Citation, Documentation of Sources
Q. Hello, I would really appreciate it if you could please explain the difference between citations plus commentary (14.37) and substantive notes (14.39). They appear to address the same issue, but 14.37 says the source should come before the substantive notes, and 14.39 says it should come afterward, following usage in 14.38. I’m finding this confusing.
A. The two sections treat different situations. The position of a citation makes it clear whether that source is in support of something you wrote in the text (in which case the citation should be the first thing in the note, per CMOS 14.37, and your extra comments should follow the citation), or whether the source is in support of something you wrote in the note (in which case the citation should follow the comment that it supports, per 14.39). In short, the citation should follow closely whatever statement it is meant to support.