I have a rather long footnote which breaks a listing in two parts, unnecessarily. Since the listing is more important then the footnote I'd rather lake to have the footnote split.

  • Can I customize (one or all) footnotes to have a maximal length before they are continued on the next page?
  • Or can I manually split a footnote in two to get the effect?

4 Answers 4


There is a parameter \interfootnotelinepenalty, which is 100 in LaTeX. Setting it to zero (\interfootnotelinepenalty=0) or even to a negative value before the offending footnote helps to split it. Then you can set it back to 100 if you wish.

It is difficult to give a more detailed answer without an MWE.


For consistency across pages, the bigfoot package might be preferred to changing \interfootnotelinepenalty.


Meddling with \interfootnotelinepenalty (except setting it to infinite values) does not actually help with the layout of footnotes when using standard LaTeX. The reason is that TeX takes the next feasible breakpoint after the footnote anchor, and uses that for splitting the footnote. And it does not reconsider the footnote split for other breakpoints, though if the footnote split leaves the page quite too short, it might still pull in further lines from the main text. So an infinite penalty might change things, but rarely to the better. You probably can make do by combining it with a manually placed \pagebreak in the footnote.

Or you use bigfoot. bigfoot indeed plays through all combinations of breakpoints and penalties, so you can work with noninfinite penalties and get a reasonably balanced result by choosing your penalties such that a break in the listing is penalized harder than in the footnote.


Actually, you can indeed "customize (one or all) footnotes to have a maximal length before they are continued on the next page" by saying something like

\global\dimen\footins = 8cm

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