The MHRA Style Guide is an essential reference for scholars, students and editors in the Modern Humanities. Originally codified for our own use, MHRA style has since 1971 been used much more widely, and today many universities require dissertations to follow it.
The Guide. The complete text of the Style Guide is presented free online from the contents page below: or, for an overview, we also offer the Quick Guide online. The full Guide can also be bought as an inexpensive paperback, or downloaded free as a PDF. This text nevertheless remains subject to copyright, and should not be reproduced without permission.
Citation examples. MHRA styled citations are used throughout the MHRA's online catalogue, with links to explanations. Here are: a typical monograph, a typical collected volume, a special number of a journal cited as a book, and a typical translation; and here are: an article in a journal, a chapter in an edited book, an article in a special number of a journal, and an article in an electronic journal.
Suggestions. The Guide aims to be stable, but minor revisions are periodically made by a committee under the chair of Professor Chloe Paver. Suggestions may be sent to: firstname.lastname@example.org. The MHRA regrets that it is unable to enter into private correspondence about questions of style.
MHRA is a numeric referencing style published by the Modern Humanities Research Association.
Whenever you refer to another person’s words or ideas in your work, you need to insert a footnote number in your text. For example:
Giroux sums up how Disney transforms every child into a lifetime consumer of Disney products and ideas.1
When you refer to the publication for the first time, use full bibliographic details in the footnote.
Henry Giroux, The Mouse that Roared: Disney and the end of Innocence (Maryland: Rowland & Littlefield Publishers, 1999), p. 25.
*Note that the first name appears before the surname here!
When you refer to the same book later on, you can provide the information in a shortened form:
*Giroux, Mouse that Roared, p. 25.
*Just the surname here!
You can download the latest edition of the Style Guide (3) free of charge from the MHRA website which includes a Quick Guide to the main features of the MHRA style.
The following are some examples of how different items are referenced:
First name and surname of author, title of book (italicised, all important words capitalised) (place of publication: publisher, year of publication), page numbers (p. for one page, pp. for more than one page).
Tom McArthur, Worlds of Reference: Lexicography, Learning and Language from the Clay Tablet to the Computer (Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 1986), p. 59.
Chapter from a book
First name and surname of author(s), title of chapter in single quotation marks, in title of book (italicised, all important words capitalised), ed. by first name and surname of authors(s) (place of publication: publisher, year of publication), page numbers (p. for one page, pp. for more than one page).
Martin Elsky, ‘Words, Things, and Names: Jonson’s Poetry and Philosophical Grammar’, in Classic and Cavalier: Essays on Jonsonand the Sons of Ben, ed. by Claude J. Summers and Ted-Larry Pebworth (Pittsburgh: University of Pittsburgh Press, 1982), pp. 31–55 (p. 41).
First name and surname of author, title of article in single quotation marks, title of journal (italicised), volume number (date of publication), page numbers of article (with specific page reference).
Richard Hillyer, ‘In More than Name Only: Jonson’s “To Sir Horace Vere”’, Modern Language Review, 85 (1990), 1–11 (p. 8).
Publication/name of author, title of article in single quotation marks, year published or last updated <URL> [date accessed].
The Economist, 'The Digital Degree', 2014 <http://www.economist.com/news/briefing/21605899-staid-higher-education-business-about-experience-welcome-earthquake-digital> [accessed 28 July 2014].
The MHRA Style Guide does not contain an example of how to reference a lecture. The example below is based on the MHRA guidelines.
Lecture on QMplus
First name and surname of lecturer, title of lecture in single quotation marks, module code: module title (italicised). Year. Available at: URL of VLE [date accessed].
Stephen Henneberg, ‘Marketing Activities’, BUSM094: Introduction to Marketing Theory. 2014. Available at: http://qmplus.qmul.ac.uk/course/view.php?id=53 [Accessed 22 October 2014].
First name and surname of lecturer, title of lecture in single quotation marks, module code: module title (italicised). Location. Date of lecture.
Dr Phillipa Williams, 'Understanding 'Research' and Health Inequalities', GEG5013: Geographical Research in Practice. Queen Mary University of London. September 2014.
To find books on referencing at the Library, please click here.