What Is the Difference Between Footnotes & Endnotes in the Chicago Writing Style?

The Chicago Manual of Style is one of a few conventional writing manuals used in college courses and professional research publications for style and consistency. Footnotes and endnotes are notations made in a research paper that tie to references presented within the content of the document. The notes usually offer additional insights on studies or items related to references cited in the paper.


The primary difference between a footnote and an endnote is their location in the paper. A footnote is placed at the bottom of the page that contains the reference it refers to. An endnote is placed at the end of the paper. A footnote is often a more abbreviated extension of an in-text citation while endnotes often provide thorough details about the reference cited. In either case, a small number is expressed above the in-text citation -- superscript --, with the matching number in the footnote or endnote containing the notation.

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