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Wesley Historical Society Style Guide


Submissions should normally be in electronic form and sent as an email attachment. The preferred format is Microsoft Word, Times New Roman typeface, 11 point font size, lines double-spaced throughout. Margins should be at least 2.54 cm (1 inch) on all sides.

Illustrations should be supplied separately as .tiff or .jpeg files. Please supply proof of permission to use. Please indicate where in the text the illustration should ideally be placed, page breaks permitting, and supply any caption in a separate “captions” file.


Paragraphs may have a set indent or be indented with ONE tab. Please do not use extra line space between paragraphs – NEVER with a manual return.
Footnotes (not endnotes please) should be inserted using the formatting system for your word processor.
Tabular matter should be kept to a minimum. Simple tables may be inserted as “Table”; complex forms must be created in Excel. Please indicate where in the text the Table should ideally be placed, page breaks permitting.
Formatting: Keep manual formatting to a minimum. Do not right justify lines. All indents should be done using tabulation. The use of the spacebar to align text should be avoided at ALL times.


Consistency: Authors should check their manuscripts for consistency in such matters as the use of capital letters, italics, spelling, style of headings and subheadings, and method and lay-out of citations. Headings should be short and useful.

Please try to follow these guidelines.
Quotations should be indicated by single quotation marks. When a quotation is more than five lines long it should be indented as a separate paragraph by increasing both the left and right margins by 1.27 cm (½ inch), without quotation marks and with an extra line space above and below. Quoted material should be retained in its original form and spelling. Quotations within quotations should be indicated by double quotation marks even if single quotation marks appeared in the original. If something in a quotation may be mistaken for an error you may insert [sic] after the offending word, but do so sparingly. A quotation full of apparent spelling mistakes, etc. could have one [sic] at the end.
Punctuation. The punctuation of a sentence which includes a quotation goes (in modern UK usage) after the concluding quotation mark; but punctuation belonging to the quotation goes before the quotation mark. This includes when the quotation itself is a whole sentence, or follows a colon (:). For example, John Wesley recalled that he felt his heart ‘strangely warmed’. ‘After my return home’, he reported, ‘I was much buffeted with temptations; but cried out, and they fled away.’
Commas are used to separate words in lists except before the final and: ‘hymns, prayers, readings and sermons were all part of the service.’ But sometimes this rule is broken to avoid ambiguity: ‘prayers, readings, sermons, and hymns ancient and modern’, because the adjectives ‘ancient’ and ‘modern’ refer only to the hymns and not to the sermons as well.
Semi-colons can be used where a list becomes complex, as in: ‘The essential ingredients of a service were hymns, songs and music; preaching, reading and recitals; and prayers of praise and intercession.’
Full stops or points (but NOT commas) indicate the end of a sentence. They should be followed by one space. (The former typewriter convention of inserting two spaces should not be used.) Although some style sheets suggest there should be no space following a full point which concludes an abbreviation, the recommended rule is again for one space after each full point unless the full point is followed by another punctuation mark such as a comma, quotation mark or bracket. (See the examples in the Abbreviations section, below).
Abbreviations should be used consistently. It may be useful to abbreviate long titles to which frequent reference is made, in which case the abbreviation should be indicated in brackets following the first usage, e.g. Methodist New Connexion (MNC).
Full points should not be used in acronyms or abbreviations (e.g. UK, WTO, BBC) but only after initials in names (e.g. Smith, K. L.).
British usage favours omitting the full stop in abbreviations which include the first and last letters of a single word, such as Mr, Mrs, Ms, Dr, and St, Ltd, etc. (Note: eds = editors but ed. = editor.)
If the abbreviation consists only of the first part of a word, then you should put a full stop at the end: Rev. is preferred to Revd; but be consistent (and note that Rev. is a style, not a title, so write either the Rev. John Smith or the Rev. Mr Smith, not the Rev. Smith).
Days of the week: Sun., Mon., Tues., Wed., Thurs., Fri., Sat.
Months of the year: Jan., Feb., Mar., Apr., May, Jun., Jul., Aug., Sept., Oct., Nov., Dec.
Dates should be expressed as day month year, as in 1 January 1999
Numbers should be spelt in words from one to nine and thereafter appear as numerals except when the number is at the beginning of a sentence or when the number is an approximation [about a hundred, not about 100]. Precise numbers within a listing in the same paragraph should maintain the same form [9 sheep, and 10 goats, not nine sheep and 10 goats].
The second of a range of numbers should be contracted as follows: 1−13; 21−3; 21−33; 89−101; 102−06; 108−13; 123−4; 999−1001. That is, the most economical form should be used, except when indicating numbers in the teens, the first nine numbers after 100 etc., or across a hundred or a thousand. Numbers beyond 999 should have a comma separator after the thousand. This avoids confusion with a year date. For example, ‘There were 1,066 horses killed at the battle of Hastings’.
Hyphens and Dashes
The dash (technically an EN-space) is twice the length of a hyphen – the two should not be confused. A dash on its own will indicate, for example, a span of time: 2009−2012; the 1914−18 war. Dates BC should always be spelt out in full: 155−144 BC.
A dash with a space either side will indicate an interjected statement or break in a sentence, and should not be overused – although it can be useful at times. For example – and this is only an example – when you wish to add a supplementary thought to the principal sentence.
A hyphen links two words, often adjectives describing the same noun. For example, the eighteenth-century Church; eighteenth- and nineteenth-century Wesleyanism; but if the meaning is clear do not let the number of hyphens build up. Mid-twentieth century Methodism is preferred to mid-twentieth-century Methodism.
Care should be taken as the hyphen can change meaning. For example, “she re-covered her pew” and “she recovered her pew”; “the vice-president” and “the vice president”.
Do NOT use your word processor’s automatic hyphenation.
The apostrophe
Abbreviated plurals should not be apostrophised (e.g. 1990s, not 1990's); MPs not MP’s.
The apostrophe indicates that a letter has been omitted, and such omission should not normally be used in formal prose: e.g. isn’t = is not. In older forms of English the possessive tense used es or is endings, and this is now indicated as ’s. If the phrase cannot be reworded to use the word ‘of’ then the possessive ’s is not required. For example, “the lady’s coat” = the coat of the lady; but “she was wearing a ladies coat” is merely describing the coat and not possession of it.
But note that possessive pronouns (his, hers, its, theirs) do not need an apostrophe as no letter has been omitted.
Proper names ending in s take the ’s as usual, except for Moses and Greek names ending in es. So use Moses’ and Jesus’s. (The poetic Jesu’s is simply to help a hymn line scan!)
Capital letters should be used when referring to a specific body, organisation or office (e.g. the UK Government) but not otherwise (e.g. previous governments). In normal use “church” is not capitalised, “the Church” is. Other examples of usage might be Todmorden Methodist Church.


