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Citing and referencing: MHRA

A guide to the styles recommended by Monash schools and departments for students and researchers

MHRA Modern Humanities Research Assicuation Referencing Guide

The MHRA style is often used in the arts and humanities. It uses footnotes that fully reference a citation. The footnoting is MHRA's major advantage: a reader does not need to consult the bibliography to find a reference, as the footnote provides all the detail.

These pages provide a guide to using the MHRA style for citing and referencing your assignments.

Additional support information can be found here:

Modern Humanities Research Association

Cardiff University; Referencing in the MHRA style

MHRA Primary and Secondary Sources

MHRA requires that Primary sources and Secondary sources are listed separately in the bibliography.

Primary sources are original materials. These can include newspaper articles, letters, memoirs, autobiographies, speeches, diaries, images, government records etc.

NOTE: Primary sources need to be alphabetically listed separately from secondary sources in your bibliography.

Examples:

First footnote:
Fulbert of Chartres, The Letters and Poems of Fulbert of Chartres, ed. by Frederick Behrends (Oxford: Clarendon Press, 1976), pp. 100-03 (p.102).

Bibliography:
Fulbert of Chartres, The Letters and Poems of Fulbert of Chartres, ed. by Frederick Behrends (Oxford: Clarendon Press, 1976)

Secondary sources cite, comment on, or build upon primary sources.

NOTE: Secondary sources need to be alphabetically listed separately from primary sources in your bibliography.

Examples:

First Footnote:
Bonnie Wheeler, Listening to Heloise: The Voice of a Twelfth- Century Woman (New York: St. Martin's Press, 2000), p. 64.

Bibliography:
Wheeler, Bonnie, Listening to Heloise: The Voice of a Twelfth-Century Woman (New York: St. Martin's Press, 2000)

MHRA General Rules

Footnotes:

  • Sequential superscript numbers should be used in the text of the essay to indicate a footnote.1 
  • A corresponding superscript number should be used at the beginning of the footnote.
  • When citing a source for the first time always reference in full.
  • Subsequent footnotes of the same source should include the authors last name (where possible), volume number (if relevant) and page number/s.
  • Subsequent footnotes with no author should include a shortened version of the source title, volume number (if relevant) and page number/s.
  • When citing more than one source by the same author or multiple authors with the same last name, subsequent footnotes should include the authors last name, a shortened version of the source title, volume number (if relevant) and page number/s. (Only use the short title of a source when referencing more than one work by the same author or citing multiple authors with the same last name).

Formatting footnotes:

  • All footnotes should end with a full stop unless the sentence ends in a square bracket.
  • A note reference number should be placed at the end of the sentence following most punctuation, except for a dash which it should precede.
  • Italics should be used for the titles of individually published works, collections and websites; as should the names of parties in legal cases.
  • Titles of book chapters, exhibitions, web pages, a work within a collection, etc. should be written in plain type with quotation marks.
  • Titles of manuscript collections should be written in plain type without quotation marks.
  • Author names are not inverted, and are written in full.
  • Publication details should be enclosed in brackets.
  • Use the abbreviation p. before listing a single page number.
  • Use the abbreviation pp. before listing a range of pages.

Bibliography:

  • There should be separate entries for sources that are contained in the same collection or volume.

Formatting the Bibliography:

  • Arrange alphabetically.
  • If there is more than one source by the same author arrange by authors last name then in alphabetical order of the title, disregarding words such as: an, a, the.
  • Do not use a full stop at the end of each reference.
  • The name of the first listed author or a source is inverted so that the surname appears first. When a source has multiple authors only the name of the first listed author is inverted.
  • Arrange sources with no author alphabetically by title.

1 Modern Humanities Research Association, MHRA Style Guide, 3rd edn (London, Modern Humanities Research Association, 2013), p.57.

Acknowledgements

I gratefully acknowledge the hard work of the team members involved in this project:

Janet McGarry
Lucie Goudie

EndNote

Its is important to note that EndNote is not compatible with MHRA