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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143 views

Should it be: “each other's belongings” or “each others' belongings”? [duplicate]

In this sentence: I'm proud we're not one of those couples who have to snoop through each other's belongings. Is the above correct? Or should it be "each others' belongings"? Can you ever say ...
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290 views

When is there no comma after “he says”?

Having read style guides thoroughly, I am still a little confused about when you don't need a comma after "He says". I thought you always did? E.g. He said, "No, I'm not ready." But sometimes I see ...
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2answers
75 views

When do you put a full-stop after an ellipsis and are they used in reality in novels?

In some style guides, I see this mention of putting a full-stop after an ellipsis when you are stopping the paused sentence and going onto another new sentence, but when reading several very ...
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27 views

How to punctuate words we reference from other sources or that we think or say inwardly [closed]

I've read a few punctuation guides but am still having a very hard time differentiating between when inverted commas should be used over italics for certain words we reference but do not actually say ...
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36 views

Punctuation for compound quotes within a sentence

Should I put a period at the end of the first quote within this sentence: We often hear, "That's not me." or "I wasn't raised that way." OR should it read . . . "That's not me" or "I wasn't raised ...
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122 views

Long dashes between sentences

In Ludwig Wittgenstein's writings, I often see long dashes (both em-dash, and one even longer, shown in red circles). I can sense (at least I believe I do—perhaps, from the writer's point of view, the ...
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189 views

Use of commas when writing date range in a sentence

Should there be commas after 2014 in the following sentence: "From June 1, 2014 through April 30, 2015, there were 40 accidents on one stretch of road."?
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29 views

Punctuation in verb + but + verb + and + verb structure

In a sentence A homophone has the same pronunciation as another word but differs in meaning and may differ in spelling. is comma before and mandatory or optional? P.S. Perhaps different style ...
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2answers
41 views

What should be used for additional information? Comma or Semi-colon?

Which of the following is correct? My family is part of the Miami tribe; a Native American people with strong ties to territory in present-day Ohio, Indiana and Illinois. OR My family is ...
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23 views

I like X, from the … ,to the … . punctuation help

If I were to make a statement that describes attributes of something across a range such as: What I find great about apples are the variety of colours, from the sweet red ones, to the sour green ...
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28 views

Comma after “Using this” and “For this case”

I am a bit confused about using (or not) the comma in the following sentences: Using Lemma 1, we can claim that... For/in the first case, we can use... Please I need to understand the rule ...
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1answer
37 views

Usage of commas around book and poem titles [duplicate]

My English textbook, Understanding Literature, is boring. My English textbook Understanding Literature is boring. Robert Frost's poem, Mending Wall, is hard to understand. Robert Frost's poem Mending ...
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39 views

Ending a sentence with abbreviation and ellipses

When using an abbreviation at the end of a sentence, such as "etc." and a ellipses, would you use three or four periods?
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1answer
46 views

Which punctuation mark should be used here?

With those two possible values : 0 and 1, for each of the seven bits, there is a total of 128 characters that can be used in the ASCII encoding scheme. What punctuation mark should the ":" be ...
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2answers
118 views

Comma rule with 'however' - is this pedantry? [duplicate]

I have seen, on the website of an illustrious university, the use of 'however' which I always thought to be wrong. It is used twice in the same way, which makes me think it isn't a typo. Changing the ...
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2answers
122 views

How to punctuate “and my personal favorite” in a list? [closed]

I can think of three ways: There were many mottoes on the flyer: "Make love, not war", "Periods sucks, commas rule", and my personal favorite: "Save water, drink beer". There were many ...
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1answer
99 views

quotation capitalization and citation [closed]

What is the correct way to cite a quote in the middle of a sentence. This is a sentence containing a quotation, "Some random quotation mid-sentence", mid-sentence. Do you place an in-text citation ...
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1answer
52 views

Do I need a comma before “which”?

I need this flag because I need to show to others, which country I am from. Do I need a comma before "which" in this sentence?
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1answer
40 views

What is the proper punctuation and structure to place around an action that implies dialogue?

What is the proper punctuation and structure to place around an action that implies dialogue, such as the example below? Double quotations does not seem correct, because the dialogue is unspoken. ...
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1answer
75 views

Punctuation following em dash and speech mark

As I home in on the end of my first novel, I find myself vexing over punctuation and the correct use of the em dash. Having failed to find definitive answers elsewhere, I’ll get straight to the point. ...
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1answer
71 views

Ellipsis in Fiction (Four dots or no)

When using an ellipsis in fiction when you're not quoting another text, do you use three dots or four when the ellipsis follows a complete sentence? For example: "The world would be a better place ...
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2answers
61 views

Where do I place the commas? [closed]

Which would be more appropriate? First quote: Furthermore, corporations such as the American Diabetes Association offer a variety of prizes for meeting certain fundraising thresholds. or ...
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1answer
68 views

'We're the best there is at what we do.' Structure is correct?

While I instinctively know that the slogan is right, I'm not sure how to explain to folks who keep insisting there should be a comma after is. Help?
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1answer
63 views

Using Dashes with a Possessive

If you have a possessive proper noun but want to add extra detail by using dashes, how should it be written? Example: Penny - our neighbour - has blonde hair. Would any of these options be ...
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1answer
56 views

Should a pilcrow disambiguate the beginning of one paragraph?

The correct usage of the pilcrow sign "¶" (as I understand) is to begin a paragraph, or to indicate a paragraph on a page that is not laid out with ordinary paragraph line-breaks. I'm writing a ...
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2answers
70 views

Seemingly Awkward Sentence (Why would this sound best?)

