Chicago Notes-Bibliography Style
The Notes-Bibliography style is one of two different types of referencing outlined in the Chicago Manual of Style, 16th edition.
Consecutively numbered markers in the text refer the reader to bibliographic citations, in footnotes or endnotes, which acknowledge the source of information. The examples given in this guide illustrate the use of footnotes, termed "notes."
A bibliography at the end of the document provides full details of all sources cited, and consulted, by the writer.
Numbered markers in the text may be created using the footnote function of word processing software. Footnote markers are consecutive, superscript (raised), Arabic numerals. They should be inserted at the end of a sentence, or at the end of a clause, following any punctuation used, (including brackets).
The corresponding number at the beginning of the footnote is full size, not raised (superscript) and followed by a full stop.
"Ultimately we will learn more about some of the celebrated events in Australian history if we turn to the old almanacs and their tables of the moon."1
1. Geoffrey Blainey, Black Kettle and Full Moon: Daily Life in a Vanished Australia (Penguin/Viking: Melbourne, 2003), 7.
Bibliographic citations in footnotes
Bibliographic citations in footnotes may appear in a full form, or in a shortened form.
Full bibliographic details of a work are given in the footnote at which first reference is made to it. Any further, or subsequent, references to this work in the footnotes, are presented as shortened citations. A shortened citation consists of the author's family name, and the title of the work, shortened if more than four words.
However, if your bibliography includes all works cited in your notes, the Chicago Manual 16th edition (Section 14.14) advises that even those notes which contain the first citation of a particular work may be in shortened form.
The examples provided in these pages give both the full and shortened forms of citations for different types of works.
Formatting citations in footnotes
Punctuation, spacing and the order of elements in the citation are important, and examples should be followed carefully. Notice for instance:
- The author's name is not inverted, and is written in full.
- Publishing details of books are enclosed in brackets.
- Journal titles, book chapter titles are enclosed in double quotation marks.
The first line of each footnote is indented two spaces from the page margin.
Creating the bibliography
Your bibliography should document all the works you consulted in preparing your essay, whether you cited them directly, or not.
Entries should be listed alphabetically by the first author's surname or family name. If there is no named author, list by the first word in the work's title, ignoring 'A', 'An' or 'The'.
If the entry consists of more than one line of text, the following lines of that entry are indented by two spaces.
Formatting citations in the bibliography
The format of citations in the bibliography is similar to that used in the full footnote citation. However, the following differences are important.
- The name of the first author is inverted, so that the surname or family name appears first.
- The elements, or sections, of the citation are separated by full stops, not commas.
- Publishing details for books are not enclosed in brackets.