- an explanatory or documenting note or comment at the bottom of a page, referring to a specific part of the text on the page.
- a minor or tangential comment or event added or subordinated to a main statement or more important event.
- to add a footnote or footnotes to (a text, statement, etc.); annotate: to footnote a dissertation.
Origin of footnote
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018
Examples from the Web for footnote
When I wrote the novel about the Gulag, House of Meetings, the name Stalin only appears in a footnote very early on.Martin Amis Talks About Nazis, Novels, and Cute Babies
Ronald K. Fried
October 9, 2014
By the time "decisions need to be made" about 2016, Christie said, "I think this will be a footnote."Chris Christie’s YOLO Attitude for 2016
May 15, 2014
To put things into perspective, had Gore won his home state, Florida would have been relegated to a footnote.Memo to the 2016 GOP: Winning Your Home State Matters
May 5, 2014
A footnote toward the end of the book gives a short, wonderful history of human adornment, but the discussion remains didactic.Objectively Speaking: Stephanie LaCava’s ‘An Extraordinary Theory of Objects’
December 13, 2012
He happened to have a copy of the 2009 paperback at hand, glanced through it, and again overlooked the footnote.Meet The Man Who Wrongly Accused Fareed Zakaria of Plagiarism
August 16, 2012
Transcriber's note: No footnote text was found for this footnote marker.Changing Winds</p>
St. John G. Ervine
Well, they ought to print the thing, if only as a footnote to your drawings, Sis.Audrey Craven
Transcriber's note:No anchor for this footnote could be found on this page.
Mr. Logan writes to the papers for an explanation which is given in a footnote.Ireland as It Is
Robert John Buckley (AKA R.J.B.)
The record of what she did is but a footnote to the page of what she suffered.The Heart of Thunder Mountain
Edfrid A. Bingham
- a note printed at the bottom of a page, to which attention is drawn by means of a reference mark in the body of the text
- an additional comment, as to a main statement
- (tr) to supply (a page, book, etc) with footnotes
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition © William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012
Word Origin and History for footnote
Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper