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Can we use especially after the special object we want to mention? In the following, does especially apply just to Australia?

First, the reading proves the significance of a mandatory voting system by giving us some cases from several countries such as Greece, Luxembourg, Thailand and Australia, especially.

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You can, but that's a lousy example usage because faced with four named "special" countries one's tempted to consider the alternative interpretation that maybe especially only applies to the last one (Australia). When only two countries are listed it's almost certain both of them are "specially selected". –  FumbleFingers Jul 20 '12 at 2:50
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Reading that sentence, I read it as especially applies to every country there. –  David Watts Jul 20 '12 at 8:40
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In my opinion, if "especially" is to encompass all four, it is conflicting with "such as". "Especially Greece, Luxembourg..." would be much clearer. You can combine these only if you use "especially" to cherry-pick from the set you gave: "such as Greece, Luxembourg ... and especially Australia". Either give random examples (such as) or give special examples (especially), or pick special from random (such as, and especially). Don't mark the whole set as both. –  SF. Jul 20 '12 at 10:51
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1 Answer 1

First, the reading proves the significance of a mandatory voting system by giving us some cases from several countries such as Greece, Luxembourg, Thailand and Australia, especially.

The "especially" used above might apply to Australia alone when used colloquially (perhaps along with a pause) in conversation. But the sentence will always be ambiguous in written form as most readers will assume that all four countries are special, many of the rest will assume that only Australia is special, and the remainder will either be confused or request additional clarification.

As I'm certain the OP is aware, the unambiguous alternative would read thusly:

First, the reading proves the significance of a mandatory voting system by giving us some cases from several countries such as Greece, Luxembourg, Thailand, and, especially Australia.

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