Please Note: This article is written for users of the following Microsoft Word versions: 2007, 2010, and 2013. 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: Heavy-Duty Footnotes.

Heavy-Duty Footnotes

by Allen Wyatt
(last updated June 30, 2016)

Carlisle ran into a problem with a professor that was using Word to write a "parallel book." The book would feature Latin text on one page with the parallel English translation on the adjacent page. Each page could contain footnotes, and the footnotes must be counted independently of each other. Carlisle wondered if there was a way to accomplish such a task in Word.

The short answer is no, there is no way. Word was never designed to do such a task. There are, however, workarounds. The first workaround is to simply rely on the book's publisher to handle the footnote issue. This answer is not as flippant as it may at first seem. Many professors are published by academic presses, and those companies wouldn't do their final typesetting in Word. Instead, they use Word as a source of the text that they import into their composition software. A quick check with the publisher may save hours of footnote frustration, because they may want the footnotes done in an altogether different manner that doesn't even involve Word's automatic footnoting.

Assuming that the professor is going to self-publish, then another simple workaround is to just store each of the parallel translations in different document files. Put the English translation in one document and the Latin in another. Then each can have its own footnotes. When it comes time to create the final document, just print one translation on each side of the paper. On the first printing pass, for instance, you could print the Latin document. Then turn the paper over and print the English document. This may take some trial-and-error, but it is ultimately quite flexible.

The downside to this, of course, is that the page numbering will also be independent in each file. That means that each file will have a page 1, etc. What you probably want is to have one document represent the even page numbers and the other represent the odd page numbers. This is handled easily enough by using a field to calculate the page numbers that are printed in the header or footer:

{ = 2 * { PAGE } }
{ = 2 * { PAGE } -1 }

The first field is used to calculate and display the even page numbers and the second one does the odd page numbers.

WordTips is your source for cost-effective Microsoft Word training. (Microsoft Word is the most popular word processing software in the world.) This tip (12848) applies to Microsoft Word 2007, 2010, and 2013. You can find a version of this tip for the older menu interface of Word here: Heavy-Duty 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. ...

MORE FROM ALLEN

Opening a Workbook to a Specific Worksheet

When you open a workbook, Excel displays the worksheet that was visible when the workbook was last saved. You may want, ...

Discover More

Word Count for Headers and Footers

Getting a word count for an entire document is rather easy. If you want a word count for a special part of a document ...

Discover More

Noting Table Rows Containing a Character

If you want to have Word highlight rows in a table that contain a certain character, you need to resort to using a macro. ...

Discover More

Comprehensive VBA Guide Visual Basic for Applications (VBA) is the language used for writing macros in all Office programs. This complete guide shows both professionals and novices how to master VBA in order to customize the entire Office suite for their needs. Check out Mastering VBA for Office 2010 today!

More WordTips (ribbon)

Understanding Footnotes and Endnotes

Footnotes and endnotes are often used in scholarly and formal writing as a way to provide additional information about a ...

Discover More

Reference to a Range of Endnotes

When multiple endnote references are used at a given point in your document, you may wonder if there is a way to compress ...

Discover More

Changing the Footnote Separator

When you print a document that uses footnotes, Word normally places a small line between the end of the document body ...

Discover More
Subscribe

FREE SERVICE: Get tips like this every week in WordTips, a free productivity newsletter. Enter your address and click "Subscribe."

View most recent newsletter.

Comments

If you would like to add an image to your comment (not an avatar, but an image to help in making the point of your comment), include the characters [{fig}] in your comment text. You’ll be prompted to upload your image when you submit the comment. Maximum image size is 6Mpixels. Images larger than 600px wide or 1000px tall will be reduced. Up to three images may be included in a comment. All images are subject to review. Commenting privileges may be curtailed if inappropriate images are posted.

What is nine more than 4?

There are currently no comments for this tip. (Be the first to leave your comment—just use the simple form above!)


This Site

Got a version of Word that uses the ribbon interface (Word 2007 or later)? This site is for you! If you use an earlier version of Word, visit our WordTips site focusing on the menu interface.

Newest Tips
Subscribe

FREE SERVICE: Get tips like this every week in WordTips, a free productivity newsletter. Enter your address and click "Subscribe."

(Your e-mail address is not shared with anyone, ever.)

View the most recent newsletter.