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Most linguistic papers and books I have read uses some variant of Author (Year) and (Author Year) for citations in the text. Does there exist Markup syntax for citations, do we want to use it and what should it look like?

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I don't know if Markdown supports citation markup directly. But we could, at least, choose a BibTex style and use a tool like bibtex2html to convert and paste on the question/answer. There are several styles to choose from, some of which follow the pattern Author(Year).

For example, with the decsci style, the citation would look like

According to the handbook of van Leunen [van Leunen(1979)], this paragraph—and certainly this section—should be longer than one sentence.

and the reference to the paper would look like:

[van Leunen(1979)] van Leunen, M.-C. (1979). A Handbook for Scholars. Knopf.

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