I would like to compile a thesis with the tufte-book class. Is tufte-book supposed to be compatible with biblatex? This question suggests that it's possible? Maybe something changed since?

Here's a MWE:

\usepackage[style=verbose, autocite=footnote, backend=biber]{biblatex}


Hello World.


The error is:

! Package biblatex Error: Incompatible package 'natbib'.

See the biblatex package documentation for explanation.
Type  H <return>  for immediate help.

l.202 \blx@packageincompatibility


I tried using both Tectonic and pdflatex which the authors of tufte-book recommend in their README. This GitHub issue of tufte-latex suggests that they wish to switch to biblatex from natbib?

1 Answer 1


The tufte-latex classes load natbib by default and natbib is completely incompatible with biblatex (because natbib is based on the classical BibTeX and core-LaTeX approach to citations and bibliographies while biblatex completely reimplements citation and bibliography handling).

If you load tufte-book with the option nobib, it will not load natbib and you can use biblatex. (Note that both the question and answer in Can I use biblatex with Tufte classes? use the nobib option, but don't discuss its relevance explicitly.)

\usepackage[style=verbose, autocite=footnote, backend=biber]{biblatex}

Hello World.\autocite{sigfridsson}

Tufte with citation in margin

Note that with biblatex you need to compile your document with Biber and not with BibTeX (Biblatex with Biber: Configuring my editor to avoid undefined citations might be helpful).

  • Thanks! I tried now to use biditufte-book and I used the nobib option and I still get the same errors as before. Mar 16, 2021 at 17:17
  • 1
    @DoronBehar biditufte-book (as included in bidi) appears to be based on an ancient version of tufte-latex (from before 2011/06/18) that doesn't support the noibid option.
    – moewe
    Mar 16, 2021 at 17:20
  • @DoronBehar That said, I can't even get \documentclass{biditufte-book} \begin{document}Hello World\end{document} to compile without error with a current LaTeX kernel, so you may have other problems here.
    – moewe
    Mar 16, 2021 at 17:28

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