A hyphen is a symbol used to join two words or two syllables of a single word together. It is not to be confused with dashes or the minus symbol, as these are all longer than the hyphen and serve different purposes in language.

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13 views

year olds or year-olds

I am writing about some leadership stuff, and I am trying to say that I am leading the 14-15 year old boys. How do I correctly use year-olds as in I was the adviser to the 14-15 year-olds. Thanks in ...
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39 views

Hyphenation in “incomplete-information games” (technical jargon) [closed]

A game of complete information is a mathematical object defined within Game Theory. I want to use a compound adjective to specify that a game is a game of complete information. Should I use a hyphen ...
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37 views

“built-in to the library”: hyphen or no hyphen

http://web.mit.edu/galib/www/FeatureList.html says, "You can use the types built-in to the library (bit-string, array, list, tree) or derive a chromosome based on your own objects." I've sometimes ...
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2answers
44 views

Hyphenation of “left hand side”

I would like to know exactly where (or whether) "the right hand side", "the left hand wall", etc. should be hyphenated.
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39 views

space before/after emdash or not? [duplicate]

I have seen style manuals suggest that there be no space between emdash and the surrounding words. The following NY times article has spaces in the first sentence: "An expression of concern by ...
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1answer
76 views

A What-Do-You-Call-It question

In a book, there is this sentence: "My mom would have put this in her What-Have-You-Done-Now? File, but it was SOS to me." -p 19, The SOS File, Betsy Byars. Is there a name for this kind of ...
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1answer
35 views

Checkup vs Check-up [closed]

Quite a few people turned up for a 'checkup'. Is the use of the word checkup correct here? Microsoft Word and Firefox's autocorrect are both convinced that I should instead be using check-up, ...
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1answer
39 views

Commas in a hyphenated series

I would like to make a statement to the effect of: The coating contains durable wind-, rain-, and chemical-resistant compounds. Can someone please provide guidance on the proper use of commas in ...
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3answers
37 views

“Well-being” or “wellbeing”?

I was writing a document in Microsoft Word and I used the word "well-being". Word told me to correct it to "wellbeing". When I do, Word tells me to correct it back to "well-being". Which is correct? I ...
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1answer
17 views

acceptable options when dropping and including hyphen in some phrases?

There are many commonly used phrases where hyphen is implicit and it's common to drop the hyphen. p1: computer based approach p2: computer-based approach p1 is where the hyphen is implicit and is ...
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2answers
50 views

“5-min” video vs “5 min” video vs “5min” video

Example: Paul and Jake discuss the Frame Timing API in this 5-min video: … Which character (if any) should be put between the number and the word “min”?
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49 views

“Stockmarkets” vs. “stock markets”

I am having trouble with the difference between stockmarkets and stock markets — or should it be stock-markets? In some articles it is introduced as stockmarkets, but that term is not found in ...
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0answers
49 views

Hyphenation of SI prefixes

I constantly see variations in the hyphenization of words containing SI prefixes. Nano-, micro-, milli-, etc. But when is it proper to ditch the hyphen, and when should it be included? For example, ...
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2answers
45 views

multiple words connected using multiple hyphens or one?

There are many topics here related to multiple hyphen use, which seems to depend on various factors. human-voice controlled system human-voice-controlled system human voice-controlled ...
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2answers
58 views

Hyphenating measurements [duplicate]

A construction that I have been seeing a lot lately that seems surprising to me is "The 8-foot-long bridge ...," with two hyphens. It seems surprising to me (or maybe I'm just noticing it) that ...
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1answer
55 views

Use of a hyphen with the word “based”

I'm checking a technical paper submission and came across the phrase We propose spherical Gaussian based approximations to calculate this analytically. and wondering if this needs a ...
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1answer
41 views

How would you hyphenate a 4 word phrase?

