Use cases of performing Chicago style annotation

Chicago-style source citations are presented in two versions:

Chicago-style source citations come in two varieties: (1) notes and bibliography and (2) author date. If you already know which system to use, follow one of the links above to view sample citations from various common sources. If you’re not sure which system to use, read on.

Many authors working in the humanities, including literature, history, and the arts, prefer the system of notes and bibliography. In this system, sources are cited in numbered footnotes or notes. Learn more about this type of citation at . Each footnote corresponds to a superscript number in the text. Sources are also usually cited in a separate bibliography. A wide variety of sources may be used in the notes and bibliography system, including unusual sources that do not fit the author-date system.

The author-date system is more common in the natural and social sciences. In this system, sources are briefly cited in the text, usually in parentheses by author’s last name and year of publication. Each citation in the text coincides with the list of sources used, which provides complete bibliographic information

Despite the differences between using numbered notes and citing sources in parentheses in the text, both systems have a similar style. Most authors choose the system used by other authors in their field or required by their publisher. Students who do not know which system to use can find more information here.

Citation rules

In most cases, note numbers (digits) should be placed at the end of a sentence or placed after a punctuation mark (except for the dash preceded by a number). Place note numbers (digits) sequentially throughout the document or article, beginning with 1. Use superscript font in the text to number notes by the sources used (e.g., 1) and regular full-size font to describe sources in the notes themselves, except for manuscripts, since in this case superscript numbers may be used both in the text and notes.

Subsequent citations of sources previously cited in the text should be in short form. The short form usually includes the name of the author, editor or translator (without any abbreviations, such as ed. or per.), the main title of the cited work, and the corresponding page numbers. The abbreviated title does not include initial articles, includes a key word or words, and is in italics.

A Chicago-style bibliography is an alphabetical list of all sources cited in the work as well as some not cited but indirectly related to the work and cited for additional reading. The bibliography is usually placed at the end of the paper. The works listed in the bibliography should be arranged alphabetically by author’s (or editor’s) last name, or if there is no author or editor, by the title of the work or by a keyword so that the reader can find the work of interest if necessary.

Citations within the text

(Thoreau 2016, 177–78)


(Grazer and Fishman 2015, 12)


(Chicago Manual of Style 2015)


  1. Book . Cooper, James Fenimore. The Hobbit, or There and Back Again. London: John Ronald Reuel Tolkien, 1937.
  2. Serial / journal article (printed edition). Lundblad, Michael. “Epistemology of the Jungle: Progressive-Era Sexuality and the Nature of the Beast.” American Literature 81, no. 4 (December 2009): 747-773.

Electronic resource (remote access). Ward, Paul.  “Antarctica Fact File.” Cool Antarctica. Last modified 2001. URL

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