When citing a work on a Web site, should I use the original publication date or the last-updated date?

As the MLA Handbook notes, “When a source carries more than one date, cite the date that is most meaningful or most relevant to your use of the source” (42). Thus, if you are citing a work on the Web that lists both an original publication date and a last-updated date, use the last-updated date or, if provided instead, the last-reviewed date. Providing the last-updated or last-reviewed date lets your reader know that the information you are citing is current.

For an example of a works-cited-list entry listing a last-reviewed date, see our post on crediting the reviewers of an online article.

Work Cited

MLA Handbook. 8th ed., Modern Language Association of America, 2016.

Published 12 July 2019

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