Notes Style Sheet


Text for all submitted articles and reviews should be double spaced. This includes indented quotations, and endnotes (do not submit with footnotes, which can become displaced during editing). Note also that indented quotations and endnotes should use the same 12-point typeface as the main body of the text.

Add no extra spacing between paragraphs; use normal double spacing. Exceptions: Add extra space before and after indented quotations, and between paragraphs in "Notes for Notes," which do not have indented first lines.


  • Use only ONE SPACE after all periods (CMS17, 6.12). Authors who learned to compose academic papers during the Tyranny of Turabian (pre-5th edition) sometimes have trouble abandoning the earlier rule to "Leave . . . two spaces after exclamation points, question marks, and periods ending sentences" (Turabian, 4th ed. [1973], 13.22). Word processing and proportional spacing have since eliminated the need to add extra space between sentences, as now is recognized by both Turabian and CMS. And consider this: Delia Ephron (sister of the late author and film director Nora Ephron) wrote in the magazine Vanity Fair (March 2015, p. 349) that the way Hollywood executives and agents know that a writer is "old" (defined as over 45!) is if the writer puts two spaces after a period at the end of a sentence.
  • A space follows periods in initials: D. W. Krummel not D.W. Krummel (CMS17, 10.12). No space in abbreviations of academic degrees: MA, PhDnot M A, Ph D.


  • Use serial commas, also known as "Oxford" commas or "Harvard" commas (CMS17, 6.19): "Items in a series are normally separated by commas. . . . When a conjunction joins the last two elements in a series of three or more, a comma . . . should appear before the conjunction. . . . since it prevents ambiguity" (emphasis added). "Whether to include the serial comma has sparked many arguments. But it's easily answered in favor of inclusion because omitting the final comma may cause ambiguities, whereas including it never will. . . . (Garner3, s.v. "Punctuation. D. Comma")

      "In addition to operas, he composed sonatas, concertos, and symphonies" (comma before "and").

  • Use semicolons between items in a series if one or more of the items themselves include internal commas (CMS17, 6.60; ModLangAssoc, 3.4.2.b).
  • Use a comma after "In" (or "in") + year at the start of a sentence or independent clause: "In 1770, Beethoven was born." (CMS17, 6.24)
  • Use a comma following a state name in running text: "He was born in Chattanooga, Tennessee, on 14 September 1956." (CMS17, 6.17)
  • No comma precedes Jr. or Sr. in names: Harry Connick Jr. (CMS17, 6.43)
  • "In most numerals of one thousand or more, commas are used between groups of three digits, counting from the right. . . . No commas are used in page numbers, line numbers (e.g., in poetry and plays), addresses, and years" (CMS17, 9.54).


  • One space follows colons in sentences.
  • In a sentence, the first word following a colon is lowercased unless (1) it is a proper noun, (2) it introduces an extract or a direct question, or (3) it introduces two or more sentences (CMS17, 6.63).
  • No space precedes or follows a colon in URLs (CMS17, 14.17).
  • In bibliographic citations, if a volume number and page number(s) are quoted, the volume number is immediately followed by a page number, the abbreviation vol. is omitted, and a colon separates the volume number from the page number with no intervening space. See the citations above of articles in NGD2 for examples of this.
  • No space follows a colon in a biblical citation (Psalm 3:5; i.e., Psalm 3, verse 5), or a ratio.


  • Notes uses three spaced periods for ellipsis points, sometimes preceded or followed by other punctuation. Beware: Some word processors will autocorrect a spaced ellipsis to an unspaced one. This must be revised manually.
  • Notes uses the "three-or-four-dot method" (CMS17, 13.50–56).
    • Three dots indicate an omission within a quoted sentence, with spaces before the first dot and after the third dot.
    • A fourth dot is added before an ellipsis to indicate the omission of the end of a sentence. The first dot is a true period, with no space between it and the preceding word.
    • A comma, colon, semicolon, question mark, or exclamation point may precede or follow three ellipsis points. Placement of this punctuation mark depends on whether the omission precedes or follows the mark.
    • Example: The one chosen for the April 1720 version in volume 1 is particularly interesting, as it is "a unique example of a draft prompt copy; it has annotations in ink in two hands, which show entrances, . . . indicate a surprising number of supernumeraries, . . . list props, . . . and confirm the existence of the bridge. . . . Any modern producer should find it a rewarding study" (p. xvii).

Slashes (forward = /)

  • A forward slash is sometimes used in dates (instead of an en dash) to indicate the end of one year, and the beginning of the next (e.g., 2014/15, no space). This is commonly seen in designating a school year or a performance season, or for journal issue or volume numbering. Prefer whichever format is used by the item being quoted.
  • In tables and works lists, slashes may be used to abbreviate and substitute for "or" where alternatives are indicated. Thus "flute/violin" signifies flute or violin, "harpsichord/organ" signifies harpsichord or organ.