WIT : Wikipedia-based Image Text Dataset

Wikipedia-based Image Text (WIT) Dataset is a large multimodal multilingual dataset. WIT is composed of a curated set of 37.6 million entity rich image-text examples with 11.5 million unique images across 108 Wikipedia languages. Its size enables WIT to be used as a pretraining dataset for multimodal machine learning models.

Key Advantages

A few unique advantages of WIT:

  • The largest multimodal dataset (publicly available at the time of this writing) by the number of image-text examples.
  • A massively multilingual dataset (first of its kind) with coverage for over 100+ languages.
  • A collection of diverse set of concepts and real world entities.
  • Brings forth challenging real-world test sets.

You can learn more about WIT Dataset from our arXiv paper.

Latest Updates

2021-04-14: Happy to share the good news that our paper got accepted at SIGIR Conference. From ACM site, you can find our paper, slides and presentation.

2021-09-14: WIT Image-Text Competition is live on Kaggle. Our collaborators from Wikimedia Research blogged about this and they have made available the raw pixels and resnet50 embeddings for the images in this set.

WIT Example

Wikipedia Page

For example, let’s take the Wikipedia page for Half Dome, Yosemite in CA.

WIT Wikipedia Half Dome Image

From the Wikipedia page for Half Dome : Photo by DAVID ILIFF. License: CC BY-SA 3.0

Wikipedia Page with Annotations of what we can extract

From this page, we highlight the various key pieces of data that we can extract – images, their respective text snippets and some contextual metadata.

WIT Half Dome Page with Annotations

By extracting and filering these carefully, we get a clean high quality image-text example that can be used in multimodal modeling.


Multimodal visio-linguistic models rely on a rich dataset to help them learn to model the relationship between images and texts. Having large image-text datasets can significantly improve performance, as shown by recent works. Furthermore the lack of language coverage in existing datasets (which are mostly only in English) also impedes research in the multilingual multimodal space – we consider this a lost opportunity given the potential shown in leveraging images (as a language-agnostic medium) to help improve our multilingual textual understanding.

To address these challenges and advance research on multilingual, multimodal learning we created the Wikipedia-based Image Text (WIT) Dataset. WIT is created by extracting multiple different texts associated with an image (e.g., as shown in the above image) from Wikipedia articles and Wikimedia image links. This was accompanied by rigorous filtering to only retain high quality image-text sets.

The resulting dataset contains over 37.6 million image-text sets – making WIT the largest multimodal dataset (publicly available at the time of this writing) with unparalleled multilingual coverage – with 12K+ examples in each of 108 languages (53 languages have 100K+ image-text pairs).

WIT: Dataset Numbers

Type Train Val Test Total / Unique
Rows / Tuples 37.13M 261.8K 210.7K 37.6M
Unique Images 11.4M 58K 57K 11.5M
Ref. Text 16.9M 150K 104K 17.2M / 16.7M
Attr. Text 34.8M 193K 200K 35.2M / 10.9M
Alt Text 5.3M 29K 29K 5.4M / 5.3M
Context Texts 119.8M

WIT: Image-Text Stats by Language

Image-Text # Lang Uniq. Images # Lang
total > 1M 9 images > 1M 6
total > 500K 10 images > 500K 12
total > 100K 36 images > 100K 35
total > 50K 15 images > 50K 17
total > 14K 38 images > 13K 38


We believe that such a powerful diverse dataset will aid researchers in building better multimodal multilingual models and in identifying better learning and representation techniques leading to improvement of Machine Learning models in real-world tasks over visio-linguistic data.

WIT Dataset is now available for download. Please check the data page.

Citing WIT

If you use the WIT dataset, you can cite our work as follows.

  title={WIT: Wikipedia-based Image Text Dataset for Multimodal Multilingual Machine Learning},
  author={Srinivasan, Krishna and Raman, Karthik and Chen, Jiecao and Bendersky, Michael and Najork, Marc},
  journal={arXiv preprint arXiv:2103.01913},


This data is available under the Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike 3.0 Unported license.

Projects using WIT

For information regarding MURAL (Multimodal, Multitask Retrieval Across Languages) paper accepted at EMNLP 2021.


For any questions, please contact [email protected].

If WIT dataset is useful to you, please do write to us about it. Be it a blog post, a research project or a paper, we are delighted to learn about it.


GitHub - google-research-datasets/wit: WIT (Wikipedia-based Image Text) Dataset is a large multimodal multilingual dataset comprising 37M+ image-text sets with 11M+ unique images across 100+ languages.
WIT (Wikipedia-based Image Text) Dataset is a large multimodal multilingual dataset comprising 37M+ image-text sets with 11M+ unique images across 100+ languages. - GitHub - google-research-dataset...