Multi-letter initials in BibTeX#

If your bibliographic style uses initials + surname, you may encounter a problem with some transcribed names (for example, Russian ones). Consider the following example from the real world :

@article{epifanov1997,
   author = {Epifanov, S. Yu. and Vigasin, A. A.},
   title  = ...
}

Note that the « Yu » is the initial, not a complete name. However, BibTeX’s algorithms will leave you with a citation — slightly depending on the bibliographic style — that reads : « S. Y. Epifanov and A. A. Vigasin, … ». instead of the intended « S. Yu. Epifanov and A. A. Vigasin, … ».

One solution is to replace each affected initial by a command that prints the correct combination. To keep your bibliography portable, you need to add that command to your bibliography with the @preamble directive :

@preamble{ {\providecommand{\BIBYu}{Yu} } }

@article{epifanov1997,
   author   = {Epifanov, S. {\BIBYu}. and Vigasin, A. A.},
   title    = ...
}

If you have many such commands, you may want to put them in a separate file and \input that LaTeX file in a@preamble”” directive.

An alternative is to make the transcription look like an accent, from BibTeX’s point of view. For this we need a control sequence that does nothing :

@article{epifanov1997,
   author   = {Epifanov, S. {\relax Yu}. and Vigasin, A. A.},
   title    = ...
}

Like the solution by generating extra commands, this involves tedious extra typing; which of the two techniques is preferable for a given bibliography will be determined by the names in it. It should be noted that a preamble that introduces lots of odd commands is usually undesirable if the bibliography is a shared one.

« Compound » initials (for single names made up of two or more words) may be treated in the same way, so one can enter Forster’s rather complicated name as :

@article{forster2006,
  author   = {Forster, P.M. {\relax de F.} and Collins, M.},
  title    = ...

The same trick can be played if you’re entering whole names :

% !TEX noedit
...
  author   = {Epifanov, Sasha {\relax Yu}ri and
...

(though no guarantee, that either of those names is right, is offered!) However, if you’re typing the names in the « natural » (Western) way, with given names first, the trick :

...
  author   = {P.M. {\relax de F.} Forster and
...

doesn’t work — « de F. Forster » is treated as a compound family names.


Source : Multi-letter initials in BibTeX