Punctuation is the term used for the marks, such as the period/full stop, comma, dash, and parentheses, used to separate structural units, and perform other roles that clarify the meaning.

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Commas or Semicolons [closed]

Consider this (partial) sentence: Literary devices such as the alliteration in “that they” and “with ‘Why’”, the simile in “the pipes like great serpents”, the assonance in “not known before”, and ...
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34 views

Comma, quote needed before “quoted” material?

Which punctuation, if any, is correct: A. Did you ever ask Barb, "Hey, what's the matter with you?" B. Did you ever ask Barb, hey, what's the matter with you? C. Did you ever ask Barb, Hey, what's ...
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102 views

What is the correct grammatical formation of this paragraph?

I have seen this particular meme trending on a lot of social media platforms of late. I'm wondering what the grammatically correct formation of the meme (phrase) is? The meme in questions reads as ...
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0answers
10 views

Capitalisation after e.g. in a dotpoint list [duplicate]

I am confused how I should treat capitalisation in the following cases: Example 1 Include the following themes in your writing: respect, e.g. students must respect their teachers. Q1: Should ...
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44 views

Should there be a comma, full stop or semi-colon after 'reality'? [duplicate]

It takes a while to bring myself back into reality, the last few moments having past with such violent surrealism.
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48 views

A question about question marks [closed]

I consider the second sentence more a statement than a question and have used a period. Is the following correct? Is she drawn back into the past for a reason? Or is it all simply a horrible ...
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2answers
47 views

What category is an apostrophe in that a comma or a semicolon is not in?

Apostrophes, commas and semicolons fall under the "punctuation" category. Is there a subcategory, however, that distinguishes between apostrophes and commas/semicolons/colons...? Thank you! Edit: ...
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2answers
64 views

When is a clause not essential?

I am having trouble figuring out when to use commas to set off "nonessential" information. Sometimes it's obvious: Bob, who is thirty years old, is an alcoholic. But other times I'm not sure: ...
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0answers
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What form of long dash — to isolate asides — is preferable? [closed]

I started writing books over a decade ago and my first editor kept tossing out most of my parenthetical ideas, replacing them with long dashes. I liked it; so now I separate asides, flashes of ...
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5answers
90 views

Punctuation in a sentence “from A or B to C and even D”

Is there a need for punctuation in the following sentence: "Response time has reduced from weeks or days to hours and even minutes in some cases." More generally, how should one use punctuation in a ...
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2answers
46 views

Punctuating a parenthetical expression inside a quote (that uses ellipses)

Does this punctuation make sense, with the first half of the quote trailing off in an ellipsis and the second half starting with one? “Funny thing…”, he paused to puff the pipe alight, then ...
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0answers
15 views

Should I add a full stop/period at the end of each item in a bullet point list? [duplicate]

Should I add a full stop/period at the end of each item in a bullet point list? i.e. My first item. My second item. My third item. or My first item My second item Or what about a longer item ...
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1answer
35 views

when quoting a quote does the period go at the end, as shown in the below example? [duplicate]

“I, Joe Smith, a Director of ABC Company, hereby swear and affirm that the original ‘Unanimous Consent of the Board of Directors By Way of Written Resolution of ABC Company, Passed on February 13, ...
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3answers
53 views

Is it grammatically incorrect to split two separate items as adj1, or adj2, noun? For example: adj1, or adj2, n = adj1 n and adj2 n

I'm writing some content and a coworker stated that the following was incorrect: You have the option to use the red, or green, ball. or should I be saying: You have the option to use the red ball ...
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1answer
68 views

Lost In Punctuation

Usually, when a piece of text is translated from one language to some other language, and (due to slightly different idioms, phrases, words, etc.) the end meaning is changed, then it is attributed to ...
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2answers
55 views

Ellipsis after a complete sentence

I'm wondering how to use an ellipsis after a complete sentence within a quote when not intending to use the entire quote. Specifically, I'm looking at a Bible verse. Consider the following: ...
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3answers
1k views

