Please Note: This article is written for users of the following Microsoft Word versions: 97, 2000, 2002, and 2003. If you are using a later version (Word 2007 or later), this tip may not work for you. For a version of this tip written specifically for later versions of Word, click here: Condensing Figure Caption References.

Condensing Figure Caption References

by Allen Wyatt
(last updated July 16, 2016)

Chris wrote about problems having Word correctly refer to ranges of captions in his reports. For instance, referencing "Figures 1 to 6" instead of "Figure 1 to Figure 6," as is easily accomplished through the use of cross references. It seems that such proper wording is possible, if the following steps are followed:

  1. Position your insertion point where you want the range reference to occur.
  2. Type the words 'Referenced in Figures ' (don't forget the trailing space).
  3. Insert a cross-reference to the first figure in the range, making sure the "Only label and number" option is selected.
  4. Type the word 'to' followed by a cross-reference to the last figure in the range. (Again, make sure the "Only label and number" option is selected.) Your document will look something like this:
Referenced in Figures Figure 1 to Figure 6
  • Select the 'Figure 1' field and press Ctrl+F9. Word creates a new field with the 'Figure 1' REF field inside it, as follows:
  • Referenced in Figures { Figure 1 } to Figure 6
    
    1. Inside the new field, to the left of the 'Figure 1' embedded field, type 'QUOTE ' (make sure you include the space).
    2. Inside your new field code, insert ' \* "Arabic" ' between the embedded 'Figure 1' field and before the closing brace. Again, note the spaces.
    3. Repeat steps 5 to 7 for the other cross-reference.
    4. If you press Alt+F9 to show field codes, your document should look something like this:
    Referenced in Figures { QUOTE {REF _Ref111111 \h } \* "Arabic" } to { QUOTE {REF _Ref22222 \h } \* "Arabic" }
    
  • Press Alt+F9 to switch back to viewing field results, then select the two new fields and press F9 to update them. The result should be something like this:
  • Referenced in Figures 1 to 6
    

    The trick is to use the QUOTE field along with the \* "Arabic" formatting switch. The QUOTE field de-references the REF field, making it seem as if it were simple text. The Arabic format tells Word to display the text in Arabic numerals. Serendipitously, Word ignores non-numeric characters when it applies the Arabic switch.

    WordTips is your source for cost-effective Microsoft Word training. (Microsoft Word is the most popular word processing software in the world.) This tip (1438) applies to Microsoft Word 97, 2000, 2002, and 2003. You can find a version of this tip for the ribbon interface of Word (Word 2007 and later) here: Condensing Figure Caption References.

    Author Bio

    Allen Wyatt

    With more than 50 non-fiction books and numerous magazine articles to his credit, Allen Wyatt is an internationally recognized author. He  is president of Sharon Parq Associates, a computer and publishing services company. ...

    MORE FROM ALLEN

    Setting a Default Date Format

    Enter a date into a cell, and Excel allows you to format that date in a variety of ways. Don't see the date format you want? ...

    Discover More

    Counting the Instances of a Text String

    Sometimes it is helpful to know how often a particular phrase appears within a document. If you need to know such a count, ...

    Discover More

    Turning Off Line Numbering

    Need to have line numbering turned off for a paragraph or two? You can accomplish the task by following these steps.

    Discover More

    The First and Last Word on Word! Bestselling For Dummies author Dan Gookin puts his usual fun and friendly candor back to work to show you how to navigate Word 2013. Spend more time working and less time trying to figure it all out! Check out Word 2013 For Dummies today!

    MORE WORDTIPS (MENU)

    Cross-Referencing to Line Numbers

    Wouldn't it be nice to be able to do cross-referencing to line numbers within a document? Word doesn't have a built in way to ...

    Discover More

    Inserting a Cross-Reference to Text

    Cross-referencing is a great feature of Word that allows you to add references to text in various places of your document. ...

    Discover More

    Controlling the Format of Cross-References

    When you use fields to add cross-references to tables or figures, Word normally takes care of formatting the words used in ...

    Discover More
    Subscribe

    FREE SERVICE: Get tips like this every week in WordTips, a free productivity newsletter. Enter your address and click "Subscribe."

    View most recent newsletter.

    Comments for this tip:

    If you would like to add an image to your comment (not an avatar, but an image to help in making the point of your comment), include the characters [{fig}] in your comment text. You’ll be prompted to upload your image when you submit the comment. Images larger than 600px wide or 1000px tall will be reduced. Up to three images may be included in a comment. All images are subject to review. Commenting privileges may be curtailed if inappropriate images are posted.

    What is seven minus 6?

    There are currently no comments for this tip. (Be the first to leave your comment—just use the simple form above!)


    Newest Tips
    Subscribe

    FREE SERVICE: Get tips like this every week in WordTips, a free productivity newsletter. Enter your address and click "Subscribe."

    (Your e-mail address is not shared with anyone, ever.)

    View the most recent newsletter.

    Links and Sharing
    Share