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PQ Style Sheet

Guidelines for Contributors

PQ follows the Chicago Manual of Style, 16th ed. (2010), with exceptions as noted below, and asks that bibliographic citations appear in endnotes rather than as a list of works cited. The sixteenth edition of CMS is available online to subscribers at and also in print form.

  1. Spelling should follow American conventions except in quotations, which reproduce the original spelling. PQ uses the Merriam-Webster Dictionary as our authority (available online at, checking spelling and hyphenation against it. In quotations from sixteenth- and seventeenth-century texts, we normalize u and i to v and j where appropriate.
  2. Numbers one through ninety-nine are spelled out in the text except in dates, page numbers, line numbers, and as percentages. Roman numerals should be converted to Arabic. Dates should appear in European style: 25 December 1965. Numbers that identify centuries are also spelled out ("eighteenth century"). Em dashes should appear as -- or -, and without a space between the characters preceding or following it; en dashes serve to connect inclusive numbers (1685-1750). Use lower case and Arabic numerals to refer to sections of a work, even if the original text uses upper case or Roman numerals ("book 2," "chapter 5," "part 3," etc.), and don't superscript ordinal numbers in abbreviations such as "2nd ed."
  3. Citations give inclusive page numbers as follows: 1-99 use all digits; 100 or multiples use all digits (100-104, 1100-1113); 101 through 109, 201 through 209, etc., uses a single digit in the second place (501-8); 110 through 199, etc., use two or more digits as required (322-26, 498-532, 1085-89).
  4. Ellipsis should not ordinarily be placed at the beginning or end of quotations, but when needed is indicated by three spaced periods (without square brackets), or by four periods, if it falls at the end of a sentence within the quotation. Quotations of more than eight lines of type are set off from the text. Parenthetic citations of poetry following a block quotation drop to the line below the final line of the quotation.
  5. Line breaks in poetry are indicated by a forward slash with spaces on both sides (e.g., "a red wheel / barrow"). Short quotations should be placed in double quotation marks and followed by an endnote or by parenthetic citation if several follow in a row. Avoid whenever possible the use of square brackets in quotations, including the MLA-style practice of placing altered upper-case letters between brackets, or re-writing verb tenses to fit the grammar of the prose surrounding the quotation. Multiple citations of primary texts (more than six or seven references) should appear parenthetically once the source has been noted (with a comment about subsequent references). Make an effort to reduce a large number of successive notes that refer to a range of pages within a single book, but also avoid stranding parenthetic numbers with no clear reference. In endnotes and parenthetic citations, add a short title to the author's name and page reference when referring back to a text mentioned earlier.
  6. Whenever possible endnote citations should place author and title before any quoted material, not parenthetically after it.
  7. Place periods, commas, colons, and semicolons in italics if the immediately preceding word is in italics.
  8. Works divided into sections should be indicated by separating the elements with periods: Macbeth 1.1.1-10 refers to Act I, scene 1, lines 1-10 of the play; Faerie Queene 1.1.1-10 would refer to book I, canto 1, stanzas 1-10 of Spenser's poem. In certain cases it might be necessary to use abbreviations for clarity, "chap." for "chapter," "n" or "nn" for notes, "pt." for part, and so forth. Verso and recto, when they appear, are in lower case, not superscript. For poetry, use line numbers, not page numbers. Because access to EEBO and other digitization projects is far from universal, especially outside of the US, avoid using page numbers for plays and poems cited in early editions.
  9. Avoid whenever possible idem, passim, op. cit., and loc. cit.; f and ff should also be avoided. Roman (not italicized) ibid. and cf. can be used sparingly. Never use cross references.
  10. Canonical poems and plays can be cited in endnotes with publication data omitted: e.g., Chaucer, "Wife of Bath's Prologue," Canterbury Tales, lines 105-14 (fragment number omitted); Milton, Paradise Lost, 1.1-10. The abbreviations l. (line) and ll. (lines) are avoided, and "lines" omitted where the reference unambiguously is to lines.
  11. In PQ's house style we omit the place of publication for well-known university presses, and we also abbreviate "University" as "U." For example, "(Cambridge, Mass.: Harvard University Press, 1999), 77" should appear as "(Harvard U. Press, 1999), 77." Provide foreign places of publication in English (Munich, not München), and if the location of an American city needs clarification (Venice, CA) specify the state's name by using U.S. postal abbreviations. Usually, supplying a single place of publication will suffice ("London," e.g., rather than "London and New York").
  12. Please do not in a first reference to an article or chapter give inclusive page numbers followed by a more specific page reference.
  13. Titles within italicized titles appear between double quotation marks. Double quotation marks replace chevrons in quotations of foreign languages, which generally follow the original punctuation while adapting some conventions to English-language rules. Italics are used contrastively, with entire passages of italics set in roman and romanized words in italics.
  14. Do not supply the issue number of a journal article unless the publication paginates each issue separately, e.g., Melvyn New, "Taking Care: A Slightly Levinasian Reading of Dombey and Son," PQ 84 (2005): 80. Note too that we abbreviate the following journal titles: ELH, ELR, JEGP, JHI, MLQ, MP, N&Q, PMLA, PQ, RES, SAQ, SEL, SP, TLS.
  15. Possessives of proper names ending in an eez sound add apostrophe-s (Xerxes's armies). The plural of a quoted word or phrase is formed without an apostrophe ("To be continueds").
  16. URLs are formed beginning with the protocol (http or ftp) and often end with a trailing slash (/). Do not include angle and square brackets, or other wrappers, and do not supply access dates. See CMS 8.186 for citation conventions: e.g., websites mentioned in text or notes are normally set in roman: the Internet Movie Database (IMDb), but The Chicago Manual of Style Online.
  17. Our printer can typeset most glyphs and diacritics, but we do not ordinarily set extended passages in Greek or Hebrew.
  18. Institutional affiliations appear italicized between the body of the text and the endnotes.