Commas before that [closed]

Is it appropriate to put a comma before that in this sentence? But surely he had known, or thought he'd known, that Santa wasn't real.
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248 views

“Take/Consider … as an example” vs “Take/Consider … for example”

For more than a decade, I have always seen/used the phrase "Take/Consider ... as an example" followed by a comma. Then, my recent visit on this page got me confused and raised more questions in me. ...
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26 views

Punctuation before “even” at the end of items in a series

What form of punctuation should precede even when it replaces and in a series? People brought a strange variety of foods to the potluck. The dishes included green bean cookies, grasshopper tacos, ...
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36 views

Do I still omit the closing quotation mark before a paragraph break in speech?

Traditionally, paragraphs in speech are rendered like this: The professor harumphed. "It's not as easy as that. "English grammar is surprisingly complicated. Why, only yesterday..." That is, only ...
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1answer
41 views

What is the right punctuation for a series of questions within a single sentence?

What is the right punctuation to use with a list of examples that are questions? For example: This is a list of statements from the texts that I find vague: "From what are the interiors of a ...
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1answer
29 views

What is the least amount of punctuation required in the following: [closed]

He told them to stop their whining. Is there a way to write the above correctly without using quotation marks?
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1answer
38 views

Comma before “include:” preceding list: right or wrong, and why? [duplicate]

My first style disagreement with another writer at a new job. I say the comma in the example below is superfluous because there is no introductory or non-restrictive clause. I think the options are: ...
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4answers
999 views

Is it okay to ignore putting periods between initials?

My name is Venkatesh MG. M stands for the name of my birth place, which begins with M, and G is an initial derived from my father's name. Since school, I have been using only these two variations of ...
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1answer
61 views

How to put question mark after a quotation mark (in Chicago or MLA style)? [closed]

For example, if I want to ask a question that says: Where is, "You know nothing, Jon Snow" should I punctuate it as Where is, "You know nothing, Jon Snow?" or Where is, "You know ...
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1answer
78 views

Should I use … or —?

I came across this recently and curious as to which is correct. Here are a couple example sentences: I wish you would…oh, never mind. OR I wish you would—oh, never mind. In the above ...
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46 views

How do you punctuate a list of lists of names?

I am not sure how to punctuate this sentence (the punctuation below is my best guess): We refer to the classical research of Oleinik-Petrovsky, Thom and Milnor. How it should be understood: The ...
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1answer
148 views

Which of the following sentences is correct? [closed]

Together with my three fellow students, we are most interested in hiring the villa. Togehter with my three fellow students we are most interested in hiring the villa. Together with my three fellow ...
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71 views

Dialogue tags with a mute speaker

The rules of punctuation of dialogue tags and interruptions without a dialogue tag are quite different. The two types of interruptions usually can be distinguished by the verb used - if it describes ...
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3answers
65 views

Comma and arithmetics

Should one put a comma before an arithmetic operation? What about long expressions? Example: The final distance is equal to the initial distance plus initial velocity multiplied by time, plus half ...
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2answers
52 views

Ellipsis at end of interrupted quote

How should a quote like this be punctuated? "Amanda, I meant to tell you earlier, but...," his voice shook with sorrow, "I couldn't find the words." Would this be correct if I deleted the comma ...
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1answer
77 views

How to use comma around mathematical symbols?

