Please Note: This article is written for users of the following Microsoft Word versions: 2007, 2010, 2013, 2016, 2019, Word in Microsoft 365, and 2021. If you are using an earlier version (Word 2003 or earlier), this tip may not work for you. For a version of this tip written specifically for earlier versions of Word, click here: Deleting All Footnotes.

Deleting All Footnotes

Written by Allen Wyatt (last updated January 27, 2024)
This tip applies to Word 2007, 2010, 2013, 2016, 2019, Word in Microsoft 365, and 2021


Certain types of documents require the use of footnotes to help document sources or provide additional information relative to the content being discussed. At some point you may want to delete all the footnotes in your document. One thing you can try is to do a simple search and replace to remove all the footnotes. Follow these steps:

  1. Press Ctrl+H to display the Replace tab of the Find and Replace dialog box. (See Figure 1.)
  2. Figure 1. The Replace tab of the Find and Replace dialog box.

  3. In the Find What box, enter ^f. This indicates that you want to search for footnote marks.
  4. Make sure the Replace With box is empty.
  5. Click on Replace All.
  6. Close the Find and Replace dialog box.

This approach works because when you delete footnote marks, the footnote associated with that mark is also automatically deleted.

If you find yourself ridding lots of documents of their footnotes, you may want to create a macro that will do the job for you. This macro can then be assigned to the Quick Access Toolbar or to a shortcut key. The following macro will remove all the footnotes in a document:

Sub DelFoots()
    Dim fn As Footnote

    For Each fn In ActiveDocument.Footnotes
        fn.Delete
    Next 
End Sub

Note:

If you would like to know how to use the macros described on this page (or on any other page on the WordTips sites), I've prepared a special page that includes helpful information. Click here to open that special page in a new browser tab.

WordTips is your source for cost-effective Microsoft Word training. (Microsoft Word is the most popular word processing software in the world.) This tip (11407) applies to Microsoft Word 2007, 2010, 2013, 2016, 2019, Word in Microsoft 365, and 2021. You can find a version of this tip for the older menu interface of Word here: Deleting All Footnotes.

Author Bio

Allen Wyatt

With more than 50 non-fiction books and numerous magazine articles to his credit, Allen Wyatt is an internationally recognized author. He is president of Sharon Parq Associates, a computer and publishing services company. ...

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