Here is the quote I am wondering about:

The part that I am unsure about is how to quote the part, basically in the middle of the sentence that says "BY EVERY DEVICE OF BRUTAL INSULT". Should this part be in all caps in the quotation, or should it be in bold or italics? Should I alternate fonts on that part? How do I quote this sentence?


2 Answers 2


I work quite extensively with printed documents from that period, and I feel it is important to remain as true as possible to the text of the original. In this case I would retain the original capitalisation and punctuation (which are the author's) and dispense with the forced line breaks and small capitals, (which are probably the typesetter's). I would also consider adding an editorial comment in brackets that the emphasis is original, though the placing of the comment would be a matter of personal taste. Thus:

"...quiet. Thus the Government, BY EVERY DEVICE OF BRUTAL INSULT and petty nagging, are doing their utmost to exasperate the people. Whenever there... " [original emphasis]


You may want to retain the original formatting if

  • it is important for a point you are trying to make or
  • changing it could alter the original meaning or confuse your audience.

Otherwise, there is usually no reason to replicate the original formatting. From The Chicago Manual of Style (14th ed.), section 10.8:

Typographical style, particularly of display type, may be changed to agree with the style of the work in which the quotation occurs. . . . Those elements of typography that are not an author's doing but the publisher's or the printer's need not, and often should not, be reproduced exactly.

The author seems to have capitalized the second line in order to emphasize it, so changing the case might alter his or her meaning. It would probably be a good idea, then, to retain the capitalization. There is no need for bold, italics, or a different font.

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