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Italics

In the old days, some typewriter keyboards did not offer a way to type italics, so underline marks were a signal from the writer to the typesetter that the text should be italicized.

Underlining still indicates italics in typography. Avoid using the underline function except to indicate italics.

Italicize the titles of books, journals, periodicals, newspapers, pamphlets, proceedings, collections, theses, dissertations, plays, movies, operas, oratorios, paintings, drawings, sculptures, radio and television programs and other works of art.

  • Michael Crummey’s novel River Thieves.
  • Jack Granatstein’s book Who Killed Canadian History?
  • The Toronto Star, the Globe and Mail, the Telegram, the Toronto Sun.
  • Some of the publications produced at Memorial University include: The Communicator, Memorial’s employee newsletter, the Gazette, Research Matters, Luminus, MUN Med and Partners.
  • William Shakespeare’s Romeo and Juliet
  • Frank Capra’s movie It’s a Wonderful Life, starring James Stewart
  • Handel’s Messiah
  • Rodin’s sculpture The Thinker
  • Voice of Fire, a painting by Barnett Newman
  • Ralph Beninger’s dissertation is titled Freud: The Dream Maker.

NOTE: When it comes to poetry, only epic poems are italicized. Regular short poems are set in quotation marks in the usual roman type.

  • Milton’s Paradise Lost (an epic poem) was written well after "On His Blindness" (a short poem)
  • Do not italicize titles of articles, chapters in books, short stories, regular poems, lectures, papers read at meetings, manuscripts in collections.
  • Italicize foreign words and phrases, including Latin phrases.
    • Staff members gathered to say grazie and obrigado to the governments of Italy and Portugal for funding scholarships.
    • He received a doctor of laws honoris causa from Memorial University of Newfoundland.
    • Memorial’s motto is provehito in altum. (Note: do not capitalize the first letter except at the beginning of a sentence.)