• synonyms


[foo t-noht]
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  1. an explanatory or documenting note or comment at the bottom of a page, referring to a specific part of the text on the page.
  2. a minor or tangential comment or event added or subordinated to a main statement or more important event.
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verb (used with object), foot·not·ed, foot·not·ing.
  1. to add a footnote or footnotes to (a text, statement, etc.); annotate: to footnote a dissertation.
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Origin of footnote

First recorded in 1835–45; foot + note
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018

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British Dictionary definitions for footnote


  1. 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
  2. an additional comment, as to a main statement
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  1. (tr) to supply (a page, book, etc) with footnotes
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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.

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Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper