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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Should “each” be followed by a singular or plural possessive?

If a possessive noun, which is plural, is preceded by "each", then should it use the singular or plural possessive form? For example, which of the following is correct? spend time in each other's ...
3
votes
6answers
2k views

Which punctuation to use in “I wonder _ could there be…”

I just came across a sentence in this form: I wonder if could there be more precise translations ... Obviously the if doesn't belong. As a native speaker I would say I wonder __ could there ...
1
vote
1answer
633 views

Ellipsis at the end of a quote [duplicate]

Possible Duplicate: Punctuation of direct speech, edge cases Space before three dots? "I don't think so," she stated. "I don't think..." her voice trailed off. Is this second ...
1
vote
0answers
32 views

Usage of comma before “and” [duplicate]

Possible Duplicate: Should I put a comma before the last item in a list? Which is correct? Three attributes are considered in this talk: response time, availability, and throughput. ...
2
votes
1answer
575 views

Where do we put the question mark in a long question/statement?

Without the question mark, it is simple... Can we make it in one hour — as I want to eat my dinner now. (I like the dash as a clear separator for the question and statement parts of the ...
0
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0answers
43 views

Proper punctuation of “three to five page essay” [duplicate]

Possible Duplicate: How to write dashes in “a 2-4-room-apartment”? Which is the best way to write the quotation in the Question Title using numbers? 3–5-page essay 3 to 5-page essay 3–5 ...
0
votes
2answers
517 views

Is it correct to use multiple brackets in a sentence? [duplicate]

Possible Duplicate: Is it acceptable to nest parentheses? Sometimes I want to explain something a bit further twice or more in the same sentence, and I usually find it awkward to use or not ...
-1
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1answer
406 views

Nested/embedded quotations (quoting quotes) [duplicate]

Possible Duplicate: How are embedded quotations used? I'm having some trouble with this. Usually, I would quote with doubles, and then singles within. But this is becoming a bit confusing ...
0
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1answer
3k views

Can there be two consecutive dots at the end of the sentence? [closed]

What to do, when the sentence ends with an abbreviation. For example: The following results are by Deb et al. or The following results are by Deb et al.. Are two consecutive dots ok?
2
votes
6answers
18k views

If you're starting a sentence with “and” or another conjunction, must you follow the conjunction with a comma?

When I was a kid, I was always told that starting a sentence off with "and" was improper. However, now it seems as if the consensus amongst members of the English cartel is that it is totally ...
1
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2answers
1k views

Parenthetical statements in direct speech

In some novels, I have often seen parenthetical statements used within direct-speech. e.g. from War and Peace Page 1 Non, I warn you, if you don't say this means war — if you still defend all ...
4
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3answers
1k views

What is the best use of the apostrophe in a church name when the church also “possesses” something? [duplicate]

Possible Duplicate: Possessive of a word that’s already possessive? For example, would it be correct to write St. Marys' basketball team for the basketball team belonging to St. Mary's ...
2
votes
1answer
295 views

Punctuation outside of quotes [duplicate]

Possible Duplicate: How should I punctuate around quotes? When should end punctuation go inside quotes? Here is what I have written: Is it too late to say, "Don't go. I'm sorry"? Here ...
6
votes
1answer
152 views

Using “?:” after a question

I find myself using the dual punctuation marks "?:" when I want to say "I have a question about the thing that follows". For example: Is it possible for the following sentence to be translated ...
2
votes
2answers
257 views

What is the rule of using semicolons in this sentence? [duplicate]

Possible Duplicate: Is it proper usage to replace a comma in a list with a semi-colon in this situation (see details)? Transglobal historians are muscling up with their magnum opuses; ...
7
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2answers
4k views

Should the comma be in italics? [closed]

Consider the following two sentences: Statement 1: The parameters were calculated a priori, and the other variables were calculated iteratively. Statement 2: The parameters were ...
1
vote
2answers
238 views

Difference between “?!” and “!?”?

