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Footnotes for WordPress

Footnotes for WordPress enables easy-to-use fancy footnotes for WordPress posts.


  • To create a footnote, use [ref]...[/ref] to wrap the text of your note.

    Example: This is footnoted.[ref]This is the text of the of the footnote.[/ref]

  • Normally footnotes use numbered superscripts to indicate the footnote, beginning with 1. You can choose to use symbols instead, like *, **, †, etc. To use custom text for a footnote's superscript, use [ref superscript="*"]...[/ref], and replace the asterisk with whatever symbol or text you want to use.

  • Normally footnotes begin at 1 and count up towards infinity. If you want to use numbered subscripts but need to reset the number they count from, use the number attribute. For example, if you want the current subscript to be numbered 128, and for subsequent subscripts to be numbered 129, 130, etc., use: [ref number="128"]...[/ref].

  • To create a footnote with a specific unique ID, instead of the one that the plugin will automatically generate for you, use [ref name="..."]...[/ref]

    Example: This is footnoted.[ref name="my-unique-id"]This is the note text.[/ref]

  • If you define an ID for a footnote, you can also refer back to the same footnote later on in the document, using the [backref name="..."] shortcode.

    This is footnoted.[ref name="source1"]Source 1[/ref]

    So is this.[ref name="source2"]Source[/ref]

    And this one comes from the same source as the first.[backref name="source1"]

  • To force the plugin to display notes at a different location instead of at the bottom of the post, use [references/]


    This is footnoted.[ref]Text[/ref]

    As are some[ref]Text[/ref] other things.


    See also: Endnotes.

  • If you wish to change how footnotes are styled, you can alter them in your WordPress theme stylesheet, or using JavaScript. The default elements and classes are <a class="footnoted"> for superscript links to footnotes, <ol class="footnotes"> for the list of references, and <li class="footnote"> for each individual footnote. So, for example, to display footnotes at the bottom in a simple list, rather than in individual boxes with "Note" headers, add the following line to your Theme stylesheet:

    ol.footnotes li {
        background: transparent !important;
        padding: 0px !important;
        border: none !important;
        margin: 0.5em 2em !important;

    The use of !important will ensure that it overrides the default styles set up by the plugin.

  • Alternatively, if you want to change the CSS class which is applied to to the footnotes list, you can do so using the class parameter on [references/]:

    This is a test.[ref]Lewis (2000).[/ref]
    [references class="compact" /]

    ... which will produce the following HTML:

    <p>This is a test.<sup>[<a href="#test-n-1" class="footnoted"
    <ol class="compact">
    <li class="footnote" id="test-n-1"><strong><sup>[1]</sup></strong> Lewis
    (2000). <a class="note-return" href="#to-test-n-1">↩</a></li

    Since the default styling is based on children of ol.footnotes, those styles will not apply, and you can apply whatever styles you wish to the class that you've created.

= Changes from version 2010.0309 to version 2010.0822


  • Added [backref name="..." /] shortcode allowing you to refer back to a note with an established name

  • Eliminated a bug which caused duplicate IDs if you tried to set up multiple sections of footnotes in the same post using repeated [references/] codes.

  • Added [references class="foo" /] syntax, allowing user to supply their own class for CSS re-styling purposes.

  • Tested for and verified compatibility up to WordPress 3.0.1 and WordPress trunk.

= Changes from version 2010.0306 to version 2010.0309


  • Eliminates a harmless but potentially annoying source of "Missing argument" warnings from PHP

Requires: 2.9 or higher
Compatible up to: 4.7.3
Last Updated: 3 months ago
Active Installs: 600+


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