Where should you put the reference number for footnotes?
Reader’s question: When using footnotes, where should the number link be located – before or after the punctuation mark (e.g. comma, semicolon)?
Answer: The Australian government Style manual (2002) says:
‘Superscript placement: Place superscript note identifiers:
- at the end of a sentence or clause rather than immediately after the words to which they relate
- before all punctuation marks save the end-of-sentence ones
- wherever possible immediately after direct quotations.
Avoid using superscript note identifiers in headings.’
I translate this to mean that you put a footnote link before a comma or semicolon, but after a full stop.
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