Footnotes, using the Insert Footnote facility in Microsoft WORD, should be used to acknowledge the sources of information/quotations in your work, and should appear at the foot of the page on which material is cited. Different types of material should be cited in the following manner:
Manuscript references
These should take the form of: Location of Deposit, Reference (or Call) Number and name of particular archive, Description of the item, detail of the place within the item. For example:
Aberystwyth, National Library of Wales, Calvinistic Methodist Archive, Howel Harris’s Diary, no. 24.
Dallas, Texas, Southern Methodist University, Bridwell Library, Charles Wesley Family Materials: Mart Freeman Shepherd to Sarah Wesley, 14 December 1797.
Washington, Library of Congress, 0813F, Sir George Cockburn Papers, Log Book of The Captain, 5 November 1806.
Individual sheet(s) of manuscript (folio, folios) are abbreviated as fol. or fols. The face of (say) folio 5 is indicated as fol. 5r (r = recto) and the back is fol. 5v (v= verso)
Unpublished titles (e.g. theses) should be placed in single inverted commas and should not be italicised. For example:
A. M. Teale, ‘Methodism in Halifax and District, 1780 to 1850’, unpublished MSc. thesis (University of Bradford, 1976)
Printed books
Titles of books and journals should be italicised.
Henry D. Rack, Reasonable Enthusiast: John Wesley and the rise of Methodism (London: Epworth Press, 1989).
Phyllis Mack, Heart Religion in the British Enlightenment: gender and emotion in early Methodism (Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 2008).
(Note, as in the above examples, that initial capital letters are used in sub-titles of books only where a capital letter is called for.)
Chapters / Essays in books
Titles of articles and chapters within books should be placed within single inverted commas in roman type.
Ted A. Campbell, ‘John Wesley as diarist and correspondent’, in Randy L. Maddox and Jason E. Vickers (eds), The Cambridge Companion to John Wesley (Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 2010), pp. 129−43.
Journal articles
David Hempton, ‘John Wesley and the rise of Methodism’, Bulletin of the John Rylands University Library of Manchester, vol. 85, nos 2 and 3 (Summer and Autumn, 2003), 31−56.
David Ceri Jones, ‘“Like the time of the Apostles”: The Fundamentalist Mentality in Eighteenth-Century Welsh Evangelicalism’, Welsh History Review, vol. 25, no. 3 (June, 2011), 374−400.
Note that pp. (= pages) is not required before the pages of whole articles, but is needed for a reference to a particular place within an article. Hence:
John A. Hargreaves, ‘“Hats Off”: Methodism and Popular Protest in the West Riding of Yorkshire in the Chartist Era: a case study of Benjamin Rushton (1785−1853) of Halifax’, Proceedings of the Wesley Historical Society, vol. 57, part 5 (May 2010), 161−77 (p. 168).
Abbreviations in footnotes
These should be kept to a minimum, apart from:
a) When quoting from the same source for the second time in the same piece of work a shortened title should be used:
Rack, Reasonable Enthusiast, p. 34.
Campbell, ‘John Wesley as diarist and correspondent’, p. 130.
b) When quoting from the same source in two successive footnotes use the abbreviation Ibid.
Rack, Reasonable Enthusiast, p. 34
Ibid. p. 36
Websites can be cited in footnotes, in full at the end of the reference, separated by a comma. The accessed date must always be given.
J. Zittrain and B. Edelman, ‘Documentation of Internet Filtering in Saudi Arabia’ (2002) Berkman Center for Internet & Society, http://cyber.law.harvard.edu/home/ [Accessed date].

A Note for Contributors from the United States

Some of the above may not be standard practice in American English. The editors request that all submissions should attempt to follow standard modern UK English conventions of spelling, punctuation and grammar and should be changed to this form except where American English is in the original, as in the website article cited in the previous paragraph. At all times the footnote referencing system given in this guide MUST be used (and not the author-date or Harvard system).

The Wesley Historical Society
December 2013

Downlod the Wesley Historical Society Style Guide as a PDF file from this link.

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