The context is "...how self-uncertainty affects attitudes toward non-group-identity-affiliated topics, such as..." For some more context, "group identity" is a phrase in psychology. So my two thoughts ...
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3answers
67 views

proper grammar of multiple numbers ordered sequentially specifying different things

I have a sentence submitted to me from someone else that says One case (8 - one lb. boxes) of... What is the proper grammar to say eight one pound boxes? I'm not sure what the best format is for ...
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0answers
65 views

Capitalization of hyphenated words with corresponding acronyms?

There is a related question here, though I am specifically interested in words that have a corresponding acronym. i.e. do the capitalization rules change on first and/or subsequent use of a term ...
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0answers
27 views

Is “whitespace” one word or two? [duplicate]

I tend to write "whitespace" to talk about any negative space in type (in particular, the characters that cause it in ASCII & Unicode). However I have also seen it written "white-space" and ...
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2answers
103 views

Use of apostrophe in adjective phrase containing a possessive

I work and write for a tech company that has created many first-in-the-world technologies. In press releases, I often write something like “[Company name] today announced another world’s first with ...
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2answers
50 views

In a regular sentence, I could add more information by using dashes - like this - or commas ,like this, but what if I want to do that in a list?

I'm writing a story where only certain people know something about my MC. I list the people like this: Only my coaches, my best friend - Alicia, who’s also my cousin -, and her parents. I add ...
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53 views

Using hyphens in numbers (British English)

I heard that there is some recent rule which says that you shouldn't hyphenate numbers such as "twenty-two". Is this true?
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69 views

What is the correct way to use hyphens when saying “eight to ten week cycle”? [duplicate]

A friend has asked about this and so far most seem to believe the best answer is: At the end of an eight- to ten-week project period, the team reports their findings and recommendations to their ...
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1answer
77 views

What does this correction mark mean? (A vertical dash through a hyphen, along with vertical parentheses)

I spoke with a teacher about an essay I wrote recently. We talked through certain parts which couldn't be described by squiggles and dots in red ink. This helped me, but I'm having difficulty now with ...
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1answer
53 views

If I hyphenate first-order conditions should I also hyphenate higher-order conditions?

It seems to me that the hyphens in "first-order conditions" and "second-order conditions" are correct, but I'm editing an article that also mentions "higher-order conditions" and "lower-order ...
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2answers
71 views

Should “building blocks” be hyphenated? [duplicate]

Should "building blocks" be hyphenated? I am using the two words (or perhaps one word) as a noun. E.g., These axioms serve as the building-blocks of the English language. I understand that ...
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2answers
37 views

How to split a multiple word phrase and another word/phrase [closed]

I work in a global company that with many Japanese people has a general rule to add "san" to the names of people. With so many names from different countries and different order rules it is hard to ...
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3answers
186 views

Is it “re-offend” or “reoffend”? [closed]

I want to know whether there is a hyphen in the word re-offend, or if it is spelt reoffend. I looked in Oxford English dictionary and the word "reoffend" appears, but then I checked Merriam-Webster ...
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42 views

What the correct syllabification for “condolences”?

My word processor soft-hyphenated condolences as condolenc-es. Does this look natural to the eyes of native speakers? I, a non-native speaker, think it should be condolen-ces.
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29 views

Early hyphenation library - 80s - 90s [closed]

I recall back in the late 1980s and perhaps early 1990s a library that was available in a number of forms that achieved excellent hyphenation in many/most languages. I seem to remember it was called ...
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2answers
250 views

How do you capitalize and hyphenate “at a glance” in a title?

