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I have to typeset a text with several widows and lots of footnotes. The editor told me to leave an additional blank line between the main text and the footnotes and to use this space to print the widows on the preceding page. I managed to add the required space using \addtolength{\skip\footins}{\baselineskip}. But now I have to make LaTeX to use this space (or manually print the respective lines on it). I would be grateful for any advice.

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What happens if you use \widowpenalty=9999 or \widowpenalty=10000? It won't do what you request, but I'd expect that you get rid of the widows. You should leave out the \addtolength when you try it. –  Hendrik Vogt Mar 8 '13 at 16:41
    
Well I know there are several good ways to get rid of the widows. The problem is that I have to do it in the way that the editor requires (I already tried to talk him out of it). So the problem is not to get rid of the widows but to get rid of them the way I described above. –  tobias Mar 8 '13 at 17:25

1 Answer 1

To do this, I use both the \widowpenalty as well as placing \vfill glue into a redefinition of \footnoterule.

\documentclass{article}
\usepackage{lipsum}
\let\svfootnoterule\footnoterule
\renewcommand\footnoterule{\vfill\svfootnoterule}
\widowpenalty=9999
\begin{document}
\lipsum[1-3]
This is a test\footnote{My footnote}
\lipsum[3]
a\\b\\c\\d\\e

\lipsum[5]
\clearpage
\lipsum[1-3]
This is a test\footnote{My footnote}
\lipsum[3]
a\\b\\c\\d\\e\\f

\lipsum[5]
\end{document}

enter image description here

And now, for the second image, here is the same text, with one extra line "f" below "e", that would otherwise cause a widow. I have confirmed that footnote is at the same vertical space on the page in both instances.

enter image description here

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