Instructions to authors

Style guidelines for authors

Manuscripts should be sent, in triplicate, to the Secretary, Royal Irish Academy, 19 Dawson Street, Dublin 2, Ireland, and should include the author’s permanent address. The manuscript will not be returned to the author, who should therefore keep a complete copy. Proofs will be sent to the author once; the author is expected to read them carefully and return them promptly. The author may be charged for changes against the manuscript made by him/her in the proof.


Manuscripts must be typed on one side only of A4 paper, in 12pt font, double spaced, with wide margins, and three copies submitted. The text should be in a clear, concise style and written in English. Submission of the manuscript is taken to mean that the contents are original and that no similar paper will be submitted to another journal. All the pages of the submitted manuscript should be numbered consecutively and the approximate position of illustrations and tables clearly indicated in the text on the left-hand margin.

                Papers will be accepted for publication by the Editors on the advice of at least one referee. They should conform to the following layout:

(a) Research papers should not exceed 15,000 words; discussion papers should not exceed one printed page (approximately 600 words).

(b) An informative brief title should be given, avoiding abbreviations. For retrieval and abstracting purposes the main subject matter covered by the paper should be indicated by the title.

(c) Name(s) of author(s) and professional address(es) should be given at the end of the paper, after the references.

(d) An abstract of not more than 200 words is required, which should be intelligible without reference to the main text.

(e) In the main text, use three or fewer levels of subheading. Metric measurements should be given wherever possible and abbreviated as 6mm, 4kg, 25km etc. Names of taxa should be in italics. Illustrations and tables should be referred to as in the following examples: Fig. 7, (Fig. 7), Figs 7 and 8, (Figs 7, 8), Table 2, (Table 2). Footnotes will not be accepted.

(f) References should conform exactly with the examples given below. Journal titles should be given in full. Titles of books should also be given in full, together with the edition, place of publication and publisher.

(g) Tables should be on separate pages and each should have a brief title.

(h) Captions of illustrations must be typed on a separate page. The journal does not print plates; all halftones will be printed in their proper place in the text. Consequently, all illustrations should be termed figures in the text and numbered consecutively.

Electronic submission of text and illustrations

Authors are encouraged to submit their text in electronic format, on CD (please do not send text by e-mail). The electronic version will be requested by the editors after the paper has been accepted for publication and should incorporate any amendments required by the referee or the Editors. Authors must ensure that the disk version and the hard copy are identical; discrepancies can lead to publication of the wrong version. Illustrations may be submitted as electronic files but should also be submitted as hard copy; authors are advised to consult the Publications Office regarding format and resolution requirements for electronic artwork.

Original illustrations

These should be drawn in black ink on smooth white card or on high-quality transparent plastic. They should be drawn at about twice the required size. Letters should not be smaller than one millimetre after reduction. Laserprinted drawings generated with computer drafting facilities are also acceptable. The maximum size for illustrations is 21cm by 14cm. It is recommended that they be constructed either for the entire width of the type area (14cm) or for a column width (6.7cm). Large folding figures and coloured maps are subject to rigorous scrutiny and will be accepted only in special cases or when publication is assisted by a subvention. All illustrations should bear the author’s name and figure number. Do not attach captions to the illustrations. Authors should submit one good copy of the original artwork at the drafted size and three copies reduced to publication size.


If photographs (black-and-white) are used, one print of each should be submitted at the final size (21cm by 14cm maximum) on glossy paper with strong contrasts. Definition must be extremely sharp. In the case of a composite illustration (as in palaeontology) prints should be trimmed to final dimensions and carefully mounted (avoiding undue waste of space) on white or black board with a suitable adhesive. Three high-quality photocopies of photographs should accompany the originals. Where possible, the convention of lighting from the top left should be followed.


References should conform to the following style:

Crow, M.J. and Max, M.D. 1976 The Kinrovar Schist. Scientific Proceedings of the Royal Dublin Society 5 (A), 429–41.

Harris, A.L., Holland, C.H. and Leake, B.E. (eds) 1979 The Caledonides of the British Isles: reviewed. Geological Society Special Publication No. 8. London.

Raup, D.M. and Stanley, S.M. 1971 Principles of paleontology. San Francisco. Freeman.

Williams, A. 1969 Ordovician faunal provinces with reference to brachiopod distribution. In A. Wood (ed.), The Pre-Cambrian and Lower Palaeozoic rocks of Wales, 117–54. Cardiff. University of Wales Press.

These should be referred to in the text as follows: ‘Crow and Max (1976) stated...’ . ‘The folds in this area (Crow and Max 1976) are...’ .

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