I'd like to use the following as a section title: Module At-a-Glance Is it capitalized and punctuated properly?
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1answer
55 views

Is this phrase “2- or 4-person” correct? [duplicate]

When listing a numerical hyphenation...,for example "2- or 4-person", does the first number have a unconnected hyphen? What is the general rule?
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18 views

“state lattice-based motion planner” or “state-lattice based motion planner” ? [duplicate]

Which one in the following groups is correct respectively? (1) state lattice-based motion planner state-lattice based motion planner (2) spatiotemporal sampling-based planning method ...
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2answers
138 views

Pronunciation of “-” sign, particularly in Unix commands

While talking about commands for command-line interface, I sometimes need to pronounce how command should be typed, like this one: nc -l -p 1234 I used to pronounce - sign in this context as a ...
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23 views

Separate vs. joined words (hyphen or not) [duplicate]

English is not my native language, and sometimes it's confusing.. Especially uk-english vs. american and hyphens Can someone explain a bit when to use which of these? It's for a global english ...
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724 views

What’s the correct hyphenation in “trying to be a decision maker”?

Which of these three ways of writing it is right: decision maker (a space separates the two pieces) decision-maker (a hyphen separates the two pieces) decisionmaker (nothing separates the two ...
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1answer
160 views

Consistent & accepted style(s) for hyphenating a shade of color used as an adjective for hair?

I'm helping edit a friend's book. Generally, I'm confident with my edits, yet one thing keeps nagging me. I'd appreciate expert guidance. In the book, some characters have shades of brown hair, e.g.: ...
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2answers
90 views

Does one capitalize “Portuguese” when used in a hyphenated adjective? [closed]

When Portuguese is used as part of a hyphenated adjective, does it take an initial capital letter? Just checking on this while proofreading an article. Examples: portuguese-speaking college ...
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1answer
130 views

Are the hyphens necessary in “hard-to-find” or can they go without? [duplicate]

Is it necessary to hyphenate the words "hard-to-find" together when referring to things which have a property of being not readily located? Example: Adam locates hard-to-find items.
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75 views

Is “two-thirds” or “two thirds” correct? [duplicate]

I just recently answered a question related to how much water was filled in a glass. I answered "two thirds" but the answer was wrong because in the key answer book it was "two-thirds". Please tell me ...
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2answers
124 views

How should one punctuate “upper right most”?

For upper right most, I’ve seen it written upper-right most, upper-right-most, and with no hyphens at all. What makes the most sense to me is upper rightmost, but it’s hard to tell that upper right ...
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0answers
54 views

What is anti-money and how do I launder it? [duplicate]

So the phrase "anti-money laundering" has an obvious meaning, referring to something or some process that acts against the laundering of money. However, I find the use of the hyphen slightly ...
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37 views

slip rate dependent friction - hyphen needed?

Should I put a hyphen for friction that depends on slip rate? Possibilities: slip rate-dependent friction or slip-rate dependent friction or slip rate dependent friction The last ...
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2answers
174 views

Confusion over the general rules governing the use of the hyphen in English [duplicate]

I often get confused by the rules for using hyphens. According to this entry from the Oxford Dictionaries web site, I must always use a hyphen in these cases: Hyphens are used in many compound ...
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2answers
50 views

Do we need hyphen in this: graded-reading books?

Is it necessary to have a hyphen in the following phrase? graded-reading books Please my friends you are only hope for me at a last chance salon because my teacher he is not knowing answer.
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1answer
116 views

Nouns constructed out of an adjective and a suffix? [closed]

I experienced a bit of interesting language-building this past weekend. A post about "subtle -isms" (i.e. subtle sexism, subtle racism, etc.) had various commenters who used the phrase "subtle-ism" ...
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3answers
146 views

“A 1000-sqft room” vs. “a 1000 sq. ft. room”

Which of the following is correct? This is a 1000-sqft room This is a 1000 sq. ft. room Or perhaps neither is right and there's a better alternative?
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2answers
254 views

Less-experienced vs less experienced employee

As an Android developer with 3 years of experience, I also help less experienced team members. Do I need to put a hyphen between "less" and "experienced"?
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4answers
2k views

Do I keep myself “up-to-date” or “up to date” on something?

Question is quite straightforward. I want to say that "I keep myself up-to-date on the latest technology". Or is it better "I keep myself up to date with the latest technology"? Thanks