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Is there any way to find when a specific word or phrase was added to a Wikipedia page? I want to find a way to determine the first revision that contains a match.

For example, the first occurrence of <ref>webapps.stackexchange.com</ref> in a page's revision history.

Manually searching through a page's revision history would be extremely time-consuming so I'm looking for an automated solution.

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2 Answers 2

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WikiBlame

WikiBlame is an online PHP-based tool that does exactly that, allowing you to find when a specific word or phrase was added to a Wikipedia page.

In the search options, you specify a Wikipedia page by name or URL as well as the text you want to find, and it will return the revision(s) where the text was added. WikiBlame includes many additional search parameters, and also supports searching other projects such as Wikisource, Wikimedia, and Wikidata.

WikiBlame's Search Interface
WikiBlame's Search GUI

Wikipedia Pages Link to WikiBlame

Wikipedia pages include a direct pre-populated link on their Revision history tab that includes the referring Wikipedia page's name and language. On English pages, the link is found under External tools: Find addition/removal. Wikipedia pages in other languages have a translated variation. For example,

WikiBlame links on Wikipedia's 'Revision history' pages [en, fr, es, zh]
Slide show alternating between English, Spanish, French and Chinese versions of a page with an arrow pointing to each language's link

Additional Resources

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  • I don't have it on the English Wikipedia :(. Commented Dec 14, 2023 at 20:03
  • @КоеКто see the updated answer with notes on how to find it. Please flag my comment as "no longer needed once you've seen it."
    – Blindspots
    Commented Jan 2 at 20:13
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    @Blindspots I can find External Tool section only on page's Page Information special page. Commented Mar 18 at 11:07
  • @КоеКто you are correct when viewing the mobile version of Wikipedia (even when viewed in Desktop mode). Good catch! If you view the normal version of Wikipedia (https://en.wikipedia.org instead of https://en.m.wikipedia.org) it matches the answer. I'll try to add this info into the answer when I have time to improve it if someone else doesn't get to it first. Appreciate you following up as I wasn't aware and other people might also get confused. 👍
    – Blindspots
    Commented Mar 18 at 13:16
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Wikimedia provides an XML dump of the complete revision history for all Wikipedia articles. This dataset contains a version of that data from April, 2010. This dataset does not contain the full text of the revisions, but rather just the meta information about the revisions, including things like language, timestamp, article and the like.

On every page, in the top-right corner there is a History button that takes you to the revision history for that page.

enter image description here

Source: Wikipedia Revision History

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