Republished e-book: different from print version [from Electronic source using APA 6th ed.]


Republished editions of classic texts sometimes present problems, centred around the date of publication. With some classic texts, like a Shakespeare play, it is sensible to use the date of the copy in hand only, as the original date of publication will depend on which edition the modern copy is based, and it may be a conflation of more than one edition - and few readers would suppose it was written in modern times. For classic texts, give the original publication date, if it is known, and if it is different from the online version. The date given first should be that of the version used.

Some e-books which can be downloaded onto a computer or mobile device have different page numbering from the print version, e.g. e-books from the Project Gutenburg website, Kindle books, Apple iBooks etc. Many electronic sources do not provide page numbers. If paragraph numbers are visible, use them in place of page numbers (using the abbreviation para.), e.g. para. 582. Alternatively, cite the chapter or section, followed by the paragraph number (if appropriate) e.g. Chapter 4, para. 3). 

Whenever possible the URL you give should be a stable URL and link directly to the webpage itself. A stable URL, also known as a 'permalink' will not be generated 'on-the-fly' and is more likely to remain accessible. To check if a link to a URL is stable, paste the link into the address bar of an Internet browser to make sure that it works. The Discovery Service provides a permanent link known as a 'Permalink' for each item in its index, including those in HTML format.  To see the Permalink, click on the title of the item and look under Tools on the right-hand-side of the screen where you will see a Permalink link. Click on this link and the URL will be displayed for you to copy and paste into your reference. Although you must give the full web address (or URL) in your reference list, you do not show this in the body of your essay. Your in-text reference must match the start of the reference as it appears in your reference list. Use the author if your reference has one; otherwise use the first few words of the title.

For books from online collections such as Amazon and iTunes, give the web address of the homepage rather than the full URL of the e-book.

Standard Form

Single author:
Author, Initials. (year). Title of book (Edition if later than first e.g. 3rd ed.)[e-book version if known]. Retrieved month day, year, from web address (Original work published year of publication)

Multiple authors:
Author, Initials., Author 2, Initials., & Author 3, Initials. (year). Title of book (Edition if later than first e.g. 3rd ed.)[e-book version if known]. Retrieved month day, year, from web address (Original work published year of publication)



Donne, J. (1959). Devotions on emergent occasions. Retrieved from (0riginal work published 1624)

Citation in Text

Donne (1959/1624, Chapter. XII) compares life to a vapour ...


  • If the online version refers to a print edition, include the edition number after the title inside brackets.  Otherwise, leave out this part of the reference.

  • List up to seven authors in the reference. For eight or more authors, include the first six authors' names, then insert an ellipsis ( . . . ), and add the last author's name.

Citing multiple authors in the text of your work:

  • With two authors both names should be listed in each citation e.g. (Duncan & Goddard, 2003, p. 99).

  • With three to five authors, name all authors the first time, then use et al. (and others). For example: the first time it would be (Moore, Estrich, McGillis, & Spelman, 1984, p. 33) and subsequent references to the same publication would use (Moore et al., 1984, p. 33).

  • Note that when the in-text reference occurs naturally within the sentence "and" should be used before the final author. But when the entire reference is enclosed in brackets the ampersand (&) should be used.