A cup of reference

img_2976The articles revolves around the style of a particular style of referencing called the Harvard system, which uses author and year. The origin is unknown but the usage of this system is wide. There was a need to create an appropriate system of referencing. It was Edward Laurens Marks work that systematically put this style in too usage. It began with inconsistent styles as footnotes.

His work was comfortably accepted and it was practiced with ease. Authors become to use this citation and gave Mark the recognition. A volume giving tribute to Marks’s work was published which was almost like a manual of use. It changed from scientific referencing to cataloging due to the appropriate nature and accurate precision of formatting.

“The origin of the phrase “Harvard system” remains unexplained”( Chernin. 1975, p.43).

The origin remained in a questionable system. It was negated that it was established by the Harvard university but by an individual who was impressed by the bibliography reference.

Reference is a way of acknowledging the specific research cited in a written literature which does not belong to the author themselves. It gives credit to the original author, creates validation, expresses subject knowledge of the author and provides relevance.


Chernin (1975) argues the format of Harvard style is recognisable but there is always an debate about being the most acceptable.


Chernin, E. (1988) ‘The “Harvard system”: a mystery dispelled’, The British Medical Journal, Volume 297, pp.1062-1063.