[ foo t-noht ]
/ ˈfʊtˌnoʊt /


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.

verb (used with object), foot·not·ed, foot·not·ing.

to add a footnote or footnotes to (a text, statement, etc.); annotate: to footnote a dissertation.

Nearby words

  1. footloose,
  2. footloose and fancy-free,
  3. footman,
  4. footmark,
  5. footmen's gallery,
  6. footpace,
  7. footpad,
  8. footpath,
  9. footplate,
  10. footprint

Origin of footnote

First recorded in 1835–45; foot + note Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

Examples from the Web for footnote

British Dictionary definitions for footnote


/ (ˈfʊtˌnəʊt) /


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



1841, from foot (n.) + note (n.). So called from its original position at the foot of a page. Also sometimes formerly Bottom note. As a verb, from 1864. Related: Footnoted; footnoting.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper