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house style

a style of writing and presentation that is specific to a particular group, company or organisation

COMMENT: The aim of a house style is to give consistency to all the products of a publishing house, thus making them more recognisable to the reading public. In the case of magazines, contributors will be sent a style sheet which shows how they should lay out their contributions. A house style will cover many aspects of layout, such as headlines, position of folios, typefaces and sizes; it will also cover details of spelling and punctuation: the form for writing dates (1st January 1999 or January 1st, 1999 or 1st Jan. 1999 or 01.01.99, etc.); the use of full stops after abbreviations (Mr or Mr., P. O. Box or PO Box, etc.). Most publishing companies have their own style sheets which are given to editors and form part of the training programme for new editorial and production staff. Many printers as well as publishers have their own house style and many follow the style of one of the University Presses (Oxford and Cambridge).



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