This style sheet is based on the recommendations in the Chicago Manual of Style, 15th edition. Developed for publications for which a style guide has not already been prescribed, it is well suited to non-fiction work relating to Japan for general readers. CIC will adapt elements of style, in accordance with standard practices, to suit the preferences of the client. CIC style is suitable for books and articles for general and serious readers (journalism, tourism, consumer literature, art catalogs, etc).

For writing for scholarly or specialized readers, especially for citation and bibliography style, CIC recommends reference to the Monumenta Nipponica Style Sheet, at


For abbreviations of country names and organizations, see CMS
U.S. (use as adjective only; for dollars, use US$),
United States: spell out when used as a noun, unless excessive in the context
U.K. (as adjective only)
United Kingdom: spell out when used as a noun, unless excessive in the context
U.S.S.R. (as adjective only; as much as possible use Soviet)
U.N. (as adjective only; but, UNHCR, UNESCO, UNPKO)
Terms in other languages: Korean  Kr.   Japanese  Jp.   Chinese  Ch.   Sanskrit  Sk.


For offices and titles use minimal capitalization (see CMS 8.21-8-23).
President Barack Obama
Barack Obama, president of the United States
U.S. president Barack Obama
Emperor Akihito
the emperor of Japan
imperial court of Japan

for place names/geographical names
Lower case descriptive words such as city, township, ward, prefecture, river, temple, shrine.
E.g.: Ehime prefecture, Osaka prefecture,
Lake Biwa
Mt. Fuji, Mt. Aso
Tama river, Uji river, Nihonbashi bridge, Shinjuku ward, Todaiji temple, Ise shrine

Citation Style

For documents with numerous and complex citations from Japanese works, we recommend the MN citation style. See




Thomas H. Etzold and John L. Gaddis, eds., Containment (New York: Columbia University Press, 1978), p. 27.

Article in a periodical

1 Peter Owen, “Twelve Years of Dutch Children’s Television: Efforts of Public and Commercial TV Channels for Children up to Twelve Years Old,” European Journal of Communication 28 (2003), pp. 33–52.
2 Kodaira Sachiko, “Igirisu no kodomo-muke terebi wa do kawatta ka” [Changes in Britain’s Television for Children], HKC (March 1998), pp. 2–15.

Article in an edited volume:

1 John L. Gaddis, “The Strategy of Containment,” in Thomas H. Etzold and John L. Gaddis, eds., Containment (New York: Columbia University Press, 1978), p. 27.

Second references:


Owen, “Twelve Years of Dutch Children’s Television,” p. 33.

Etzold, Thomas H. and John L. Gaddis, eds. Containment. New York: Columbia
University Press, 1978.

Article in a periodical
Owen, Peter. “Twelve Years of Dutch Children’s Television: Efforts of Public and
Commercial TV Channels for Children up to Twelve Years Old.” European Journal of Communication 28 (2003), pp. 33–52.
Kodaira Sachiko. “Igirisu no kodomo-muke terebi wa do kawatta ka” [Changes in
Britain’s Television for Children]. HKC (March 1998), pp. 2–15.

Article in an edited volume:
Gaddis, John L. “The Strategy of Containment.” In Thomas H. Etzold and John L.
Gaddis, eds., Containment, pp. 27–60. New York: Columbia University Press, 1978.

Citations: Periodical notation
For citing volume and number for a periodical, use colon and numbers only. Give year only in parenthesis (omit month or season unless it provides the sole means of identifying the specific issue).
e.g., MN 54:4 (1999), p. 240 [Do not italicize the acronyms used for journal names]
e.g., Foreign Affairs 54:4 (1999), p. 240; Political Science Today 104 (1999), p. xxx.
Note: Be sure to insert the spaces accurately.

Citations: Capitalization of titles
Use the “up” style for capitalization in titles of works, except for the romanized or non-English titles of works, which should be lower case after the first letter.
•  Use “author, ed.,….” Instead of “author (ed.),….”
•  Use lower case for “vol.” and “chapter” when mentioned in notes.
Japanese journals, use lower case after first word; no translation is necessary after the romanized title.

Citations: Romanization
•  Use Hepburn system; follow the “n” rule (see Japan Style Sheet for explanation).
•  Set off Japanese particles as separate words (e.g., not Sekai no nakano Nihon but Sekai no naka no Nihon)
•  Use macrons in romanized Japanese for scholarly works on Japan or others intended for readers knowledgeable about Japan.
•  Omit macrons (take out any extra letters the authors have inserted in their place) for romanized Japanese in works for general readers, for the Web, for periodicals for general readerships.
•  Remove excess hyphens.
•  Names of publishers. See MN Style Sheet. Use publisher’s preferred English name or romanization of company name.
Some examples:
San-ichi Shobo, Chuo Koron Sha (Chuo Koron Shinsha since 1999), Kyoiku Sha, Kajima Kenkyujo Shuppankai, Jitsugyo no Nihonsha, Jiji Press, Bungei Shunju, Yuhikaku, Asagumo Shimbun, Shinchosha, Tokyo Daigaku Shuppankai (for its Japanese publications), University of Tokyo Press (for its English publications), U.S. Government Printing Office

