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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What to do if a sentence ends with “Yahoo!”? [duplicate]

Possible Duplicate: How to handle a name that includes an exclamation point (or other punctuation)? Just like the title of this question. I was reading an article about CAPTCHAs on ...
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What punctuation belongs before a list?

What is the correct punctuation in English: There are two types of insectsXX a) white b) black Should the punctuation at XX be “;” or “:”?
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About possessive apostrophe usage! [duplicate]

Possible Duplicate: What is the correct possessive for nouns ending in s? Hello! New to English, but doing fairly fine so far... well, here's a situation I had a couple times, and... well, ...
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Is it OK to drop the periods in abbreviations?

When I was in school, strictly every abbreviation had a period after each (capitalized) letter, as in U.S.A. These days, it seems ok just to capitalise, as in USA. Is this a new rule? It does look ...
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Should rhetorical questions end with a period?

Would it be appropriate to end a rhetorical question with a period, to show that it is not intended as a question that one should ponder or attempt to answer? For instance: Why do I eat so ...
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Why is there a slash within “n/a”

not available is not not/available, and not applicable is not not/applicable. Why is it n/a?
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When is it appropriate to use a hyphen? [duplicate]

Possible Duplicate: To hyphenate or not? What is the proper way to spell "side dish"? Is it: "side dish" or "side-dish"? Also, Is it "ham-fried" or "ham fried"? Basically, when do you use ...
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In the sentence “You, too.”, is the comma acceptable?

I tend to think it is, as "too" serves the role of a referential phrase, repeating the verb-phrase of a preceding sentence, and "you" acts simply as a subject pronoun. But, I've heard an argument to ...
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Can a sentence starting with “While, …” be grammatically correct?

I have a colleague who often writes sentences in the form "While, [these circumstances would make X seem unlikely to be the case], [these other circumstances show that X is in fact the case]. For ...
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How to punctuate an answer to a question when the answer is also a question?

The title to this question is sort of long-winded but the example here should clarify it. Which of these is correct? Who should be baby-sitting your children, your neighborhood teenagers or ...
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Use of ! to convey sarcasm vs. emphasis

One, two or even three exclamation marks are often added, especially in e-mail, to convey emphasis to phrases such as Thanks!, or No problem!. My problem is that in British English, you could also ...
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Is it proper to omit periods after honorifics (Mr, Mrs, Dr)?

I've been reading the Economist lately and they apparently don't punctuate honorifics like "Mr.", "Mrs.", e.g. The popular rejection of Mr Mubarak offers the Middle East’s best chance for reform ...
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When and how should I use multiple exclamation marks?

Now, I never do this, but in some few cases I have seen people use multiple exclamation (or question) marks like this: Hey!!! Is that grammatically correct? (Or just okay). In case it is, how ...
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To hyphenate or not?

As a non-native speaker of English and an engineer by training, I always get confused about hyphenation and almost always end up referring to Google every time I need to make that decision. Does ...
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1answer
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“Easy to explain, here is an example for you:”

Here I present you two scenarios of mine: This can be explained very easily, with this example: example here and This can be explained very easily: example here On the first ...
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…Capital letter after period(s)?

Excuse my terrible English knowledge, but I have been wondering this for some time already: What is correct for the next phrase?: And he was there. alone. sad. and crying... or And he was ...
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Coordinating conjunction immediately followed by parenthetical — Is a comma needed or not?

William Strunk's Rules of Usage states: If a dependent clause, or an introductory phrase requiring to be set off by a comma, precedes the second independent clause, no comma is needed after the ...
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Is it acceptable to nest parentheses?

Is it acceptable to nest parentheses (for example, if I (meaning myself) write like this)?
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Where do I place the closing character when I end a sentence with parenthesis? [duplicate]

Possible Duplicate: Where does the period go when using parentheses? Which of the following should I use? Are there any exceptions to the rule? I enjoy breakfast (sometimes). I ...
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1answer
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What is the difference between “solidus” and “slash”?

I was reading a text, and I found the word solidus. What is a solidus? Is the word normally used in everyday language, or is there another word that replaces solidus even if it's not the completely ...
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Usage of “|” in English sentences

I have a book about punctuation marks, but it doesn't report when to use | in a English sentence. I notice that the New Oxford American Dictionary uses that character to separate the examples it ...
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1answer
165 views

Punctuation placement in speech [duplicate]

Possible Duplicates: Is it ever acceptable for a period to come after a quote at the end of a sentence? How much punctuation is appropriate when ending a sentence with a full-sentence ...
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2answers
951 views

How to punctuate sentences like “I'm just calling a spade, a spade.”

I was browsing Area 51 and I saw this comment: I'm just calling a spade, a spade. I'm never quite sure how to punctuate sentences like these where a phrase is repeated back to back, without any ...
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Usage of commas with “albeit”

Is it correct to place two commas in this sentence? New York City plays a significant, albeit previously neglected, role in the urban narratives of [...].
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How to punctuate lists in general?

(1) How to punctuate lists in general? (2) also, what case to use? In the case study, signal comparison could be used for: • signals from redundant channels of emergency stop button, • output ...
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Why is writing “$1” correct but writing “%100” isn't?

