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Medieval punctuation was different from the one we use now; for example, Medieval punctuation included punctus, punctus versus, and punctus flexus.

When did their equivalent in modern English emerge?

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up vote 6 down vote accepted

Modern punctuation, designed to clarify syntactic structures rather than to indicate breathings, is largely a Renaissance invention, developing during the first generations of the printing press, and codified in the eighteenth century (about the same time that capitalization and spelling became fixed in more or less their current form). Among the earliest works showing "modern" punctuation is Francis Bacon's Essays. An interesting early discussion of the nature of modern punctuation can be found in Ben Jonson's English Grammar (composed ca. 1617, printed posthumously in 1640). Eighteenth- and nineteenth-century punctuation practice varies considerably, but tends to be "heavy"; current "light" punctuation is largely the invention of H. G. and F. G. Fowler, The King's English.

http://www.ualberta.ca/~sreimer/ms-course/course/punc.htm

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