Skip to main content

Bluebooking and Legal Citation: Interpreting Citations

Bieber's or Prince's?

Justin Bieber and Prince Charles

Justin Bieber by Joe Bielawa / CC BY 2.0
Prince Charles by Dan Marsh / CC BY SA 2.0

Don't be confused by references to Bieber's Dictionary, Prince's Dictionary, and Prince's Bieber Dictionary: these are all different editions of the same book. 

For years, the book was referred to by the name of its original editor, Doris Bieber. 2006 saw a brief attempt to rename the book after its new editor, Mary Miles Prince, but researchers were so used to the Bieber name that it was quickly changed back to Prince's Bieber Dictionary.

Prince's name pops up frequently in legal citation: she is also the editor of Prince's Dictionary of Legal Citations, the co-editor of World Dictionary of Legal Abbreviations, and the coordinating editor for the Bluebook.

Interpreting Citations

As frustrating as it can be to format citations properly, it's even more frustrating to find a useful-looking citation and realize that you have no idea where to find the material cited or even what the material is.

The abbreviation dictionaries below can help. Look up the abbreviations found in the citation to learn what they stand for and where the material might be found.