Does anyone know if there exists a .bst file for the Society of Biblical Literature citation format? Or a biblatex style?


The SBL style described here is basically an author-year style; in the bibliography, however, the year is not displayed right after the author name(s), but at or near the end of the respective entry. In case you want to use biblatex, you should load the package like this:


For minor modifications that might be necessary to create a "true" SBL biblatex style, have a look at Guidelines for customizing biblatex styles. To remove the "In:" for @article entries, use Herbert's answer to Suppress "In:" biblatex.

  • Thanks. I found that the historian style is almost identical and close enough for my purposes. The following command gives what I need \usepackage[bibstyle=historian,citestyle=authoryear-comp,natbib,sorting=nty,babel=hyphen,printseries]{biblatex} – Rob Hyndman Mar 10 '12 at 1:52

I'm the author of the original SBL LaTeX BibTeX styles. This is no longer supported.

But for those who find this thread in google, you might be interested in a completely new implementation covering SBLHS 2nd ed. done in BibLaTeX.

See https://github.com/dcpurton/biblatex-sbl for source and issue tracker.

It's also available in CTAN and in TeXLive and MiKTeX.

It's much more flexible and robust than the BibTeX implementation, and much easier to maintain.


Have a look at this page: http://wiki.marshwiggle.net/doku.php?id=sbllatex:main There are many examples including some classes and packages dedicated to this kind of style.

You can find the corresponding .bst file here: http://svn.marshwiggle.net/sbllatex/trunk/bst/sbl.bst

  • Unfortunately I couldn't even get their example files to compile without errors. I am using MikTeX on Windows and I think these files might assume TeXLive. In any case, right now the site has completely disappeared. – Rob Hyndman Mar 10 '12 at 1:49

The same people who used to publish the MarshWiggle website have started another with a more robust SBL Latex style. I have been using this for quite a while with very good results. I made a few changes to the essay style to suit my needs, but the BST is very good.


  • The link is about a 'traditional' BibTeX style, not one for biblatex. – Joseph Wright May 17 '12 at 5:42
  • You know, I never new there was a difference... – Ghostpsalm Jun 4 '12 at 2:30

If anyone's interest I have maintained Robet Fischer's SBL-paper and am porting biblatex-chicago which I hope to have on CTAN soon. Contact me for more info.

Note: I just found https://github.com/dcpurton/biblatex-sbl/blob/master/README.md

I couldn't tell you just yet how different or similar this is to mine.

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