I'm trying to cite to a chapter of a in the .bib file specified book. How could I change my own cite style to change the default "p. 10" to a "ch. 10" (I only have to cite chapters)?


DIV = 12
\usepackage[style=alphabetic, autocite=footnote]{biblatex}


url = {http://test.test},
urldate = {2018-12-15},
title = {Test Bib},
label = {TB}

This is the first example\mycite[10]{test}.\\


For compiling I'm using LuaLaTex,

Best, cortesis

  • 2
    You can put anything in the postnote. So one option is just to use \mycite[ch.~10]{test} – David Purton Dec 19 '18 at 9:37
  • 4
    If this particular book is cited with chapters all the time, you may want to add pagination = {chapter}, to the bib entry to automate this, so you can just type \cite[10]{foo} to get "ch. 10". – moewe Dec 19 '18 at 9:38
  • @moewe Or you could define a new command to cite with a chapter if you want to alternate between citing with a chapter and citing with a page. – Karlo Dec 19 '18 at 9:43
  • @moewe this is the solution to what I was trying, thanks. If you could post it as an answer, I would be pleased – cortesis Dec 19 '18 at 9:47
  • Another option is to use a source map to set the pagination to chapter for the entries you will cite with a chapter. – David Purton Dec 19 '18 at 9:52

The pagination field can be used to change the pagination type of an entry. You can try

  url        = {http://test.test},
  urldate    = {2018-12-15},
  title      = {Test Bib},
  label      = {TB},
  pagination = {chapter},

to obtain

Test Bib. url: http://test.test (visited on 12/15/2018) [TB], chap. 10.

from \mycite[10]{test} if you want to cite test with chapters all (or at least most of) the time.

For one-off changes, you can just write


If you want to change the default pagination from page to chapter, you can either redefine the internal command \blx@imc@mkpageprefix

             Unknown pagination type '\strfield{#1}'}}}}%

or set up a Biber sourcemap to add pagination = {chapter}, to all entries without an explicit pagination field.

  \maps[datatype=bibtex, overwrite=false]{
      \step[fieldset=pagination, fieldvalue={chapter}]

There is a similar field called bookpagination for the prefixes/suffixes of the pages and pagetotal fields in the bibliography.

  • One learns something everyday. I didn't know that. – gusbrs Dec 19 '18 at 10:05
  • In the case of changing the defaults, perhaps mentioning the postnote formatting directive might be another nice third idea. – gusbrs Dec 19 '18 at 10:12
  • @gusbrs Mhhh yes, although I don't really have an idea for a redefined postnote format in this instance (at least if I want to retain the workings of the pagination field for all other entries). If you have a nice idea I'd love to hear it though. – moewe Dec 19 '18 at 10:29
  • Actually, I had thought of something simple like \DeclareFieldFormat{postnote}{\iffieldint{#1}{\bibstring{chapter}~#1}{#1}}. But, yes, you are right. Simple as it is, it is an inferior solution. – gusbrs Dec 19 '18 at 11:12

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