Can I make a footnote for a footnote? (reledmac)

I would like to ask, how can I make a footnote in a footnote? Like when the footnote is explaining the main text, and then the second footnote is explaining the footnote.

Here is my mini example:

\documentclass[11pt,twoside,a4paper]{article}

\usepackage{setspace}
\usepackage[series={A,B},nocritical,noend,noeledsec]{reledmac}
\usepackage{reledpar}
\usepackage{polyglossia}

\setmainlanguage{arabic}

\newcommand{\فا}[1]{\footnoteA{#1}}
\renewcommand*{\thefootnoteA}{\alph{footnoteA}}
\newcommand{\فب}[1]{\footnoteB{#1}}
\renewcommand*{\thefootnoteB}{\arabic{footnoteB}}

\arrangementX[A]{paragraph}
\bhookgroupX[A]{\RTL}

\arrangementX[B]{paragraph}
\bhookgroupX[B]{\RTL}

\makeatletter
\def\right@footnoterule{%
\kern-3\p@
\hbox to \columnwidth{\hskip .6\columnwidth \leaders\hrule \@height .4\p@\hfill}
\kern2.6\p@}
\def\left@footnoterule{\kern-3\p@
\hrule \@width 1\columnwidth \@height .4\p@ \kern 2.6\p@}

\afterruleX[A]{2pt}
\renewcommand{\footnoteruleA}{\hrule width \textwidth}
\afterruleX[B]{2pt}
\renewcommand{\footnoteruleB}{\hrule width \textwidth}

\renewcommand{\bodyfootmarkA}{\hspace{1pt}\textsuperscript{)\hspace{1pt}\@thefnmarkA\hspace{1pt}(}}
\renewcommand{\bodyfootmarkB}{\hspace{1pt}\textsuperscript{)\hspace{1pt}\@thefnmarkB\hspace{1pt}(}}

\renewcommand{\footfootmarkA}{\textsuperscript{)\hspace{1pt}\@thefnmarkA\hspace{1pt}(}\hspace{1ex}}
\renewcommand{\footfootmarkB}{\textsuperscript{)\hspace{1pt}\@thefnmarkB\hspace{1pt}(}\hspace{1ex}}

\usepackage{perpage}
\MakePerPage{footnoteA@typeset}
\MakePerPage{footnoteB@typeset}

\lineation*{page}

\sloppy
\begin{document}

فرض الوضوء\فا{- قوله \{فرض الوضوء\}: قال الله تعالى  يَا أَيُّهَا الَّذِينَ آمَنُواْ إِذَا قُمْتُمْ إِلَى الصَّلاةِ فَاغْسِلُواْ وُجُوهَكُمْ وَأَيْدِيَكُمْ إِلَى الْمَرَافِقِ وَامْسَحُواْ بِرُؤُوسِكُمْ وَأَرْجُلَكُمْ إِلَى الْكَعْبَيْنِ. ففرض الطهارة غسل العضاء الثلاثة ومسح الرأس.}: غسل الوجه واليدين ومسح ربع الرأس وغسل الرجلين.\فب{سورة المائدة: ٦.}

\end{document}


So this is now fully working and looks very fine as well, but I would like to have the footnote from \فب within the footnote \فا

So it should look like this:

\documentclass[11pt,twoside,a4paper]{article}

\usepackage{setspace}
\usepackage[series={A,B},nocritical,noend,noeledsec]{reledmac}
\usepackage{reledpar}
\usepackage{polyglossia}

\setmainlanguage{arabic}

\newcommand{\فا}[1]{\footnoteA{#1}}
\renewcommand*{\thefootnoteA}{\alph{footnoteA}}
\newcommand{\فب}[1]{\footnoteB{#1}}
\renewcommand*{\thefootnoteB}{\arabic{footnoteB}}

\arrangementX[A]{paragraph}
\bhookgroupX[A]{\RTL}

\arrangementX[B]{paragraph}
\bhookgroupX[B]{\RTL}

\makeatletter
\def\right@footnoterule{%
\kern-3\p@
\hbox to \columnwidth{\hskip .6\columnwidth \leaders\hrule \@height .4\p@\hfill}
\kern2.6\p@}
\def\left@footnoterule{\kern-3\p@
\hrule \@width 1\columnwidth \@height .4\p@ \kern 2.6\p@}

