United Nations logo United Nations Editorial Manual Online  

Italics and bold print


Italics are used for the following:

  • Foreign words that do not appear in the twelfth edition of the Concise Oxford English Dictionary
  • The titles of laws and decrees in a foreign language
  • The titles of court cases, e.g. Corfu Channel case, United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland v. Albania
  • The titles of books, United Nations publications, CD-ROMs, periodicals, newspapers, films, plays, radio and television programmes and works of art
  • The names of ships
  • Latin names of animal and plant species (for further information, see The Chicago Manual of Style)
  • Variables in mathematical expressions (for further information, see The Chicago Manual of Style)

Italics are not used for the following:

  • Emphasis
  • Non-English names of organizations, institutions and corporations

For rules on the use of italics in resolutions, see Basic documents/Resolutions and other formal decisions of United Nations organs/Drafting and editing.

Bold print

In running text, bold print is used only for conclusions and recommendations in documents submitted to legislative bodies for consideration and action (see General Assembly resolution 52/214, sect. B, para. 25).  


United Nations Editorial Manual Online © 2004-2017 (New York). Prepared and maintained for the United Nations under the authority of the Chief of the Editorial Service, Department for General Assembly and Conference Management. Mention of the names of firms and commercial products does not imply the endorsement of the United Nations. For technical or editorial enquiries, please contact the Webmaster at enriquezf@un.org.