Latex Bibliography Introduction

BibTeX is a standard tool for creating bibliography in LaTeX. It requires creating a database of references stored in a file with bib extension. Creating it is easy nowadays, because many publishers provide references to their publications in BibTeX format.

An example mylib.bib file is shown below:

@ARTICLE{Vickrey1961,
AUTHOR = {W. Vickrey},
TITLE = {Counterspeculation, auctions and sealed tenders},
JOURNAL = {Journal of Finance},
YEAR = {1961},
volume = {16},
pages = {8--37},
}
@BOOK{Golumbic2004,
AUTHOR = {M. C. Golumbic},
TITLE = {Algorithmic Graph Theory and Perfect Graphs},
PUBLISHER = {Elsevier Science},
YEAR = {2004},
edition = {2nd Edition},
}

Each entry is identified with a label given after the first opening curly bracket. This label is later used to reference the entry in the text of the main document. Here is an example that uses the above bibliography file:

\documentclass{article}
\begin{document}

To achieve incentive compatibility, the auction winner has to pay the second highest price \cite{Vickrey1961}.

A good introduction to graph algorithms can be found in \cite{Golumbic2004}.

\bibliographystyle{plain}
\bibliography{mylib}

\end{document}

Bibliography items are referenced using command \cite{label}. Command \bibliographystyle indicates what style of references should be used, while command \bibliography indicates where the bibliography items are stored. The result looks as follows:

The plain style of bibliography shown above uses numbers as references. There is a number of other bibliography styles in LaTeX. An example using apacite style is shown below:

\documentclass{article}
\usepackage{apacite}
\begin{document}

\citeA{Vickrey1961} showed that incentive compatibility is guaranteed if the auction winner has to pay the second highest price.

\bibliographystyle{apacite}
\bibliography{mylib}

\end{document}

Style apacite requires using package apacite. In addition to \cite command, it also provides (among many others) \citeA command, which allows for citations that look as follows:

Note that here the reference (Golumbic 2004) is not included in the list of references even though it exists in the bib file, since it has not been referenced to in the text.

Copyright (c) 2008, 2013 by Krzysztof Fleszar

The gadget spec URL could not be found

LaTeX supports bibliographies out of the box, either embedding the references in your document or storing them in an external file. This article explains how to manage bibliography with the environment and the BibTeX system.

Note: If you are starting from scratch it's recommended to use biblatex since that package provides localization in several languages, it's actively developed and makes bibliography management easier and more flexible.

[edit]Introduction

Standard bibliography commands in LaTeX have a similar syntax to that of lists and items.

\begin{thebibliography}{9}\bibitem{latexcompanion} Michel Goossens, Frank Mittelbach, and Alexander Samarin. \textit{The \LaTeX\ Companion}. Addison-Wesley, Reading, Massachusetts, 1993.   \bibitem{einstein} Albert Einstein. \textit{Zur Elektrodynamik bewegter K{\"o}rper}. (German) [\textit{On the electrodynamics of moving bodies}]. Annalen der Physik, 322(10):891–921, 1905.   \bibitem{knuthwebsite} Knuth: Computers and Typesetting, \\\texttt{http://www-cs-faculty.stanford.edu/\~{}uno/abcde.html}\end{thebibliography}

The environment produces a list of references; such list will be titled "References" in a article document class, and "Bibliography" in book and report document classes. A parameter inside braces, in the example, indicates the number of entries to be added; this parameter can not be greater than 99.

To create a bibliography entry the command is used. A parameter inside braces is set to label this entry and can later be used as identifier for this reference. After the closing brace the text with the name of the author, the book title, publisher and so on is entered.

ShareLaTeX provides several templates with pre-defined styles to manage bibliography. See this link

  Open an example in ShareLaTeX

[edit]Embedded system

The example presented in the introduction only contains list of references, the next example shows how to cite the entries of that list within the document.

\begin{document}   \section{First section}   This document is an example of \texttt{thebibliography} environment using in bibliography management. Three items are cited: \textit{The \LaTeX\ Companion} book \cite{latexcompanion}, the Einstein journal paper \cite{einstein}, and the Donald Knuth's website \cite{knuthwebsite}. The \LaTeX\ related items are \cite{latexcompanion,knuthwebsite}.   \medskip   \begin{thebibliography}{9}\bibitem{latexcompanion} Michel Goossens, Frank Mittelbach, and Alexander Samarin. \textit{The \LaTeX\ Companion}. Addison-Wesley, Reading, Massachusetts, 1993.   \bibitem{einstein} Albert Einstein. \textit{Zur Elektrodynamik bewegter K{\"o}rper}. (German) [\textit{On the electrodynamics of moving bodies}]. Annalen der Physik, 322(10):891–921, 1905.   \bibitem{knuthwebsite} Knuth: Computers and Typesetting, \\\texttt{http://www-cs-faculty.stanford.edu/\~{}uno/abcde.html}\end{thebibliography}   \end{document}

The command insert the number corresponding to the bibliography entry whose label is passed inside braces. For example, the output of is [2].

The information printed by the command depends on the bibliography style used. See Bibtex bibliography styles.