\afterruleX[A]{2pt}
\renewcommand{\footnoteruleA}{\hrule width \textwidth}
\afterruleX[B]{2pt}
\renewcommand{\footnoteruleB}{\hrule width \textwidth}

\renewcommand{\bodyfootmarkA}{\hspace{1pt}\textsuperscript{)\hspace{1pt}\@thefnmarkA\hspace{1pt}(}}
\renewcommand{\bodyfootmarkB}{\hspace{1pt}\textsuperscript{)\hspace{1pt}\@thefnmarkB\hspace{1pt}(}}

\renewcommand{\footfootmarkA}{\textsuperscript{)\hspace{1pt}\@thefnmarkA\hspace{1pt}(}\hspace{1ex}}
\renewcommand{\footfootmarkB}{\textsuperscript{)\hspace{1pt}\@thefnmarkB\hspace{1pt}(}\hspace{1ex}}

\usepackage{perpage}
\MakePerPage{footnoteA@typeset}
\MakePerPage{footnoteB@typeset}

\lineation*{page}

\sloppy
\begin{document}

فرض الوضوء\فا{- قوله \{فرض الوضوء\}: قال الله تعالى  يَا أَيُّهَا الَّذِينَ آمَنُواْ إِذَا قُمْتُمْ إِلَى الصَّلاةِ فَاغْسِلُواْ وُجُوهَكُمْ وَأَيْدِيَكُمْ إِلَى الْمَرَافِقِ وَامْسَحُواْ بِرُؤُوسِكُمْ وَأَرْجُلَكُمْ إِلَى الْكَعْبَيْنِ.\فب{سورة المائدة: ٦.} ففرض الطهارة غسل العضاء الثلاثة ومسح الرأس.}: غسل الوجه واليدين ومسح ربع الرأس وغسل الرجلين.

\end{document}


How can I make it work? Can please someone help me?

The solution with footnotemark and \footnotetext is working, but I don't like it, as it looks confusing. Also I am aware of \bigfoot, but I would like to use \reledmac, because it works really fine and easy with arabic texts.

• I don't know if there is a native reledmac solution, so I won't post an answer, but there are packages like manyfoot and bigfoot. At least with bigfoot it appears possible to have footnotes within footnotes: gist.github.com/moewew/014de062bbb00fe3b5f90a50bd534417. There may be (quite) some rough edges there, but at least in principle footnotes in footnotes are not completely impossible. Jul 23 '20 at 19:18
• I doubt very much that a footnote within another footnote would be considered good style. The second footnote will be placed just after the first one, so you can equally well continue writing. Additionally, as per the Chicago Style Guide and others, the numbers should appear in sequential order in the text. If you place a footnote in a footnote, the numbers in the text will be 1 followed by 3, since number 2 will be hidden in the footnotes Jul 24 '20 at 7:10
• there is no native solution on reledmac. Jul 24 '20 at 8:23

Pretty much, you can't. The \footnotemark\footnotetext solution is the only way to make it work.

If you're up for doing programming work and are willing to deal with a potentially fragile solution, you might be able to make it work (or perhaps someone will care to do the work on this outline and create a working prototype)

Th idea would be that inside of a footnote, \footnote is redefined to

• Output the footnotemark
• Store the footnote text in a macro (you'll need to handle the case where there are multiple footnotes, also remember that you're operating inside a group so you need to make it a global definition)
• When the footnote is output, the stored footnote text(s) are output via \footnotetext (one for each footnote text).

That said, I'm not entirely sure that footnotes within footnotes are very reader friendly. Most style guides explicitly prohibit them. I think maybe David Foster Wallace has done this in some of his work, but that's done in a spirit of irony.

• Thank you very much for your answer. I have no programming skills, so i actually don't know, how to realize your idea, but its quite helpful, thanks for that. Footnotes within Footnotes were very normal in middle age. In german its called "Superkommentar", they would make it for texts from Aristotle, Averroes or for commentaries on Bible and Koran etc. So its needed to make e.g. critical editions. But maybe there are other possibilities, that I am not aware of? Jul 23 '20 at 17:35