Correct Answer: Yet one can hear in the music of their descendants beautiful variations on a musical sound that has survived for many centuries. Direct Quote: Yet one can hear in the music of their ...
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45 views

What is the rule with using a comma before 'as well' when it is the last two words in a sentence

What is the rule with using a comma before as well when they are the last two words in a sentence? For example: Sam pitches for the middle school team and plays various positions for the varsity ...
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28 views

Where does the punctuation belong (when the parenthetical phrase has its own!)?

This answer on a nearly identical question has some comments but no answers that seem to fully address this question, though I think this one comes close. An example: What if I make the menu for ...
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1answer
42 views

Putting commas around “in his opinion”

Is there any exception to using commas around interruptions such as 'in his opinion'? Specifically, I have the following situation, wherein I'd be left with a closed-off 'that': He chose three ...
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2answers
175 views

When a question is nested within a question: two question marks?

If you have two questions, one embedded in the other, should there be a single, final question mark covering both the main question and the nested one, or one for each? Here is an example: A) ...
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0answers
35 views

Colon or dash as a separator in a headline

I’m creating a headline (for my online digest), and I’m wondering if I should use a dash Web Animations API - grouping and sequencing animations or a colon Web Animations API: grouping and ...
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1answer
66 views

Punctuation before and within an adverb clause

I have a sentence which includes two independent elements connected by 'and' within an adverb clause. Do I still place a comma before the and? Ex: Jett's dad died when he was seven and his little ...
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3answers
980 views

Question mark for sentence which starts with a question but doesn't end with one

I'm basically looking at sentences which start with a question, and end with an explanation to it. But there may be more instances of a similar structure. Sample sentence : Can you book a room in ...
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29 views

Page/paragraph references within quotations

I work as a proofreader in a patent firm and am struggling to find a concrete answer to a punctuation problem I see almost every day. It's probably not a situation that pops up commonly in regular ...
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2answers
81 views

Slashes for hyphens in compound modifiers

Take the phrase "a joint FBI-SFPD task force" for example. According to my boss, a slash can stand in for the hyphen. I tend to disagree. Is this grammatically correct? Stylistically acceptable?
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81 views

Do I put a comma or a period after a mid-quote dialog tag?

Okay, so I have this sentence. "He's where?" Suzy demanded "And what happened to your rig? The whole front is bashed in!" As you can see, I did not put in a comma or a period after demanded ...
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2answers
154 views

How should a question ending in a statement be punctuated, as ending it in a question mark seems a little off?

In the example in the headline to this question, the statement qualifying the question makes the punctuation seem ill-fitting... Here's another example: Will you be able to make a decision on ...
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1answer
63 views

Punctuation - deleting commas

I have a very simple question. When we are writing compound sentences, it is possible to write sentences below. He was playing soccer, and while he was playing he got injured. He was playing ...
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2answers
63 views

Punctuation question: quote within a quote at the end of a sentence

This is something I've always been a little bit unclear about. When writing dialogue where a person is quoting someone else, and that quote is at the end of a sentence, I'm not quite sure how the ...
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8answers
1k views

How can I make this sentence unambiguous?

I'd like suggestions to punctuate, or if necessary, reword the following sentence, so as to give its explicit meaning, but without losing its feel. I encourage thought and discussion provoking ...
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1answer
59 views

Single Comma—how's it being used?

How is the comma being used in this sentence: "But we are not principally concerned here with sentence construction, rather with finding out what makes a proper sentence so that we know where ...
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3answers
39 views

I need help with commas and conjunctions

Is it correct to add a comma before but in the sentence below? An explanation as to why this sentence is correct or incorrect would be appreciated. If you have a weak stomach, I would not ...
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0answers
37 views

How do I deliver multiple paragraphs into one line?

I have a message that spans on multiple paragraphs but the medium I'm using allows for only one line. Is there an official way to do this? I've seen some people use a single slash (with spaces around ...
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1answer
55 views

Where does the comma go in dialogue? [closed]

"Whatever," says Peyton. I understand the comma needs to be after "whatever" to indicate that is what Peyton is saying but.. Peyton says, "Whatever." can a period go there because that's ...
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1answer
173 views

What is the origin of “Best.Boyfriend.Ever”? [duplicate]

Best. Boyfriend. Ever. I think that was the first of the type, now it's a commonplace. Some deep thinker in the copywriting department at StackOverflow just did it, What can I say but :/ omg ...
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2answers
125 views

Usage of question and exclamation marks with quotation marks in work of fiction

I am writing a novel. I have doubts how should I use question marks and exclamation marks in conjunction with quotation marks. I have written 5 separate sentences to illustrate this issue: He ...
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1answer
47 views

Quoting a password at the end of a sentence: Where to put the point?

Recent Slashdot article: They feature Wi-Fi that can't be turned off (protected, however, with a WEP password of "abcde"), an unencrypted database, and administrative access with a hardcoded ...
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27 views

Is it direct speech?

I have a question regarding the sentence below. If you say “I hate grammar,” you mean “I have a lot of difficulties with understanding rules how to use words correctly.” Is it direct speech ...
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1answer
44 views

Comma Placement When Using The Word “Though”

Should there be a comma before the word "though?" Example: I am currently working with a content writer though it would be good to find more options.
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33 views

Direct speech or not

I have a question regarding the sentence below. Before the guards can move to block your path, you hear "Let him speak." Is this direct speech? And do I need a comma after hear? The word hear ...