I am having trouble determining the correct use of comma when specifying mathematical symbols, and the literature that I follow does not seem to be consistent. Which of the following would be correct ...
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3answers
984 views

Can I start a sentence with Then? [closed]

Are these sentences correct in terms of punctuation and grammar? She asked, "Could I have a drink of your water?" Then she walked away when I said, "No, you can't." Thanks so much for the first ...
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3answers
85 views

Usage of comma in “Some like it hot, others cold” [closed]

How does one punctuate the following construct: Some like it hot, others, cold. Somehow, the two commas seem incorrect or at least awkward. Should the second one be omitted altogether? Or should ...
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2answers
180 views

If quoting only an extract of dialogue from a fiction book, do you still need to have quotes within quotes? [closed]

I need to show kids how to write a book review. I am writing a book review as an exemplar to show them how it's done. However, I got stuck when it came to citing extracts of dialogue. My question is ...
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1answer
35 views

The infinitive after the comma [closed]

Why is the comma before the infinitive? The Roman state was a parasite, draining men and wealth from the island while failing, or not even trying, to defend it from Picts, Irish and Saxons.
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1answer
56 views

What's the proper expanded form of RGB and HSL?

I know they mean "Red Green Blue" and "Hue Saturation Lightness", but the Wikipedia articles on each refer to them as "red, green, blue", and "hue-saturation-lightness". Which way, if either, is ...
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3answers
116 views

Is the following sentence correct? A statement followed by a list. Should I use a colon? [closed]

Is the following sentence correct? "My main priority as a tutor has always been to help the learner feel at ease, with me, with themselves and with their own abilities." I feel like there should be ...
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2answers
225 views

Should there be commas before sentence-ending words such as 'too', 'either', 'apparently', 'obviously' and 'respectively'? [duplicate]

Should there be commas before sentence-ending words such as 'too', 'either',  'apparently', 'obviously' and 'respectively'? He wants to go to the mall, too. She's not attending the meeting, ...
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273 views

SAT grammar question: Why is this “them” incorrect?

SAT grammar question: There are (more than) 300 million English speakers (in) India, most of (them) acquired English (as) a second language. (No error) The parentheses designate areas where the ...
3
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2answers
141 views

“why oh why” or “why, oh why”? [closed]

Is this punctuated correctly? If happy little bluebirds fly beyond the rainbow, Why oh why can’t I?" Or should “oh why” be set off by commas? If happy little bluebirds fly beyond the ...
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1answer
38 views

Semi-colon, comma, or two separate sentences? [closed]

Which of these is correct: Thanks. I appreciate it. Thanks, I appreciate it. Thanks; I appreciate it.
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1answer
463 views

When citing a French citation in the original, should the guillemets (angle quotes) be changed? What about punctuation order?

I’ve come across a puzzling punctuation problem! I’m working on a document in US English. It includes a citation of a French text in the original French, and this citation includes a citation (all in ...
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1answer
61 views

Regarding Comma or Semi-Colon

In this question: "I am curious; what behavior are you referring to?". Is it correct to use a semi-colon after curious, or to use a comma? Such as, "I am curious, what behavior are you referring ...
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1answer
69 views

Semicolon and comma placement [closed]

I'm not sure how to punctuate this sentence in an essay I'm writing. I'm pretty sure a semicolon goes somewhere, and it certainly feels like I don't have enough commas. Please include with your answer ...
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1answer
66 views

Is this punctuation wrong or just stilted?

I tend to over-punctuate because I don't have a clue (or I use speech as an guideline) Are the commas wrong or just awkward in the sentence below? It was controversial, in part, because of the ...
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109 views

Punctuation of quoted sentence used as a subject of outer sentence

I know the rules of punctuation when interrupting a sentence of dialogue, but how do you punctuate the end of a quoted sentence which is used as the subject of another sentence? He picked up after ...
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1answer
90 views

Which one is the correct dialogue punctuation format? [closed]

I am writing my first novel and this the very first confusion I would like to clarify. As I am not a native English speaker, I find it very hard to understand the punctuation scheme in direct ...
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1answer
66 views

Should I use a comma before the conjunction in this sentence? [duplicate]

The sentence The movie was loud and the chatter was louder. Should I need to add a comma before the and that joins the first sentence The movie was loud and the independent clause the chatter ...
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3answers
172 views

Can you ask a question without a question mark?

So if you're an X, you get a free pass on being a Y. Thanks for that. Is that sentence a question? I would call it a statement, but someone is insisting that it is a question, and gave this ...