Is there any difference between “?!” and “!?”? The Wikipedia page on Interrobang describes: In informal English, the same inflection is usually notated by ending a sentence with first a question ...
2
votes
1answer
232 views

Punctuation after the interjection “by heaven” [duplicate]

Possible Duplicate: Exclamation marks in the middle of a sentence How would you punctuate the following phrase with "by heaven"? It was used by a cricket commentator. By heaven ...
4
votes
4answers
3k views

What is a correct punctuation for a sentence starting with “One more thing”?

In the following sentence what would be the correct punctuation One more thing don't tell anyone about our conversation. Should "One more thing" be separated by comma, dash or colon? Or perhaps ...
4
votes
1answer
2k views

Why is the comma inside quotation marks when people are quoted? [duplicate]

Possible Duplicate: When should end punctuation go inside quotes? From a AMS blog post: Some organizations have temporarily suspended their polling, and with the news media tabbing ...
3
votes
2answers
882 views

Punctuation following an interruption with a dash

I am not sure what the correct punctuation to use when ending a clause that was introduced with a dash when the next character in the main sentence is a punctuation mark. Take the following contrived ...
6
votes
2answers
531 views

How to correctly assimilate dots, if at all?

I see this sentence: There are many examples like mining, farming, foresting etc., that are dangerous to society because they cause environmental damage. Shouldn't "etc.," be written instead ...
5
votes
1answer
9k views

Symbol, punctuation, or abbreviation that indicates a “paraphrase”? [duplicate]

Possible Duplicate: What is the proper use of [square brackets] in quotes? This question is born of practical necessity - one that I encountered while quoting a reference in "another" Stack ...
3
votes
1answer
488 views

Comma — a punctuation error?

Consider: This book provides a solid psychological understanding of these experiments, and adds a few expansions and conclusions of its own. It also provides … My question regards the comma. I ...
3
votes
1answer
3k views

What is the correct punctuation of the phrase: one size fits all [closed]

What is the correct punctuation for the phrase: one size fits all? I have seen two variants: 'one size fits all', and one-size-fits-all
0
votes
0answers
14 views

“Rate, comment, and subscribe” vs. “rate, comment and subscribe” [duplicate]

Possible Duplicate: Should I put a comma before the last item in a list? In a sentence, when listing a couple — at least three — of things, are you supposed to add a comma before the last ...
5
votes
1answer
363 views

Punctuating “What are you going to do, sue me?”

For example: What are you going to do, sue me? Is that correct? Or is there supposed to be a question mark after the first question: What are you going to do? Sue me? It seems like "Sue ...
3
votes
1answer
25k views

Sincerely [comma?] name [duplicate]

Possible Duplicate: Should you use a comma/period after “Thanks”/“Regards” in email signatures? I see answers on how to end a letter putting a comma after for example sincerely, like: ...
3
votes
0answers
83 views

If a question ends in the abbreviation of et cetera, do you still add the period before the question mark? [duplicate]

Possible Duplicate: When “etc.” is at the end of a phrase, do you place a period after it? Example: How do I pay for the bananas, oranges, etc.? or How do I pay for the bananas, ...
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votes
3answers
712 views

Is a semicolon appropriate in this sentence? [closed]

Is 1 or 2 correct? Or neither? I'm not saying I'm Batman, but answer me this; have you ever seen me and Batman in the same room? I'm not saying I'm Batman, but answer me this. Have you ever ...
5
votes
3answers
2k views

Why don't years have commas?

For example, if one asks "what's two thousand plus two thousand", one could write it like this: 2,000 + 2,000 But when one writes the date: January 2, 2000 So why do we put commas when ...
0
votes
2answers
235 views

How can this sentence be written correctly? [closed]

Our interactive products are fun to use on desktop, mobile and touchscreen devices, just look awesome and are driven by the latest technology. The commas don't seem right to me. Shouldn't there ...
1
vote
1answer
205 views

To apostrophe or not to apostrophe [duplicate]

Possible Duplicate: User’s Guide vs Users’ Guide I am sorry if this is really obvious but I can't work out from Wikipedia if it's right to use one here. My English is terrible but I try: ...
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2answers
195 views

What is the best way and what are the differences to introduce a “pause explanatory” phrase inside another one? [closed]

In this example: bla bla bla phrase such as even if something like this doesn’t exist bla bla bla. What can I use to inject my phrase in the middle of the sentence? ,phrase, (commas) ;phrase; ...
-1
votes
2answers
1k views

How should rhetorical questions be punctuated? [duplicate]

Possible Duplicate: Should rhetorical questions end with a period? How would you punctuate the following sentence, and others like it? Are there any precedents, or applicable style guides? ...
3
votes
3answers
2k views

When should you use italics to reference an example and when should it be inside apostrophes?

