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A stub is an article containing only one or a few sentences of text that, although providing some useful information, is too short to provide encyclopedic coverage of a subject, and that is capable of expansion. Non-article pages, such as disambiguation pages, lists, categories, templates, talk pages, and redirects, are not regarded as stubs. If a stub has little verifiable information, or if its subject has no apparent notability, it may be deleted or be merged into another relevant article. While a "definition" may be enough to qualify an article as a stub, Wikipedia is not a dictionary. The distinction between dictionary and encyclopedia articles is best expressed by the use–mention distinction:

  • A dictionary article is about a word or phrase and will often have several different definitions for it
  • An encyclopedia article is about the subject denoted by the title but usually has only one definition (or in some cases, several definitions that are largely the same) but there may be several equivalent words (synonyms) or phrases for it.

Sizable articles are usually not considered stubs, even if they have significant problems or are noticeably incomplete. With these larger articles, a cleanup template is usually added instead of a stub template.