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Guidelines for Articles

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Because ORB is located in cyberspace at several different sites, there is no mechanical restriction on the size of an article. However, articles should be coherently centered around a single theme. Some topics might be too complex for a single article, in which case authors should consider writing several articles. An article on Henry II, for instance, would be a worthy topic for an article, but a complete review of English monarchy would be too much. Furthermore, shorter articles save on load time and allow other users to take greater advantage of hypertext linking than excessively longer ones. Authors should exercise judgment in deciding the length of their articles.

At the same time, ORB articles should be significantly detailed so that they provide a useful resource tool to student researchers from the undergraduate level onward, including professional academicians that work in areas related to medieval history. However, to ensure clarity, authors should presuppose an intellectually capable reader who is unfamiliar with the history of medieval Europe and who works in a discipline outside of medieval history.

Articles should be divided into subsections. Section titles should be placed on the left margin. The last section title should be Sources. This section should list bibliographical references for the sources used in writing the article and other relevant sources that readers may consider for further information. Authors should follow the conventions of the Chicago Manual of Style (Turabian) when formatting bibliographical items.

Articles should not have footnotes or endnotes. Citations to secondary texts should be internal, consisting of the author's name and the relevant page number enclosed within parentheses and then followed by the punctuation for the sentence. For example, This is a quote from a secondary text (Nelson 42). The text cited should be included in the Sources section at the end of the article. If an article uses two or more works by a single author, an abbreviated title should be used in place of the last name in the reference. Ambiguity should be avoided in all citations. Primary sources should be used whenever possible. All citations to primary sources should follow the conventions established by the profession. Where convention disagrees, citations should follow the precedent established by articles already included in the encyclopedia.

Titles to primary and secondary sources, words in foreign languages, etc. should be italicized. In HTML, commands are enclosed within carets, the great than and lesser than signs. To italicize text in HTML, enclose the letter "i" within carets, and enclose "/i" to turn of the italicization. (This command produces underlining when viewing HTML files using LYNX.)

Authors may italicize text for emphasis, though this should be done sparingly.

Centuries should be spelled out in lower case, (e.g., second century, fourteenth century); when used as adjectives, they should be hyphenated, (e.g., third-century).

Numbers should be spelled out, if they can be spelled out in one or two words, unless they precede a unit of measure.

Hypertext links may be included in articles. Links to existing ORB sites will be included in your article by an editor when your article receives its initial markup. Links to sites beyond ORB should not be preceded by an icon. If you need further clarification on the above guidelines, please direct your inquiries to the editor at theeditor@the-orb.net.

Copyright © 1995-1999, Carolyn P. Schriber. This file may be copied on the condition that the entire contents,including the header and this copyright notice, remain intact.

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The contents of ORB are copyright © 1995-1999 Laura V. Blanchard and Carolyn Schriber except as otherwise indicated herein.