I am using plain citation style with biblatex and was wondering about the convention of using \citeauthor (and probably \citeyear) along with \cite

While writing sometimes I do the following:

\citeauthor{johnTKDE} (\citeyear{johnTKDE}) proposed a method for ...etc

should I also use \cite at the end of the sentence when using \citeauthor ? what is the convention of using all these together? (Computer Science if the field matters).

  • Is this specific to bibtex or are you generally asking about citation conventions, i.e. whether "Author (1982) said something important" is customary or rather "Author (1982) said something important (Author 1982)"? (The former is.) Commented Oct 17, 2016 at 8:37
  • @henning I was just typing that very question. To me it seems to be the latter, and the question is about style, rather than LaTeX/BibTeX. With that in mind, what style is used by the venue (be that a journal, conference, etc.) where it is intended that this citation will appear?
    – Ian_Fin
    Commented Oct 17, 2016 at 8:40
  • @henning my question is when you have different citation style i.e. numbering [1] . I want to say author_last name proposed a method ...etc. Should I include [1] at the end of the sentence as well. or just author_last_name suffice ? Sorry for the confusion.
    – seteropere
    Commented Oct 17, 2016 at 20:26
  • 1
    If the system normally used in the journal is like in this sentence[1]. ...you would still typically write... Johnson et al. [1] proposed a method... with no additional citation at the end.
    – Bryan Krause
    Commented Oct 20, 2016 at 22:23

1 Answer 1


I don't think there is something like a general convention for this, aside from the usual rule of being consistent. So follow your personal/conference/journal/university/whatever style.

If that style dictates to use numbered references such as [1], always include this. Even if, like in your example, you start one of your sentences with the author name (and year). Note that (as @Ian_Fin mentions in the comments) the year is usually omitted when using an author name with number styled references.

  • 1
    I generally agree with this, although I will say that where I've seen journals using that number citation style, and an author is explicitly mentioned in the text, the year is typically omitted
    – Ian_Fin
    Commented Oct 18, 2016 at 13:44
  • @Ian_Fin Good point, I have tried to clarify this in the answer.
    – J. Doe
    Commented Oct 18, 2016 at 13:51
  • I've also come across the number citation style where the numbers are used grammatically as subjects or objects of the sentence without ever spelling out the name of the author. "According to [21], this issue can safely be ignored." Commented Oct 18, 2016 at 13:59

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