[Tex/LaTex] \textcite in Biblatex not working as expected


I suppose this is a bug in Biblatex.


\usepackage[a4paper, margin=2.5cm]{geometry}
\usepackage[style=authoryear-comp, sorting=nyt, giveninits=true, mincitenames=1, maxcitenames=2, maxbibnames=10, uniquelist=minyear, backend=biber]{biblatex}


    \parencite[see table 4.1 in][for density functions of all one-parameter Archimedean families]{nelsen2006introduction}

    \textcite[see table 4.1 in][for density functions of all one-parameter Archimedean families]{nelsen2006introduction}


Actual Output:

Actual output from Biblatex

Expected Output:

Expected output from Biblatex

My versions are:

  • TeX version: 3.14159265 (TeX Live 2018)
  • LuaTeX version: 1.07.0 (TeX Live 2018) (I am compiling using LuaLaTeX)
  • Biblatex version: 3.11
  • biber version: 2.11

Best Answer

This is expected behaviour.

The biblatex documentation describes \textcite as (pp. 97-98, §3.8.2 Style-specific Commands)

These citation commands are provided by all styles that come with this package. They are intended for use in the flow of text, replacing the subject of a sentence. They print the authors or editors followed by a citation label which is enclosed in parentheses. Depending on the citation style, the label may be a number, the year of publication, an abridged version of the title, or something else. The numeric and alphabetic styles use square brackets instead of parentheses. In the verbose styles, the label is provided in a footnote.

The pre- and postnote go with the citation label in this case, so that the author/editor names are always the first thing \textcite produces.

The intended use of \textcite seem to be constructions like

\Textcite{sigfrdisson} showed that ...
As shown by \textcite{sigfridsson} ...
\Textcite{sigfridsson} are known for their research on ...

Here the author/editors take the subject or object position and the citation label is only a parenthetical hint for the exact source. It is not too unreasonable to have the pre- and postnote attached to the citation label, i.e. the citation part of the output.

Note that I tried hard to have only the author/editor be the subject/object of the sentence and not the work itself. I would argue that uses such as

as was shown in \textcite{sigfridsson}.

where the work is the object (or subject), are not guaranteed to give satisfying results. This becomes apparent with style=verbose which would produce

as was shown in Sigfridsson and Ryde.1

1 Emma Sigfridsson and Ulf Ryde. ‘Comparison of methods for deriving atomic charges from the electrostatic potential and moments’. In: Journal of Computational Chemistry 19.4 (1998), pp. 377–395. DOI: 10.1002/(SICI)1096-987X(199803)19:4<377::AID-JCC1>3.0.CO;2-P.

If the work should be the subject or object you might be better off with a simple cite.

In case the default citations should look like

Author (Year)

I would probably invest a bit of time to make sure that \cite produces output like this so that the pre- and postnotes are in the expected position.

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