Cathy Aranda
Cathy Aranda

How to Cite Your Sources in Chicago Style: Notes and Bibliography

6 min read

Published on: May 10, 2024

Last updated on: May 11, 2024

Chicago Style: Notes and Bibliography

If you are writing an academic paper or a book, you may need to cite your sources using a specific citation style. 

One of the most common citation styles is the Chicago Manual of Style (CMOS), which has two main variants: the notes and bibliography system and the author-date system

In this blog post, we will focus on the notes and bibliography system, which is preferred by many writers in the humanities, such as literature, history, and the arts.

So, without further ado, let’s dive right in!

Notes and Bibliography in Chicago Style 

In Chicago style, the notes and bibliography system consists of two main elements: footnotes or endnotes and a bibliography. 

Footnotes or endnotes are used to provide information about the sources of quotations, paraphrases, or other references. 

A bibliography is a list of all the sources you have cited in your paper, arranged alphabetically by the author’s last names.

Here is how you can create notes and bibliography in Chicago style:

How to Create Notes in Chicago Style 

Here is how you can create notes that follow the Chicago style:

Formatting the Note Number

In-text Citation:

Footnote/Endnote:

  • Start each note with the same superscript number used for it in the text.
  • You can either use regular text with a period and space or superscript the number without a period. 

Writing the Notes 

Full Notes (first citation):

  • Include the author's full name, title of the source (book, article, etc.), publication information (city, publisher, year), and relevant page number(s).

Short notes (subsequent citations):

  • Use the author's last name, a shortened title (four words or less), and the page number(s).
  • If citing the same source immediately after a full note, use "Ibid." (meaning "in the same place").

Here is an example to help you have a better understanding of adding footnotes in Chicago Style:

Notes and Bibliography Chicago Style

How to Create a Bibliography in Chicago Style 

The bibliography should appear at the end of your paper, on a separate page with the heading “Bibliography” (centered and bolded).

Here is how you should format a bibliography in Chicago Style:

Hanging Indent:

  • Use a hanging indent for each entry, meaning that the first line is flush with the left margin, and the subsequent lines are indented by half an inch.

Line Spacing:

  • Use double spacing for the entire bibliography, except for single spacing within each entry. Leave one blank line between entries.

Alphabetization: 

  • Arrange the entries in alphabetical order by the last name of the first author. If there is no author, use the title of the source. Ignore articles (a, an, the) at the beginning of titles. 

Punctuation:

  • Use periods to separate the elements of the entry, and use a comma before the page number or URL.

Author(s):

  • Use the author’s last name, followed by a comma and the first name of the first author. For the next authors, use the first name followed by the last name. 
  • Use “and” before the last author. If there are more than three authors, use the first author’s name followed by “et al.” (meaning “and others”).

Title:

  • Use the full title of the source, in quotation marks for articles or chapters, and italics for books or websites. Capitalize the first word and all major words in the title.
  • Use the name of the editor, translator, or compiler after the title, preceded by “edited by,” “translated by,” or “compiled by.”

Publisher:

  • For books, use the place of publication, followed by a colon, and the name of the publisher. 
  • For journal articles, use the name of the journal, followed by the volume, the issue (in parentheses), and the date (in parentheses).
  • Use the name of the website, followed by the date of publication or last modification, for websites.

Page Range:

  • If the source is a part of a larger work, such as a chapter in a book or an article in a journal, include the page range of the part you used in the entry. 
  • Use an en dash (–) to separate the first and last page numbers. Do not use “p.” or “pp.” before the page numbers. 

Accessed Date:

  • Use “accessed” and the date (month, day, year) to indicate when you accessed an online source.

Here is an example of a bibliography section in Chicago:

Chicago Style References

Tips for Using Notes and Bibliography in Chicago Style

To use the notes and bibliography system effectively, you need to follow some best practices and avoid some common pitfalls.

Here are some tips to help you:

  • Be consistent in your citation style and format throughout your paper.
  • Use clear and accurate citations that allow the reader to locate and verify your sources.
  • Use reliable and credible sources that support your claims and arguments.
  • Check your citations and bibliography for errors and typos before submitting your paper.

Final Thoughts!

The notes and bibliography system is a versatile and widely used citation style that can help you cite your sources clearly and comprehensively. 

By following the guidelines and examples in this blog post, you can create footnotes or endnotes and a bibliography that adhere to the Chicago Manual of Style. 

Remember to be consistent, accurate, and concise in your citations, and to use reputable and relevant sources for your paper.

Save Time and Hassle - Try Our Free Citation Machine 

If you want to save time and hassle when citing your sources in Chicago style, you can use our citation machine Chicago to generate your references in seconds. 

Just enter the details of your source, choose the notes and bibliography system, and get your citation ready to copy and paste. 

Our citation machine is accurate, easy to use, and free. Try it now and see for yourself. 

Cathy Aranda

WRITTEN BY

Cathy Aranda (Marketing)

Cathy is a highly dedicated author who has been writing for the platform for over five years. With a Master's degree in Mass Communication, she is well-versed in various forms of writing such as articles, press releases, blog posts, and whitepapers. As an essay writing guide author at PerfectEssayWriter.ai, she has been helping students and professionals improve their writing skills by offering practical tips on research, citation, sentence structure, and style.

Cathy is a highly dedicated author who has been writing for the platform for over five years. With a Master's degree in Mass Communication, she is well-versed in various forms of writing such as articles, press releases, blog posts, and whitepapers. As an essay writing guide author at PerfectEssayWriter.ai, she has been helping students and professionals improve their writing skills by offering practical tips on research, citation, sentence structure, and style.

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