Skip to main content

Legal Citation

Citing Journal Articles

This is the citation pattern for journal articles:

author's name, title of article, year, volume and issue number, journal or review name, first page number


H Patrick Glenn, "A Concept of Legal Tradition" (2008) 34:1 Queen's LJ 427.

Citation Breakdown:

A. Author's Name

  • initial(s) or first name (as it appears in the journal), then last name, followed by a comma

B. Article Title

  • the title of the article is placed in quotation marks

C. Year

  • the year is always contained in round brackets

D. Volume and Issue Number

  • always include the volume and issue number
  • the issue number follows the volume number with a colon, e.g. 25:4 (volume 25, issue 4).

E. Journal or Review

  • use the proper abbreviation for the journal. Refer to the McGill Guide Appendix D for a list of periodical abbreviations. For more information, consult the section on Finding Abbreviations for Law Reports and Journals.

F. Page Number

  • this number refers to the first page of the article within the journal

G. Pinpoint

  • Pinpoint to a page or section. See the following example:

Michael G Bridge, "Discharge for Breach of the Contract of Sale of Goods" (1985) 28:4 McGill LJ 867 at 913.