Excerpts from Senior Thesis: A Brief Style Guide

This style guide was modified from one created by Professor Suzannah Clark, for Music concentrators writing theses. Have a question about a type of source or situation not listed here? Check the Chicago Manual of Style Online or ask a librarian for more help.



First citation: Carolyn Abbate, Unsung Voices: Opera and Musical Narrative in the Nineteenth Century (Princeton: Princeton University Press, 1991), 4–17. https://muse-jhu-edu.ezp-prod1.hul.harvard.edu/book/41659.

Subsequent citations: Abbate, Unsung Voices, 79.

Immediately subsequent citation: Abbate, 127. [NB: use this form only to cite the same book you cited in your previous footnote]

When you cite an ebook, include the URL, the name of the database you got it from, or the format (e.g. Kindle). Look for a DOI (digital object identifier) and use it when you can; it's a permanent URL others will be able to refer to. You don't need to include the date you accessed it. No page numbers? Refer to a chapter or section if you can, or just cite the entire work. More tips for citing ebooks (Chicago Manual of Style Citation Quick Guide).

Translated book

First citation: Theodor W. Adorno, Beethoven: The Philosophy of Music, trans. Edmund Jephcott (Cambridge: Polity Press, 1998), 52.

Subsequent citations: Adorno, Beethoven, 59.

Edited book

First citation: Ian Bent, ed., Music Analysis in the Nineteenth Century (Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 1994), 2: 99–101.

Subsequent citations: Bent, ed., Music Analysis, 2: 107.

[NB: This is a multi-volume book. In this note, you're citing something from volume 2; the material after the colon is the page number(s).]

Review of a book

First citation: Ian Biddle, review of Music Analysis in the Nineteenth Century, ed. Ian Bent, Music and Letters 79 (1998): 123.

Subsequent citations: Biddle, Review.

First citation: Jennifer Szalai, "Toward New Ways of Looking and Listening," review of Liner Notes for the Revolution, by Daphne Brooks, New York Times, February 17, 2021, NexisUni.

Subsequent citations: Szalai, "Toward."

[NB: Book reviews may or may not have titles; the first citation is an example of how to cite a review without one; the second is a review with a unique title (note that the citation also includes the name of the database - NexisUni - that I retrieved it from).

Article in a book

First citation: Scott Burnham, “How Music Matters: Poetic Content Revisited,” in Rethinking Music, ed. Nicholas Cook and Mark Everist (Oxford and New York: Oxford University Press, 1999), 193–194.

Subsequent citations: Burnham, “How Music Matters,” 193.

[If you use another chapter from the same edited book, then you cite: John Smith, “The Title of the Article,” in Cook and Everist, Rethinking Music, 25–31.]

Article in a journal

First citation: Janet Levy, “Covert and Casual Values in Recent Writings About Music,” Journal of Musicology 5 (1987): 9, https://doi-org.ezp-prod1.hul.harvard.edu/10.2307/763822.

Subsequent citations: Levy, “Covert and Casual Values,” 10.

Immediately subsequent citation: Levy, 10. [NB: use this form only to cite the same article you cited in your previous footnote]

Observe how in the long form of the journal article, there's a colon before the page number; in the short form it's a comma. 

When you cite an online article, include the URL or the name of the database you got it from. Look for a DOI (digital object identifier) and use it when you can; it's a permanent URL others will be able to refer to. You don't need to include the date you accessed it.

Article in Grove – old printed edition and online edition

Printed edition: Harold S. Powers, “Mode,” The New Grove Dictionary of Music and Musicians, ed. Stanley Sadie (London: Macmillan, 1980), 12: 412–415.

Subsequent citations: Powers, “Mode,” 12: 425.

Online edition: David D. Boyden and Peter Walls, “Chin Rest,” Grove Music Online, ed. Deane Root, accessed July 12, 2021, https://doi-org.ezp-prod1.hul.harvard.edu/10.1093/gmo/9781561592630.article.05615.

Subsequent citations: Boyden and Walls, "Chin Rest."

Revised edition of a book

First citation: Charles Rosen, Sonata Forms, rev. ed. (New York: W.W. Norton, 1988), 99.

Subsequent citations: Rosen, Sonata Forms, 23.

Book in a Series

First citation: Thomas Sipe, Beethoven: Eroica Symphony, Cambridge Music Handbooks (Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 1987), iv.

Subsequent citations: Sipe, Beethoven, 99.

Recording or Video

Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart, Piano Concerto No. 17 in G Major, K. 453, Angela Hewitt, recorded July 11–13, 2011, Hyperíon CDA67919, 2013, compact disc.

Louise Farrenc, Symphonies 1 and 3, Insula Orchestra, conducted by Laurence Equilbey, recorded March 4–6, 2021, Erato 190296698446, 2021, compact disc, Naxos Music Library.

"2021 Fromm Players at Harvard co-curated by Anne Shreffler and Miranda Cuckson," Harvard Music Department Events, April 16, 2021, video, 58:12, https://youtu.be/aFnaBp9oOpA.

Citations for recordings, videos, and other multimedia can be more variable, depending on what aspect is most important to your argument: the composer, the performer, the director, and so on. Include the label number and format if you're using a physical object like a CD or DVD; include a URL or the name of a streaming service if you're using online multimedia. More tips and examples for citing multimedia (Chicago Manual of Style 14.261). 


Petr Eben, Happy Birthday: Praeludium für Orgel (Leutkirch: Pro Organo, 2004).

Cite scores like books.


“Style Guide,” Wikipedia, last modified July 18, 2008, http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Style_guide.

Citations for websites can be variable, depending on what information you're able to gather from the page. More tips and examples for citing websites (Chicago Manual of Style Citation Quick Guide).