In this book the extracts have been printed with the minimum of information judged necessary for an adequate understanding of them. The author's name or that of the corporate body responsible has been given, together with some indication as to when, and if relevant in what circumstances, the passage was written. The date normally is that of the first separate publication of a work within the author's lifetime: this may, or may not, be the exact year in which the work in question was written. In some places, notably several journals of Friends, the date given is that of the incident recounted, irrespective of whether the passage was written at that time or later in the author's life. Dates appearing in square brackets , following pre-1752 (Old Style, Julian calendar) dates, are New Style dates, according to the Gregorian calendar; for an explanation of the differences between the two, and complications resulting from Friends' use of numbers rather than names of months, see George Fox, Journal, ed J L Nickalls, 1952, pp xiii-xiv. The giving of a date alone indicates approval by the Yearly Meeting in the year shown as a part of a revision of the book of discipline. In chapters 3-9 and 11-17 where no date is given, the text was written by the 1994 Revision Committee and approved by the Yearly Meeting. Some extracts are compiled from two or more sources and in such cases two references are given, separated by a semi-colon, unless the passage from the secondary source is inconsequential in length, in which case a note to the effect is given in the following references.
From 1668 Friends in England, Wales and Scotland met for their annual meeting for discipline in London. This yearly meeting was referred to as 'the Yearly Meeting of the People called Quakers, held in London' or a similar phrase. From 1900 official publications used the form 'London Yearly Meeting' both for the event and for the institution, even though after 1905 Yearly Meetings were held outside London every four years or so. Yearly Meeting 1994 agreed (minute49) that from 1 January 1995 the yearly meeting would be known as 'the Yearly Meeting of the Religious Society of Friends (Quakers) in Britain, or, in short form, Britain Yearly Meeting'. Extracts from the period before 1900 are attributed to 'Yearly Meeting in London' and from 1900 to 1994 to 'London Yearly Meeting'.
In the text of the book the tam has been to give a faithful and accurate representation of the author's intention. Spelling is, in general, modernised. Punctuation and capitalisation have normally been brought into line with modern practice, though in words relating to God the usage of the original author has often been followed. Words and dates not in the original are included in square brackets  and omissions are indicated by three ellipses (.) unless the omission is of a single word or short phrase making no material alteration to the purport of the text. Dots of omissions have not been shown where the passage has a large number of such omissions: in such cases a note to this effect given in the following references. In the list of sources LSF as a location indicates the Library of the Religious Society of Friends, London and 'Yearly Meeting' indicates the Yearly Meeting of Friends held in London before 1900.
The detailed references which follow are intended to guide readers to the sources; if this list leads to a fuller study of the works from which the extracts have been taken, it will have achieved one of its purposes. Biographical introductions, preambles and notes in italics have been drafted by the 1994 Revision Committee and are not listed, except where they contain quotations.
Some extracts are taken from works written by a number of Friends working in collaboration; where it has been possible to identify an author individually responsible for a passage, this has been done. Writers of extracts published anonymously or pseudonymously have also been identified where possible. Sources of quotations (whether identified as such by inverted commas or not) within the text have normally been given.