The Captain Shall Remain Unknown

I had never thought about the importance of footnotes, until I had to write my first paper in Chicago style. As a college student, I was only familiar with MLA and APA; but, one day I was asked to write a paper in Chicago style -a style that I was not acquainted with. Something very particular to this form of writing is footnotes or endnotes. I’ve gotten used to them. They are better than being interrupted by a really long parenthetical reference in the middle of your paragraph. In all books I read, I look for the numbers next to my words, and then look for the appropriate footnote so that I can know what the author is  talking about. However, footnotes vary from author to author, and some footnotes are more helpful than others. Lately, I’ve had to read Lewis’ scholarly work and I’ve found that his footnotes are not very elaborate. They merely take me to the main source. Yesterday, while reading one of Lewis’ book, I came across this thing called The Captain. The text was in italics, and the element was part of a comparison. Next to the text, there was a footnote number. When my eyes scrolled down to the bottom of the page, I realized that it did not explain what The Captain was. So, I turned to one of my best reading budddies: Google. Then, I remembered that the web was vast; therefore, I couldn’t get the answers that I wanted. From Google, I got references to soccer team captains, to Captain America (apparently there was also a Captain Britain), to captains from the army, etc. I’ve kept searching, but my search is futile. Unless I can bring Lewis out of his grave and ask him what he meant, the identity of The Captain shall remain unknown. Perhaps I could just ask someone who has read the book before: my professor.

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