Chapter 13. Bibliographies

Table of Contents

Bibliography entries
Bibliography database
Bibliography database catalog entry
Citing bibliographic entries
Numbered bibliography entries
Sorting a bibliography
Customizing bibliography output
Bibliography title

DocBook has a complete set of features for supporting bibliographies.

Bibliography entries

DocBook provides two approaches to entering bibliographic information, using two different elements.


Contains a set of bibliographic elements in random order that the stylesheet selects, orders, and renders. It does not permit PCDATA (ordinary text) except in its child elements.


Contains the mix of elements, text, and punctuation as you want it presented. The stylesheet formats elements but does not rearrange them. The term mixed is used here because this is mixed content of elements and text (PCDATA).

For consistency in your bibliography, it is usually best if you use one type or the other.

Each element can contain a wide variety of bibliographic elements, such as author, publisher, etc. See DocBook: The Definitive Guide for complete documentation of the bibliographic elements.

You can number entries in your bibliography, or you can mark each with an abbreviation such as [brody98]. You turn on numbering by setting the stylesheet parameter bibliography.numbered to a nonzero value. To get abbreviations, add an abbrev element as the first child of biblioentry or bibliomixed. It must be the first child element, to indicate that the text is to be presented first as a label to the bibliography entry. If numbering is not turned on, and there is not an abbrev element, then an entry's xreflabel attribute or id attribute is used as the label.