profile.

Related help page(s): Help:Biographies, Help:Editing_Tips, Help:Bio_Ideas, Help:Copying_Text, Help:Copying_from_Wikipedia

Research Notes

A Research Note section is a tool to be used to explain issues encountered in the research process. For example, this could include conflicting information, erroneous information published elsewhere, and to document where information has been searched for but not found.

  • Detaching relationships between profiles are definitely something that should always be explained, and signed, in a research note.
  • When using the {{Estimated Date}} template, please explain your reasoning as a research note.
  • You can sign and date any research notes with four tildes ~~~~ so that others can easily see who added the notes and when.

Related help page(s): Help:Research_Notes


Sourcing is important in order to establish family connections and to "prove" (or disprove) family lineages. Therefore, it is also important to record where the information came from and evaluate the certainty of any source. It is just as important to add a source in a way that others can actually find it, please check Sweden Project - Source Citation Format page for good examples.

  • Primary sources are written at the time of the event or period. Swedish church books are considered primary sources and are the preferred sources to use on ALL Swedish profiles. Even if these sources are generally reliable, there may be errors. You still need to evaluate the information contained in them, especially if one source should contradict another.
  • Secondary sources are written after the event or period has passed. Their trustworthiness should be evaluated before being used as a reliable source on a profile. They can also be added under the “See also:” section of the profile.
  • Online family trees are not considered reliable sources. If you have found a sourced online tree, investigate the sources and then add those to the profile instead of the family tree. Links to an online family tree can be placed in the “See also:” section of the profile, especially if no other sources have been added to the profile (that will give a researcher a point to start from).
  • Citations (inline references/citations/footnotes) and Sources should be formatted according to Wikitree guidelines. Inline citations are preferred.
  • Please include what kind of source is used if it is anything else than a church record, if you have used a book, magazine, newspaper, or any other kind of media, please add that to the source. Examples:
    • "CD: Sveriges Dödbok 7, published by Sveriges Släktforskarförbund (The Federation of Swedish Genealogical Societies). ISBN: 978-91-88341-32-7"
    • "Newspaper: Helsingborgs Tidning N:o 66 from June 3, 1880" (preferrably also add a link to where it can be found).

Related help page(s): Space:Sweden_Project_Reliable_Sources, Help:Sources Style Guide, Space:Sweden_Project_-_Source_Citation_Format, Help:Sources, Help:Sources#Inline citations

See Also: section

Below the <references /> tag you can use a 'See Also' section for Wikipedia links and other related info relevant to the profile, such as works consulted.

An online family tree can also be placed in the “See also:” section of the profile, especially if no other sources have been added to the profile (that will give a researcher a point to start from).

Acknowledgement heading

The acknowledgment heading is not a required heading and if the person who added a profile has not added any bio and/or sources it can be removed.

However, any gedcom file name should be left since there is a project working on profiles added by specific gedcoms in the early days of WT. Example: Olof Unknown

Related help page(s): Help:Acknowledgements


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