It seems like "%100" should be correct if "$1" is correct.
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71 views

Help with sentence: don't come in

Which of the following is correct: 1) Don't come in, I'm busy. 2) Don't come in; I'm busy. 3) Don't come in. I'm busy. 4) Don't come in I'm busy. And why?
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Question mark usage/position when sentence ends with a declarative quotation?

Who said "I am hungry?" The quotation is not a question, but do I put "my" question mark there anyway? This is related to, but not the same as Position of question mark when sentence doesn't ...
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1answer
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Use of “only” and word-order

I'm writing an automobile website and some of my paragraphs contain the word "only". I understand the following. As far as I'm aware, this is right: Only the Volkswagen Polo, Golf, Passat, Passat ...
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Italics and punctuation

This might be a tad off-topic, but I am looking for an English-specific answer. When I’m using italic text to denote emphasis or a quotation, should the italicisation extend to the punctuation ...
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How is punctuation used after dashes?

I use em dashes frequently to break up random or ancillary thoughts in my writing. However, I'm uncertain how to deal with punctuation after an em dash when my sentence continues. For example, which ...
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What's the rule for punctuating quoted words or phrases?

Please bear with me as I am not an English expert, only an aspiring amateur! I'm mostly aware of the rules regarding punctuation and quotes. Something like the following sentence makes sense to me: ...
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340 views

When denoting a company name, followed by a strap line, what punctuation mark should I use?

When writing out a company name, which would you use: Company Name: Strapline Company Name - Strapline Company Name – Strapline Company Name, Strapline Or is the correct one ...
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Is this correct English? What should one do when you're supposed to have *two* punctuations at *one* position?

This is the first sentence of which ground-breaking document: "The importance of a Web page is an inherently subjective matter, which depends on the readers interests, knowledge and ...
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1answer
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May en-dashes be used in sports scores?

The accepted answer to the authoritative question When should I use an em-dash, an en-dash, and a hyphen? currently has this to say regarding the en-dash: An en-dash is use to connect values in a ...
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What is the difference between `-` and `--` [duplicate]

Possible Duplicate: When should I use an em-dash, an en-dash, and a hyphen? Is there any difference between: - and -- or in some cases, a long dash I have seen these two used lots of ...
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2answers
666 views

Is it “after 9-hour drive” or “after 9 hour drive”?

The sentence is: "I arrived NYC after 9 hour drive." What is the appropriate way to punctuate 9 hour? and whether it is "x-hour" vs "x-hours" or "x hour"? (possible wrong tags)
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Is there any general rule of thumb that can be followed for where and when to add commas and full stops?

I always mess up with my writing by adding commas and full stops (periods) in the wrong places. Is there any rule of thumb or some other way that I can follow to avoid this problem?
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When do I use the comma?

The monitor being ill, we'd better put the meeting off. The river having risen in the night the crossing was impossible. In the above two sentences, one uses the comma and one does not. So, ...
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What is the best way to punctuate a list of questions in a declarative sentence?

In my report a need to write a list of example questions that someone might ask, but I would like to do it in a sentence rather than a separate list. Here is an example: This poses questions such ...
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4answers
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When do I use a question mark with “Could you [please] …”

A sentence like Could you please pass me the pepper shaker is not really a question. Should I use a question mark or a period to end this sentence? What about: Could you let me know when ...
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3answers
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How to use “if you will”

What is the proper way to use if you will? Here is an example. It's like riding a car, if you will. Is the punctuation right?
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Is it mandatory to use a comma before a coordinating conjunction uniting the two independent clauses in a compound sentence?

My friend and I had an argument about whether this sentence required a comma: I understand where you're coming from but I disagree. My friend insisted that there should be a comma before "but": ...
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Should there be a comma before “though” when it occurs at the end of a sentence?

Consider I don't know how outdated it is though. Should there be a comma before though, as in the following? I don't know how outdated it is, though.
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Colon use when introducing a list split across sentences

I understand that a colon should be used to introduce a list: We required three ingredients: eggs, milk and butter. However, what happens if there is a full stop between list elements? We ...
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3answers
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Use of “e.g.” — are parentheses necessary?

Is it appropriate to use "e.g." in a sentence without using parentheses? This administrative access control should provide visibility into access via multiple vectors (e.g. group access rights ...
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3answers
206 views

How to phrase a list that continually refers to the first word in the list

How do I properly write this sentence? The census shall provide the total population, its structure and spatial distribution. The second two items are dependent upon "population", but it seems ...
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4answers
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Using i.e. in parentheses

When a writer uses parentheses to define a phrase or clarify a word in a sentence, is it appropriate also to use i.e. in the parentheses? That use seems redundant to me.
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Punctuation of eye dialect

Suppose you have a sentence which concludes with the eye dialect somethin' for the word something. Where does the period go? Which is correct? This is really somethin'. This is really ...
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When should end punctuation go inside quotes?

I have been/am being taught that end punctuation should always go inside quotes. For example, you are supposed to write: Marvin thought it was "awful." The problem is I do not see how does this ...