Chicago Style: Footnotes and Endnotes
Chicago Manual of Style, 17th ed. Citation Guidelines
- What is Chicago Style?
- When to Include a Footnote or Endnote
- How to Create a Footnote or Endnote
- How to Create a Bibliography
- Chicago Style Author-Date System
- Chicago Style Formatting Guidelines and Sample
- Related Links
Sometimes called “Chicago Style,” footnotes and endnotes are different from in-text citation methods (such as APA or MLA). Footnotes and endnotes require you to include detailed information about each source as you cite it. With few exceptions, you should use either footnotes or endnotes in your paper, not both. Many professors prefer that you use footnotes rather than endnotes. Check with your professor to see what he or she prefers.
The guidelines for this style are published in the 17th edition of The Chicago Manual of Style: The Essential Guide for Writers, Editors, and Publishers (University of Chicago Press, 2017).
When You Have Used Your Own Words, Use a Footnote/Endnote to Cite:
- someone else's ideas or arguments that you have paraphrased or summarized.
- information or numerical data that is not common knowledge.
9.7 million soldiers were killed during World War I. 1
However, information that is considered common knowledge within a discipline does not need a footnote. For example, the following would be considered common knowledge in history:
It is well known that World War I began in 1914 and was triggered by the assassination of the Archduke Ferdinand.
Deciding what is common knowledge can be tricky. So...when in doubt, cite your source!
Use Footnotes/Endnotes Immediately After Direct Quotations:
- If you use a source’s exact words, this is referred to as a direct quotation. You must immediately follow it with a footnote/endnote. For example:
Hurl-Eamon argues for the importance of studying the wives of soldiers, claiming that they provide “a window into a much larger issue in early modern labour history.”1
- If you use a quotation that is longer than a hundred words (about 8 lines), set it off from the rest of your text as a block quotation. Block quotations begin on a new line and are indented using the indent button. Do not put quotation marks around block quotations. Block quotations are immediately followed by a footnote/endnote. For example:
Hurl-Eamon argues for the importance of studying the wives of soldiers, claiming that:
Military wives are a window into a much larger issue in early modern labour history. Though eighteenth-century wives were expected to contribute to the household coffers and the male breadwinner ideology did not take hold until the following century at the earliest, significant aspects of early modern culture presumed wifely dependence. Husbands were expected to “maintain” their wives, and parish overseers prosecuted men who did not uphold their duty of giving wives sufficient food, clothing, and shelter for their survival.2
1. Jennine Hurl-Eamon, "The fiction of female dependence and the makeshift economy of soldiers, sailors, and their wives in eighteenth-century London," Labor History 49, no.4 (2008):481, doi:10.1080/00236560802376987
2. Hurl-Eamon, "The fiction of female dependence," 481.