  Open an example in ShareLaTeX

[edit]Bibliography management with Bibtex

BibTeX is a widely used bibliography management tool in LaTeX, with BibTeX the bibliography entries are kept in a separate file and then imported into the main document.

Once the external bibliography file is imported, the command is used just as in the introductory example.

Ths document is an example of BibTeX using in bibliography management. Three items are cited: \textit{The \LaTeX\ Companion} book \cite{latexcompanion}, the Einstein journal paper \cite{einstein}, and the Donald Knuth's website \cite{knuthwebsite}. The \LaTeX\ related items are \cite{latexcompanion,knuthwebsite}.   \medskip   \bibliographystyle{unsrt}\bibliography{sample}

This uses the following commands:

Imports the BibTeX file "sample.bib" to display the bibliography. To import several .bib files just write them comma-separated inside the braces, the file extension is not necessary.
Sets the bibliography style to be used in this document. The information displayed depends on the bibliography style used, even if the entry contains information about the date, author, title, publisher, and abstract, the style used might only print the title and the author. See Bibtex bibliography styles which contains examples of the default bibliography styles in LaTeX.
This will print a number of text, depending on the bibliography style, to reference the bibliography entry whose label is passed to the command. In this case, the label produces [2].

When the main document is compiled, a .bbl file is generated from the .bib file. This is simply a .tex file reorganising the information in the .bib file in a environment, as above. On ShareLaTeX the .bbl file is stored in the cache, and you can download it from the list of other logs and files.

Note: Unicode characters are not supported on BibTeX. Also, if there are too many bibliography entries (+100) it may not work properly. See the further reading section for links to other bibliography management tools.

  Open an example of the bibtex package in ShareLaTeX

[edit]The bibliography file

Bibliographic references are usually kept in a bibliography file whose extension is .bib, this file consists of a list of records and fields. Each bibliography record holds relevant information for a single entry.

This file contains records in a special format, for instance, the first bibliographic reference is defined by:

This is the first line of a record entry, denotes the entry type and tells BibTeX that the information stored here is about an article. Besides the entry types shown in the example (, and ) there are a lot more, see the reference guide.
The label is assigned to this entry, is an identifier that can be used to refer this article within the document.
This is the first field in the bibliography entry, indicates that the author of this article is Albert Einstein. Several comma-separated fields can be added using the same syntax , for instance: title, pages, year, URL, etc. See the reference guide for a list of possible fields.

The information in this file can later be used within a LaTeX document to include these references, as shown in the next subsection.

  Open an example of the bibtex package in ShareLaTeX

[edit]Adding the bibliography in the table of contents

There are two ways of including the bibliography in the table of contents, either manually adding it or using the package tocbibind (recommended).

To add it manually just insert the next line right before the command or


for books and reports or


for articles. If you prefer to use tocbibind see the next example.

\documentclass[a4paper,10pt]{article}\usepackage[utf8]{inputenc}\usepackage[english]{babel}   \usepackage[nottoc]{tocbibind}   \begin{document}   \tableofcontents   \section{First Section} This document ...   \bibliographystyle{unsrt}\bibliography{sample}   \end{document}

Adding the line


to the preamble will print the "References" or "Bibliography" in the table of contents, depending on the document type. Be careful, it will also add other elements like the Index, Glossary and list of Listings to the table of contents. For more information see [the tocbibind package documentation].

  Open an example of the bibtex package in ShareLaTeX

[edit]Reference guide

Standard entry types

Article from a magazine or journal
A published book
A work that is printed but have no publisher or sponsoring institution
An article in a conference proceedings
A part of a book (section, chapter and so on)
A part of a book having its own title
An article in a conference proceedings
Technical documentation
A Master's thesis
Something that doesn't fit in any other type
A PhD thesis
The same as
Report published by an institution
Document not formally published, with author and title


Most common fields used in BibTeX

address annote author
booktitle chapter crossref
edition editor institution
journal key month
note number organization
pages publisher school
series title type
volume year URL
ISBN ISSN LCCN
abstract keywords price
copyright language contents

[edit]Further reading

For more information see:

@article{einstein, author = "Albert Einstein", title = "{Zur Elektrodynamik bewegter K{\"o}rper}. ({German}) [{On} the electrodynamics of moving bodies]", journal = "Annalen der Physik", volume = "322", number = "10", pages = "891--921", year = "1905", DOI = "http://dx.doi.org/10.1002/andp.19053221004" }   @book{latexcompanion, author = "Michel Goossens and Frank Mittelbach and Alexander Samarin", title = "The \LaTeX\ Companion", year = "1993", publisher = "Addison-Wesley", address = "Reading, Massachusetts" }   @misc{knuthwebsite, author = "Donald Knuth", title = "Knuth: Computers and Typesetting", url = "http://www-cs-faculty.stanford.edu/\~{}uno/abcde.html" }
\addcontentsline{toc}{chapter}{Bibliography}
\addcontentsline{toc}{section}{References}
\usepackage[nottoc]{tocbibind}

One thought on “Latex Bibliography Introduction

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *