I'm using Sharelatex to work on my thesis, and I want to use the natbib package and authordate3 style for my bibliography. For some reason, when referencing a bibliography entry with multiple authors, I get a space between "et al." and the year.

Here's a minimal example:


    author          = "Tom Jones and
                        Jack Smith and
                        John Doe",
    title           = "Wonderful Book",
    year            = "1999"




In Sharelatex, this gives:

ugly space

Now, I've looked around, but the only solution that seems to work is by manipulating the authordate3.bst file (as suggested here), which I obviously don't have access to, since I don't have LaTeX installed on my machine.

I've also tried changing the punctuation separation between the author and the year to include \unskip using \setcitestyle{aysep={\unskip,}}, but that unfortunately didn't work. Simply adding a negative space (such as using \setcitestyle{aysep={\kern-ex1,}}) fixes the space for multiple references but places the comma on top of the author's name for single references.

  • 4
    Welcome to TeX.SX! Nice MWE!
    – egreg
    Feb 19, 2015 at 11:22
  • 1
    Note that authordate3.bst is not a good style for natbib.
    – egreg
    Feb 19, 2015 at 11:34
  • I can't reproduce that behavior. I don't have that space. As a side note note that it should be \bibliography{biblio} and not \bibliography{biblio.bib} Feb 19, 2015 at 11:39
  • @karlkoeller For me, the space is there. I can reproduce the problem.
    – yo'
    Feb 19, 2015 at 11:41
  • 4
    This should be reported as a bug to Nelson Beebe, the upstream authordate package appears to have been fixed but that has not propagated to the version in his collection which is used in texlive. Feb 19, 2015 at 13:51

1 Answer 1


This is somewhat of a home cooked solution, but I opened the authordate3.bst file in my text editor and replaced the three occurrence of {\em et~al.\ } with {\em et~al.}. My authordate3.bst was located here /usr/local/texlive/2014/texmf-dist/bibtex/bst/beebe/authordate3.bst.

After I did that I ran your code again and all was good (I might have created some horrible problem I am not aware of?).

Below example was produced with the code Martim provided above.

same code as above!

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