Citations: Japanese works by government organizations

For publication for general readers (as opposed to scholarly readers) may need to indicate publishers using official English name rather than Japanese name:
Scholarly style
Boeicho, Boei hakusho [Defense White Paper] (Tokyo: Okurasho Insatsukyoku, 1998), pp….
General reader style:
Defense Agency, Boei hakusho [Defense White Paper] (Tokyo: Ministry of Finance Printing Bureau, 1998).
Ministry of Foreign Affairs, Gaiko seisho [Diplomatic Blue Book] (Tokyo: Ministry of Finance Printing Bureau, 1998)

Titles of Works
For Japanese works, provide a gloss in parentheses or square brackets. Set in roman, even if the work is already published under that title in English. Italicize the English title if mentioned independently in the text. For a Japanese work that has an accompanying English title on its cover or title page, this is not considered an “official” title but may be a form of graphic decoration (o-kazari), and if it is used as the provisional rendering of the Japanese title, it should not be italicized and should be enclosed in square brackets.

Note: Words in all caps in Japanese titles need not be printed in all caps in English.


Dates should be given in month, day, year order (American style) unless otherwise stipulated.

Note: Lunar calendar dates, if needed, should be given in parentheses following the Western-calendar date. For style see MN Style Sheet.

April 11, 1867 (Keio 3.3.7)
January 15, 1869 (3rd day of 12th month, Meiji 1)


Spelling and word division follow Merriam-Webster’s Collegiate Dictionary, 11th edition. Japanese words included in the English lexicon (shoji, tokonoma, sumo, etc.) will be treated as anglicized words rather than Japanese unless otherwise specified.


Establish maximum of 3 heading levels after chapter title
E.g., Small-cap, centered large divisions of chapter; bold, flush-left subheads; italicized sub-subheads.
Edit out extra levels of headings
Eliminate heading numbers
Headings should be of reasonable number (i.e., not too many on a page).
Keep headings short and punchy. Do not try to sum up the entire content of the section
Editing headings
Never use a subheading under a larger heading without text in between. Move section of text or trim heading.


Follow the advice of CMS, 6.41, 6.42, ff.

Do not allow a compound word to be divided again in typeset text. Edit to shorten or expand text as needed.


Use italics for non-English terms, passages of romanized Japanese text, book and periodical titles, names of large artistic works (films, art works, major musical compositions, etc.). Repeat use of italics for those words within given text (“italicize every time” rule). Do not italicize Japanese words that have entered the English lexicon (see Webster’s 11th).
If a text has many italicized words, try to render as many in English as possible.


Under heading
Do not indent the line under a heading. Should be flush left with heading

Indent of 1 pica or 5 mm advisable for text of 7 to 18 cm. width.

Block indents
Indent about 1 pica or 5 mm. Open space above and below is optional or may be half line above and below.

Name Order

Japanese names should be given in traditional order, surname first, unless author/client prefers a different rule. When name is given as author of a work published in English in which the name was reversed in publication, leave in reverse order. For Japanese more active (in publishing) outside Japan it may be preferable to leave name in reversed order. Variant romanized spellings preferred by authors or other persons should be respected (Satoh Yukio, Akira Iriye, Harumi Befu, Kyôgoku Jun-ichi, etc.)
For other Asian names, as much as possible follow “country practice.”
Editorial note regarding names may be worded as follows:
Japanese names in this work are given in customary order, surname first.
The names of persons in this book are given according to country practice.

Numbers and numerals

General text
Spell out numbers one to ninety-nine; put all numbers 100 and over in Arabic figures (except when many numbers are mentioned in a sentence).
Research-related text
In text mentioning many figures, as a general rule, spell out numbers one to nine and give in Arabic figures all numbers 10 and above, except ages of people. For numbers under 10, when many figures are clustered in a sentence, use Arabic for all.

Punctuation/Quotation marks

Make sure there is no space before colons in English text. In bilingual text, the colon and space following should be in the English font.

When colon is followed by a question or pertains to more than one sentence, the first word after the colon is capitalized (CMS 15, 6.64). In other contexts, the first word is lower case.

Quotation marks
Make “smart quotes” (curved quotes), single quotes and apostrophes. Input from keyboard (Mac only), or from symbol chart.
Periods and commas should be inside quotation marks, whether single or double.
Colons and semicolons are outside quotation marks.

- hyphen
– en dash (used mainly for dates, page numbers) (Mac input: option + hyphen)
— em dash (used for interruptions in a sentence, etc.) Note: do not leave space on either side of em dash. (Mac input: option/shift + hyphen)

Serial comma
Use the serial comma.


Percent sign
Spell out “percent” (in place of %) in non-technical texts (except for research reports containing large amounts of data). In tables accompanying the same text use either symbol or word, depending on space and appearance.
Change to “and” in all cases (e.g., names of publishers and companies), except for trademarks and other special uses. (See CMS 8.174 and 17.106)

CIC-preferred spellings

postwar, prewar
Nakasone Administration, the administration of Nakasone Yasuhiro
Obuchi Cabinet 
members of the Cabinet
Diet, Diet members, member of the Diet
House of Representatives, House of Councilors, upper house, lower house
chief cabinet secretary, deputy chief cabinet secretary
the Constitution (when referring to the Constitution of Japan)
constitutional law
U.S.–Japan security treaty (lower case, as is not formal name of treaty)
U.S.–Japan … Guidelines
Defense Outline
second world war
World War II