When should you use italics to reference an example or quote, and when should it be inside apostrophes instead? (I am trying to tighten up here. I write in advertising and we break so many rules with ...
3
votes
2answers
2k views

Punctuation with block-quotes

How do I properly place a comma after a big block-quote? Let's say I have a sentence like this: The author states: < a big quote goes here. >, therefore... Since my sentence continues after ...
10
votes
2answers
73k views

How to write “till now” in a résumé? [closed]

I am writing a résumé. I want to specify that I started my education in 2009 and as of now I am at the 4th grade (in other words, still learning), so how should I specify that in résumé: 2009 - ...
2
votes
1answer
1k views

Using hyphen and quote marks in composed term? [duplicate]

Possible Duplicate: When is it necessary to use a hyphen in writing a compound word? I want to write a term composed out of multiple words, and I would like to know whether I have to use ...
5
votes
3answers
512 views

Is this correct usage of a semi-colon?

I always have problems with the use of semi-colons. Is the following proper usage? They are connected but also standalone sentences. I speak and write English fluently; as you can see from my CV, ...
5
votes
2answers
265 views

Does use-mention distinction warrant breaking conventions?

Does use-mention distinction sometimes warrant breaking the following capitalization and punctuation conventions? American convention recommends placing punctuation within quote marks. Sentences ...
3
votes
1answer
2k views

Is it correct to use the conjunction “or” more than twice in one sentence?

For an example is it correct to say: You may use X or Y or Z or even something else. And what is proper punctuation for such example in case it is valid.
15
votes
3answers
6k views

How does one correctly punctuate a sentence that declares that one has a question? [duplicate]

Possible Duplicate: Punctuation with “The question is…” '.', '?' or ' “… ?” ' Position of question mark when sentence doesn't end ...
2
votes
0answers
202 views

Is there some guideline that I can point to about the overuse of bold and underline? [closed]

I am getting really tired of getting emails and PowerPoint presentations in which half of the words bold and underlined. There is also excessive use of exclamation points, all caps, and overly strong ...
5
votes
4answers
19k views

“Oh, dear!” vs. “Oh dear!”

Which is correct, "Oh, dear!" or "Oh dear!"? My understanding is that the word oh is an interjection, and should thus be followed by a comma. However, is the second usage the correct one because the ...
2
votes
2answers
248 views

Should I place a comma in “I live in London where I work at a coffeeshop”

Should I put a comma between "London" and "where" in the following sentence, or is it acceptable not to include it? I live in London where I work at a coffeeshop brewing delicious coffee.
2
votes
1answer
5k views

Periods after directional abreviation in address

I am creating a business card, and I need to put the address of the company on it. What is the proper way to write this address? 555 14th St NW, Atlanta, GA 55555 555 14th St NW., Atlanta, ...
3
votes
1answer
490 views

Use of comma following prepositional phrase

Is a comma required after the date (year only or day of week only) that is in a prepositional phrase before the subject of the sentence? For example: In 1966 I began college.
25
votes
3answers
4k views

Really nice, Mat

I see a lot of people saying things such as Nice work, Nick Or Thanks, Mat Is the comma really needed? I'm not 100% sure because my spelling and grammar is not great, but I think it reads ...
5
votes
5answers
2k views

Should emoticons be regarded as punctuation marks?

According to Wikipedia, “[p]unctuation marks are symbols that indicate the structure and organization of written language, as well as intonation and pauses to be observed when reading aloud”. Does ...