MHRA – Drama, Medieval and Modern Literature and Creative Writing Style-Sheet

1. Footnotes or Endnotes

Quotations or citations within a text should be referenced by footnotes or endnotes, recording precisely the source and author of any words you have quoted or ideas you have cited.

The first reference to any text should give full bibliographical details, in the general order of Author, Title (Place name: Publisher, date), p. 111.

Follow the examples below.

Quoting from a text found in a module reader

When quoting from a text made available in a module reader, you should provide as much information about the text as you can (author, title, page, line references etc.), following the information in the module reader. E.g.

“The Tale of Sir Gareth of Orkeney”, in Beginnings of English Module Reader (2014), p. 214, lines 12-20.

A monograph

1 Declan Kiberd, Inventing Ireland (London: Jonathan Cape, 1995), p. 383.

An article in a book

2 Terence Brown, ‘Ireland, Modernism and the 1930s’, in Modernism and Ireland: The Poetry of the 1930s, ed. by Patricia Coughlan and Alex Davis (Cork: Cork University Press, 1995), pp. 36-7.

An article in a journal

3 Fredric Jameson, ‘On Magic Realism in Film’, Critical Inquiry, 12:2 (1986), 301-25 (pp. 302-3). [Note that the page span of the journal article is given without the p. or pp. abbreviations, whilst the specific pages being referred still use p. or pp.]

Something quoted by another writer

4 Patrick Brantlinger, Rule of Darkness (Ithaca: Cornell University Press, 1988), p. 36; quoted in John McClure, Late Imperial Romance

(London: Verso, 1994), p. 41.

For later references to a work already cited, give the minimum information necessary to locate it, usually the author’s surname, short title, and page number:

5 Kiberd, Inventing Ireland, p. 68.

[Note that format of title follows the first reference.]

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If you know how to use ibid. and op. cit., do so if you wish. If you are not sure, do not. In any case, the short-title system given above is often easier to follow.

Endnotes or footnotes start with the author’s name in normal format (A. N. Other); entries in your bibliography (see below) start with the author’s name in reverse order (Surname, First-name).


2. Quotations from Plays

Where a play text contains line numbers, footnote references should be given in the form:

William Shakespeare, Hamlet, ed. by Harold Jenkins (London: Methuen, 1982), I.2. 45-7.

Where a play text does not contain line numbers, footnote references should give page numbers:

Brian Friel, Dancing at Lughnasa (London: Faber and Faber, 1990), p. 24.



The bibliography is an essential part of every literary essay you submit. Every text you have read should be listed, even if you have read nothing other than a single primary text. Follow the examples below, noting that the author’s surname is the first element in each item. The list should be in alphabetical order according to the following relevant layouts. Pay careful attention to the order of elements, punctuation and formatting such as italics:

A monograph

Foster, John Wilson, Fictions of the Irish Literary Revival (New York: Syracuse University Press, 1987).

An edited volume

Ellmann, Richard, ed., The Artist as Critic: Critical Writings of Oscar Wilde (Chicago: University of Chicago Press, 1969).

A volume edited by two people

Williams, Patrick and Laura Chrisman, eds., Colonial Discourse and Post-Colonial Theory: A Reader (Hemel Hempstead: Harvester Wheatsheaf, 1994). [Use the names in the order in which they appear on the title page.]

A new edition of an old work, edited and re-published Corelli, Marie, The Sorrows of Satan, ed. by Peter Keating (Oxford: Oxford University Press, 1998).

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A modern re-issue (not a new edition) of an old work

Joyce, James, A Portrait of the Artist as a Young Man, 1916 (London: Paladin, 1988). [Note the original date of publication, and its placement.]

A book published in more than one edition

Gibaldi, Joseph, MLA Handbook for Writers of Research Papers, 7th edn (New York: MLA, 2009).

[You should always specify the edition you have used.]

An article in a book

Brown, E.K., ‘E.M. Forster and the Contemplative Novel’, in E.M. Forster: The Critical Heritage, ed. by Philip Gardner (London: Routledge and Kegan Paul, 1973), pp. 369-78.

An article in a journal

Jameson, Fredric, ‘On Magic Realism in Film’, Critical Inquiry, 12:2 (1986), 301-25. [In this example, the journal issue is 12, and the volume number is 2, but not all journals have volume numbers.]

An electronic publication

Treadwell, James, ‘The Legibility of Liber Amoris’, Romanticism On the Net 17 (February 2000) < 17liber.html> [accessed 23 August 2000] [Note the inclusion of the date you read the article – because net resources may be often changed or relocated – as well as the date of the article itself.]

An e-reader

Brontë, Charlotte, Jane Eyre (London: Service and Paton, 1897), Ebook, AmazonKindle, Chapter 3.

This is the most useful guide to consult if you have encountered some problem in formatting your notes or bibliography not covered by this style-sheet.



Checklist for writing your work

Before you submit your assignment, make sure you have answered ‘yes’ to each of the following questions:

  • Have you addressed the question/task you were set?
  • Have you written (and, if necessary, re-written) your introduction so that it offers the reader the clearest possible idea of the content and focus of your essay?
  • Have you proof-read your work?
  • Have you spell-checked it?
  • Are your references/bibliography presented in the appropriate format, using the relevant style guide?
  • Have you observed the word-limit (remembering that this includes quotations and footnotes)?
  • Have you acknowledged your use of other people’s work, using quotations or citations as appropriate and giving full source details?
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Checklist for formatting and submitting your work



You must submit your coursework by the published deadline for each module, first electronically, and then in hard copy. Failure to submit your assignment on time will incur a 5% lateness penalty for every working day that the work is late (i.e. not including Saturdays or Sundays or Bank Holidays).

The normal deadline for submitting your work is 3.30pm. Before submitting your work, check the following:

  • You have used Verdana font, point size 10, double spaced;
  • The pages are numbered;
  • You have included the essay or question title
  • You have included a page header with your Student ID number only (no name), module code and module title on the top of every page;
  • You have provided an accurate word-count which includes quotations and

When submitting your work, you need to:

  • submit a copy electronically to Turnitin through Moodle and keep the Turnitin receipt as proof of submission;
  • complete a coversheet and feedback form and staple them to the assignment, with the coversheet on top;
  • date-time stamp the coversheet;
  • submit ONE printed copy with coversheet* and feedback form to the postbox outside the School Office; (*TWO copies for PGT Dissertations only);
  • keep a copy of the work for