# ambiguous multiple citations with same authors (first name either full or initials)

Here is minimal example (edited after this)--

\documentclass{article}
\usepackage[style=authoryear-comp,natbib,
uniquename=false,
uniquelist=minyear,
backend=bibtex]{biblatex}
\addbibresource{\jobname.bib}
\begin{filecontents}{\jobname.bib}
@article{one,
author = "Last, F.",
title = {Title},
journal = {A Journal},
year = {2011},
}
@article{two,
author = "Last, F.",
title = {Title2},
journal = {B Journal},
year = {2011},
}
@article{three,
author = "Last, First",
title = {Title3},
journal = {C Journal},
year = {2013},
}
\end{filecontents}

\begin{document}

\cite{one,two,three}

\printbibliography

\end{document}


Here is the result --

Last, 2013; Last 2011a,b

However, I would like to have it something like --

Last, 2011a,b, 2013

Which I could get if I have all author names identical (including first and last names). I can't really modify the bib entry as long as it is the last option.

Seeing authoryear-comp will also set

autocite=inline, labeldate=true, uniquename=full, uniquelist=true


So, I have already tried different settings using uniquename and uniquelist of biblatex package (documentation), but could not get the desired result. There are some examples given in sec. 4.11.4 of the documentation but it is becoming more ambiguous to me. Can someone give me correct settings and make it little bit Disambiguious?

• Are these all really Mr/Ms First Last? If so, try adding sortname = {Last, First},. This should produce your desired output. But I cannot imagine how or why BibTeX should produce Last, 2013; Last, 2011a,b, 2012 given the intput you have. There is no reason to treat author "Last" the same as author "First Last" ... and, more importantly, (in English at least) doing so seems to add to the confusion of an already confusing set of references. My advice: if they are all the same person, fix your .bib entries; if they aren't all the same person, do not let BibTeX treat them as the same.
– jon
Jul 3 '16 at 23:10
• Do you mean to use sortname=... in each bib item. If so, I can't really do that, I have a big database and I can't change the each entry. But, you point is valid about Last. My main argument is between Last First and Last F. so I have modified the example. Jul 4 '16 at 6:33
• oh yeah, a typo, thanks. But this does not fix the problem. Jul 4 '16 at 6:46
• Can you use Biber instead of BibTeX? With Biber the whole name disambiguation feature is greatly improved. BibTeX has the status of "legacy backend" with limited support for the cool features. Jul 4 '16 at 6:47
• Re the typo: Of course not, but I just wanted to be sure I got the problem. Jul 4 '16 at 6:47

## 1 Answer

First of all, for biblatex Last, F. and Last, First are two different people. It cannot know that they are the same person (if they are at all). So for the most part it will try to treat them separately.

If you load authoryear-comp without modifications to the uniquename/uniquelist options

\usepackage[style=authoryear-comp,backend=biber]{biblatex}


you get

F. Last 2011a,b; First Last 2013

That is, biblatex tries to disambiguate between the two in the citation output.

In your MWE you have uniquename=false, and with

\usepackage[style=authoryear-comp,uniquename=false,backend=biber]{biblatex}


you don't get the disambiguation output in the citations. For all other purposes, however, the two authors are still different, though. So the two citations are not compressed.

You can add a shortauthor field to the entries

@article{one,
author = "Last, F.",
shortauthor = {Last, First},
title = {Title},
journal = {A Journal},
year = {2011},
}
@article{two,
author = "Last, F.",
shortauthor = {Last, First},
title = {Title2},
journal = {B Journal},
year = {2011},
}
@article{three,
author = "Last, First",
shortauthor = {Last, First},
title = {Title3},
journal = {C Journal},
year = {2013},
}


Then the citation will be compressed as you expected, because for biblatex the author is the same in all works (at least in citations).

(The same should more or less hold for BibTeX as well, though some of its functionality is limited.)

• ok, that means, I can't really force bibtex to assume Last, F. and Last, First same without using sortauthor in bib entries. At least, answer clarified my doubts thus accepted. Jul 4 '16 at 7:06
• A common way of approaching this with biber is to use a sourcemap to normalise the name variants before biblatex even sees them - there are some examples in the biblatex manual.
– PLK
Jul 4 '16 at 22:41