I want to have the theorem names appear in the margin. I've tried using the margin notes to do this but I was unable to do so.

Here is a picture of what I am trying to do. The top line is how the theorem environment works by default, below is what I would like. enter image description here

Here is I what i tried to do, altough I must admit I don't have a good understanding of how to do something like this


  • 1
    Welcome to TeX SX! Could you post a compilable code of what you've tried?
    – Bernard
    Commented Nov 29, 2019 at 20:13
  • by compilable do you mean to include all the packages and the preable I've used?
    – Emily
    Commented Nov 29, 2019 at 20:26
  • Not all, but the relevant packages and a preamble, so I can compile immediately to try to see what happens.
    – Bernard
    Commented Nov 29, 2019 at 20:28
  • \newenivorment{margintheorem}[#2]{ is wrong. It should be something like \newenivorment{margintheorem}[2]{ or so.
    – user194703
    Commented Nov 29, 2019 at 21:11
  • 1
    @Schrödinger'scat: Oh, now I understand (perhaps): perhaps you interpreted my comment as a remark addressed to you! No, my advice to post only actual code was meant for the OP!
    – GuM
    Commented Nov 29, 2019 at 23:04

2 Answers 2


You can define indirectly the theorem environment:





This theorem has no attribution.

\begin{theorem}[theorem name]
This theorem has a name.


enter image description here


Your question lacks some important details, and in particular you do not specify whether or not you are using a particular package to define your “theorem-like” environments. I’ll assume that you are using amsthm.

The following solution hacks directly into amsthm's definition of the \@begintheorem command, and so applies automatically to all kinds of “theorem-like” environment (propositions, lemmas, definitions…). It is based on the use of the \marginpar command from the LaTeX kernel: this makes things a bit more complicated, because this command must be issued “in outer paragraph mode”. Indeed, I wrote the code exactly with the intent of showing that a solution based on the original \marginpar command was possible.

% My standard header for TeX.SX answers:
\documentclass[a4paper]{article} % To avoid confusion, let us explicitly 
                                 % declare the paper format.

\usepackage[T1]{fontenc}         % Not always necessary, but recommended.
% End of standard header.  What follows pertains to the problem at hand.

% \usepackage{amsmath} % not essential, but you probably want it too
\usepackage{etoolbox} % for "\patchcmd"/"\pretocmd"

%%%%%%%% BEGIN WIZARDRY %%%%%%%%


\patchcmd{\@begintheorem}{% search for:
}{% replace with:
}{% execute if succeeded:
    \wlog{>>> 1st patch succeeded.}
}{% execute if failed:
    \wlog{>>> 1st patch FAILED!}
\pretocmd{\@begintheorem}{% prepended code:
}{% execute if succeeded:
    \wlog{>>> 2nd patch succeeded.}
}{% execute if failed:
    \wlog{>>> 2nd patch FAILED!}

    \begingroup \setbox\z@ \lastbox \endgroup
\dth@everypar = \expandafter {%
    \expandafter \@thm@marginal@note@helper
    \the \dth@everypar


%%%%%%%%  END WIZARDRY  %%%%%%%%

        [\footnotesize\raggedleft  #1]%
        {\footnotesize\raggedright #1}%
\reversemarginpar % ?

\newtheorem{lemma}  {Lemma}


This text comes before the first definition.

\begin{defin}[Important definition]
    A definition is \textbf{important} if and only if it is not

And, of course:

    An \textbf{unimportant} definition is one that is not important.

Now a theorem:

\begin{theorem}[Important Theorem]
    All theorems are important, but some theorems are more important 
    than others.

The proof rests on the following

\begin{lemma}[Important lemma]
    Not all theorems (or lemmas) are equally important.

An unimportant theorem:

    Blah blah blah\ldots

And an unimportant lemma:

    Blah blah blah\ldots

Here is a little more text.


Note the old-fashioned, “vintage” code, and its use of \expandafter… ;-)

The output:

Output of the code

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