Guidance for contributors

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This section of the website contains guidance notes for those wishing to contribute articles to CoA. The notes can also be downloaded as a PDF (for which you will need a pdf programme such as Adobe Acrobat reader) and in MS Word.

Method of submission

The editors request that any article submitted for publication be initially sent either in hard copy or as a computer file in Rich Text Format or Microsoft Word on disk to the editors at The College of Arms, Queen Victoria Street, London EC4V 4BT. Hard copies should be printed in double spaced lines. Notes (which will be printed as footnotes) should be provided in a separate file, with the references indicated on the hard copy, and not embedded in the text file although many word-processing programmes offer this feature. Illustrations should be sent as high-quality image files or as clear hard copies such as photographic prints or line drawings. Preliminary and subsequent communications can be had with the editors by e-mail at Please do not send unsolicited image files by e-mail.

Provision of illustrations

Authors are responsible for obtaining and providing the illustrations they wish to appear with their articles, and for obtaining permission for them to be published in The Coat of Arms. They are asked to have particular regard to subsisting copyright in any images they wish to use, whether that of the artist, the photographer or the library, archive or repository where the image in question is held. Illustrations should be black and white photographs or line drawings where possible, since the printing of colour greatly adds to the publishing cost of the journal.

Long quotations

Authors are asked to exercise judgment in quoting extensively from copyright text; the rule of thumb for ‘fair use’ in this context limits direct quotation to a maximum of 200 words.

Tables and pedigrees

When an article includes genealogical or other tables it is particularly important that accurate hard copy is provided. The digital version need make no attempt at final formatting unless the lay-out of the table is extremely simple; however the editors would welcome inclusion of all table text in a simplified format in the digital files.

Format of submissions

The editors would gratefully appreciate any effort made by authors to conform to the conventions described in the detailed guidance on citation styleblazon and abbreviations, and exhibited in the journal. Submissions will not be rejected because of failure to comply; but it saves much time and labour if submitted articles are already more or less compliant with the norms that will be applied. With regard to spelling, punctuation, capitalization, italicization and abbreviation, the editors will implement the norms set out in Hart’s Rules for Compositors and Readers at the University Press, Oxford (39th edn., Oxford 1983), as modified and augmented in the following notes. All conventions are to be applied sensibly and sensitively, and if the context demands it they can be set aside or modified.


General acknowledgements and thanks should appear in the final footnote of the article, appended to the last word of the main text. Individuals may be thanked for specific points, such as provision of references, in a footnote at the relevant point in the article.