The specific paper I'm interested in is Galton (1907), and one approach I worked out is to go to Galton's Google Scholar profile and then click on the paper in question, after which I can see the following histogram:

Galton (1907) citations 2005-2019

This is the kind of thing I want to create, but one problem is that it cuts off in 2005.

If I click on the article itself and look within citing articles I can see there are several citations before 2005, but it wasn't apparent to me that there was a way to count them without manually going through each page.

Is there a way for me to obtain data for the number of citations by year (including pre-2005) without manually going through the citing articles?

Galton, F. (1907). Vox populi. Nature, 75(7), 450-451.

  • 1
    So is it a problem with the data or graphing it?
    – Solar Mike
    Commented Jan 6, 2019 at 6:39
  • Data. (He said, he lacks the cite count pre 2005.)
    – guest
    Commented Jan 14, 2019 at 15:49

3 Answers 3


If you have access to Scopus (Web of Science also works, I presume) you can show the publications citing this paper in search format. Using the filters on that search page, you can retrieve the data you're looking for quite easily (year filter > show more > show all). In this case, that shows the following: Scopus-citations of Galton (1907)

Problem with this, of course, is that Scopus only shows the citations it has in its database (410 documents).


You can use the "custom range" setting (left side of Google Scholar) to get specific ranges, but I would be wary of that.

A. I only see one between 1900 and 1960, which seems very low. So I suspect the database is flawed.

B. Also, I get different numbers of citations when I sort Google Scholar results by date or by relevance. Should be same number of papers but in a different order. But for some reason it is not. So I am just wary.

Other ideas (weak ones).

A. Talk to a research librarian at a major university. Ideally this community should be able to answer also. And I feel bad sending you elsewhere. But maybe...

B. Perhaps some search in math or statistical abstracts?

P.s. Just a caveat on the study you are doing. Be careful about conclusions that the paper got more interest lately. It may have. But you should also consider to normalize (e.g. by overall growth in number of statistics papers). After all the whole literature got bigger.


Wikidata records Vox Populi at https://www.wikidata.org/wiki/Q56873889 as well as a few of its citations. With the Wikidata Query Service at https://query.wikidata.org/ you can formulate SPARQL queries that will plot the citation distribution per year. In Scholia, we do this automatically and a citation distribution per year for Vox Populi is available at https://tools.wmflabs.org/scholia/work/Q56873889 (see the bottom of the page). Note that the citation information for the paper in Wikidata is certainly not complete. Currently, I see only 80 citations, while I see a count of 927 in Google Scholar.

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