Style Guide

Updated: February 4, 2024 EV.

This style guide is intended for use in preparing all official publications of U.S. Grand Lodge, O.T.O., with Agapé, and the U.S.G.L. website as primary examples. The guide is for new, contemporary texts issued by Grand Lodge. Historical documents, even ones created within living memory, have used other style choices; these should be preserved when they are quoted or reproduced. For issues not addressed in this style guide, refer to The Chicago Manual of Style.

Frequently Used O.T.O. and Thelemic Terms

Civil and Magical Names

Civil names of O.T.O. members may optionally be preceded by the terms Brother, Sister, or Sibling. Magical names should be preceded at least on the first reference with the terms Frater or Soror; siblings may choose Fratrem or Cognatum optionally. After first use in a given document, these terms may be abbreviated as Fr., Sr., Frm. or Co., respectively.

When crediting a writer on the page where their submission appears, their name is listed exactly as in their submission, which may or may not include a fraternal title of any kind.

Internet References

Hyperlinks should normally appear with appropriate anchor text, with the underlying URL invisible. E.g., to direct readers to the U.S.G.L. Treasury website, it is better to write "Further information is available on the U.S.G.L. Treasury website" than "Further information is available at" If an entire site is best referenced by its domain name, use the freestanding domain name as the hyperlinked text. E.g., "The best source of information about the U.S.G.L. Treasury is"

Email addresses should be rendered in visible form as a hyperlink to a mailto: URL for that address (e.g., "Contact us at if you have comments"). Not all browser configurations handle mailto URLs properly; making the address visible allows users to fall back to copying and pasting the address.

When referring to internet resources in printed text:


Write each term in full once before using an abbreviation. The abbreviation may appear in parentheses following that first use for added clarity. E.g. "Ecclesia Gnostica Catholica (E.G.C.) is a religious organization. Through E.G.C, we provide..." On a public website, this should be done on each page (as there is no predicting which page a visitor will read first).

Abbreviations in which each letter is spoken separately should be written with periods following each letter (e.g., E.G.C., O.T.O., U.S.G.L.). Abbreviations that are spoken as single words (acronyms) should be written without periods (e.g., NOTOCON).

Common noun abbreviations that are used in the plural may omit periods (e.g., "URLs"). Avoid such constructions if it is not overly cumbersome or confusing to spell out the abbreviation. E.g., "Uniform Resource Locator" is not a widely recognized term, but URL is; on the other hand, "Powers That Be" is better than "PTBs."

As a special case, the abbreviation for era vulgaris is EV (no periods, small capitals if possible). It should be separated by a space from the date to which it applies (e.g., "January 2, 1987 EV").

The abbreviation for Mysteria Maxima Mystica should be written with Masonic-style triple-points  (M∴M∴M∴), as should the name A∴A∴ and the degree abbreviations P∴M∴ and P∴I∴. (NB: The "M" abbreviations for the first through third degrees are archaic; but if they are used they should take one, two, and three dots respectively, as shown in Liber LII.)  No other abbreviations should be written with Masonic-style triple-points to indicate abbreviation except in quoting material which did so in the original text. The Masonic-style triple-points do not constitute punctuation and should be followed with a period when they occur at the end of a sentence.

Date Format



Avoid the terms "lesser feast" and "greater feast." For an individual's birth or death, simply use those words or equivalents. For the celebration of a birth, use "feast for life." For a remembrance of a recently deceased individual (i.e. a funeral), use "feast for death." So, for example, it is incorrect to write "Brother Bob celebrated his Greater Feast on June 1," or "Brother Bob celebrated his feast for death on June 1;” it is correct to write "Brother Bob died on June 1, and his friends celebrated his feast for death three days later."

Grammatical Issues

For More Information

For questions of style and usage, use the following references: