Chicago citation generator

Cite websites, books, articles, ...

Chicago citation generator citation generator

What is a Chicago citation generator and how can it help you?

Getting citations and reference lists correctly done can be very confusing and time-consuming.

The good news is that our Chicago citation generator can do it automatically for you and it is FREE to use! 🎉

Not convinced yet? Here are 5 reasons why you are going to love the BibGuru Chicago citation maker:

🚀 Fast

😌 No flood of distracting ads

👌 Simple and intuitive interface

🎓 Chicago, APA, MLA, Harvard and thousands of other citation styles

🥇 Most accurate citation data

With BibGuru we have made a citation tool that truly helps students to focus on the content of their work instead of worrying about how to get their reference list correctly done.

Those days of wasting time entering data manually or losing grades on incorrect bibliographies are finally gone!

If you need to know more about Chicago citations check out our How do I cite in Chicago style? section or our detailed Chicago citation guides.

Why, when, and what do I have to cite?

The broad scientific knowledge we have today is the accomplishment of many researchers over time. To put your own contribution in context, it is important to cite the work of the researchers who influenced you.

Cited sources can provide key background information, support or dispute your thesis, or offer important definitions and data. Citing also shows that you have personally read the work.

In addition to crediting the ideas of others that you used to build your own argument, you need to provide documentation for all facts and figures that are not common knowledge.

Common knowledge is knowledge that is known by everyone, or nearly everyone, and can basically concern any subject. An example for common knowledge would be "There are seven days in a week".

The number of sources you cite in your work depends on the intent of the paper. In most cases, you will need to cite one or two of the most representative sources for each key point.

However, if you are working on a review article, the aim is to present to the readers everything that has been written on a topic, so you will need to include a more exhaustive list of citations.

What is the Chicago citation style?

Chicago book image

The Chicago format was developed by the University of Chicago Press in 1906. The first edition of the Chicago Manual of Style, a compilation of the typographical rules in force at the University of Chicago Press, had 203 pages and evolved into a comprehensive reference style guide of 1,146 pages in its seventeenth edition. It was one of the first editorial style guides published in the US and has largely impacted research methodology standardization, particularly citation style.

The style guide specifically focuses on American English and also deals with aspects of editorial practice, including grammar and usage, as well as document preparation and formatting. For citations, the Chicago style offers authors the choice between two formats:

  • The notes and bibliography system: Preferred by many working in the humanities (literature, history, the arts,..). Sources are cited in numbered footnotes or endnotes in the text and listed in a separate bibliography.
  • The author-date system: Often used in the sciences and social sciences. Sources are briefly cited in the text (usually in parentheses, author's last name and year of publication), and matched up with an entry in a reference list with full bibliographic information.

Aside from the use of numbered footnotes vs. parenthetical citations in-text, the two systems share a similar style. If you are not sure which system to use in your paper, ask your instructor. Using the correct system can have a great impact on your grade, so be sure clarify that before starting with your paper.

How to cite in the notes and bibliography system?

Instead of naming the authors in the text, which can be distracting to the reader, numbers are used to denote citations in the notes and bibliography system. These numbers in the text are linked to a full reference in footnotes or endnotes and in your bibliography. Cited publications are numbered in the order in which they are first referred to in the text. Please make sure to follow the rules below when citing in this system:

  • Check whether footnotes or endnotes are required for your work. Footnotes are found at the bottom of a page and endnotes are located at the end of a document, or sometimes at the end of a chapter or section.
  • All notes end with a full stop (in both footnotes/endnotes and bibliography).
  • In the footnotes, author names should be first name followed by last name, for example 'Gregg Levoy'. In the bibliography, author names should be last name followed by first name, for example 'Levoy, Gregg'.
  • If there are up to three authors of a source, give their names in your references in the order they are shown in the source. For four or more authors, give the name of the first author, followed by 'et al.' in the footnotes, but list all the authors in the bibliography. The first author's name is given in the bibliography as last name, first name, but other authors are written as first name last name.
  • Italicize the title of books, journals and websites. Titles of articles, chapters, unpublished sources and web pages within a website are placed within double quotation marks.
  • In your bibliography, also include sources you have read but not cited, in addition to your footnotes/endnotes.
  • The first time you cite a source give full details in the footnotes/endnotes. Subsequent entries of the same source can be abbreviated to the author's last name and the first few words of the title, plus a page number number.
  • When citing internet addresses (URLs) and Digital Object Identifiers (DOI), the URL is given in full; the accessed date is placed before the URL; and DOIs should be used if they are available as they are a permanent locator, instead of URLs. If using a DOI, you do not need to give the accessed date.
  • Formatting: The first line of footnotes should be indented by 1/2 inch (1.3cm) and subsequent lines are not indented. For the bibliography the first line of references is not indented, but the second and subsequent lines have a hanging indent of 1/2 inch (1.3cm).

The citation order for a book in the notes and bibliography system would be:

  1. Author
  2. Title (in italics)
  3. Edition (only if it is not the first edition)
  4. Place of publication: publisher, year of publication (all in round brackets in footnote, but not in bibliography)
  5. Comma then page reference in footnote


David Halliday, Robert Resnick, and Jearl Walker, Fundamentals of Physics (Hoboken, NJ: Wiley, 2013), 18.


Halliday, David, Robert Resnick, and Jearl Walker. Fundamentals of Physics. Hoboken, NJ: Wiley, 2013.

Here is the citation order and an example for a citation of a journal article:

  1. Author
  2. Title of article (in double quotation marks)
  3. Title of journal (in italics)
  4. Volume number, issue number
  5. Year of publication (in round brackets)
  6. Colon then page reference in footnote or page span in bibliography


Peter Leach, "James Paine's Design for the South Front of Kedleston Hall: Dating and Sources," Architectural History 40 (1997): 160.


Leach, Peter. "James Paine's Design for the South Front of Kedleston Hall: Dating and Sources." Architectural History 40 (1997): 159-70

How to cite in the author-date system?

As with APA or Harvard style, the Chicago author-date format uses in-text citations comprising the author's name and year of publication (and specific page reference if required). A reference list (rather than a bibliography) at the end of the work provides full bibliographical details for the sources used, listed in alphabetical order.

The major difference between the two systems in the form of the references is the position of the year of publication. In the notes and bibliography system the year comes towards the end of the reference, whereas in the author-date system it is on the second place in the reference, right after the author's name.

Axler, Sheldon. 2017. Linear Algebra Done Right. New York: Springer.

While all the specific rules of the Chicago citation style might sound very complicated, you don't need to worry about getting them wrong with BibGuru.

Use our Chicago citation generator above to create the fastest and most accurate Chicago citations possible.

If you want to know more about Chicago citations check out our Chicago citation guides to get detailed information on the various publication types.


🌞 How can the BibGuru Chicago citation generator help me?

Getting citations and reference lists correctly done can be very confusing and time-consuming. The BibGuru Chicago citation generator will help you focus on the content of your work instead of worrying about how to get their reference list correctly done.

🌚 How do I use the BibGuru Chicago citation generator?

You can create a reference in the BibGuru Chicago citation generator by entering the URL/title/doi or other identifier of your source into the search box, choose a category, click enter, and that's it. You have a 100% correct reference in Chicago style in seconds.

🎒 Can I create in-text citations with the BibGuru Chicago citation generator?

Yes, you can create in-text citations in the BibGuru Chicago citation generator. All you have to do is click on the 'Bibliography and in-text citations' button at the top of the reference list, and this will automatically create an in-text citation for every reference.

💰 Is the BibGuru Chicago citation generator free?

Yes, the BibGuru Chicago citation generator is free.

🖌️ What is the Chicago style used for?

The Chicago style is used mainly in the humanities (literature, history, the arts,..) or in the social sciences (business). While the notes and bibliography is mainly used in the humanities, the author-date system is preferably used in the social sciences.

🙌 Is the Chicago style double-spaced?

The text in your paper should be double-spaced. Footnotes and bibliographies are single-spaced, but need to have a double-space in between the entries.

📘 Does the Chicago style need a title page?

Yes, the Chicago style has guidelines for a title page. Some of the key guidelines are:

  • The title should be centered a third of the way down the page
  • Other information (your name, class, etc.) follows several lines later
  • All text is aligned in the center and double-spaced
  • No page number is included on the title page
🔢 Does the Chicago style use page numbers?

In the notes and bibliography system, you always include page numbers. In in-text citations you give a page number when you are paraphrasing or quoting directly from the text, or referring to information from a specific section.

👩‍💻 Does the Chicago style have headers?

While The Chicago Manual of Style does not include a prescribed system for formatting headings and subheads, it makes several recommendations. You can read some of them here.

Alternative to