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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1answer
17 views

How do I use commas in the following sentence

I am confused about proper usage of commas in the follow sentence. An engineer works for 13 hours a day, which is uncommon among factory workers, who work only for 10 hours a day. I believe the ...
0
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1answer
78 views

What is the correct punctuation to use in the following complex sentence?

Understanding this sentence does, of course, rely heavily on the contextual information provided by my essay. However, I am unsure if I have punctuated this sentence correctly or at all in the right ...
12
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5answers
2k views

Which type of comma is used here?

I was reading a book called "The Penguin Guide to Punctuation" by R. L. Trask. It seems that the book doesn't explain all the uses of comma. It says "There are four uses of the comma, called the ...
0
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2answers
47 views

do you use a comma when telling/asking people/things? [duplicate]

do you use a comma when telling/asking people/things? For example(s) Do you want to go eat tomorrow, Nathan? Check me out, Nathan. Commas, people, commas! Just sent you a message, Nathan. Just sent ...
0
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1answer
22 views

Greeting Anniversary Celebrators [on hold]

Do you write " Happy Anniversary Jane & Henry!" or "Happy anniversary, Jane & Henry!"
2
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2answers
2k views

…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 ...
0
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0answers
12 views

Punctuating around parenthesis at the( end of a sentence) [duplicate]

How do you punctuate around parenthesis (at the end of a sentence). That is the right format if I remember right. Am I right?
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3answers
39 views

Comma after 'is'? [duplicate]

Is it correct to place a comma after 'is'? Please, no recast. The question is, where do we get the money to pay for it?
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2answers
62 views

How do I mention a video game in a formal piece of writing?

What is the proper convention for mentioning the title of a video game in a formal research paper? Would I place the title in quotations, like the name of a short story ("Myst"), underline it, like ...
0
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0answers
18 views

If you use semi-colons to separate quotes, do you use a period at the end of the sentences within the quotes?

Here is the sentence in question: The worst scenario is when your friend refuses to bare any responsibility for their cancellation: “We weren’t really sure we were meeting tonight, were we?” ; “Good ...
0
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0answers
16 views

Does the punctuation work in these specified ranges?

As a matter of style, could these pass muster to you in terms of conciseness and punctuation - yes or no? I think they are clear and uncluttered. 5-10 year olds 5-10 year old prodigies 10-15 year ...
1
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0answers
60 views

How would I instruct a reader to push a button with an ellipsis at the end? [migrated]

I am writing some documentation and want to instruct a user through a process. During the process the user should click a button to open another screen. I am unsure how to document this as the ...
0
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1answer
33 views

Larry Trask says commas should not come after dialog tags - do you agree? [on hold]

Larry Trask says: "[A] quotation is set off by quotation marks and nothing else. A sentence containing a quotation is punctuated exactly like any other sentence apart from the addition of the ...
0
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1answer
19 views

list of commas after not

I am confused by the meaning of the following sentence: This is only valid when the reservation status is not cancelled, departed, in-house. what's the scope of the not in this sentence? Just ...
0
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0answers
18 views

Can [sic] be used to show an omission or error in punctuation? [duplicate]

Can [sic] be used to show an omission or error in punctuation? Eg: Original: He was, happy to get a raise. Revised: He was [sic] happy to get a raise. There shouldn't be a comma after 'was'. ...
0
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2answers
32 views

Which punctuation is correct?

Which of the following has the correct punctuation: Where this agreement usually ends, however, is on the question of, "does this Act go far enough?" Where this agreement usually ends, ...
12
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3answers
4k views

Punctuation with units

I remember reading somewhere that if a unit is abbreviated as one character, there must not be a space between the number and the unit (e.g., 5m, 26K). If the unit is abbreviated as two or more ...
5
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4answers
174 views

Is it acceptable to use a single hyphen as a dash (as the BBC does)?

Is it acceptable to use a single hyphen as a dash (as the BBC does)? Example from BBC News: Venezuela - a major oil producer - has been heavily affected by the fall in oil prices on ...
0
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0answers
36 views

Why is there no comma before 'eg' and 'etc.' in this BBC style guide example?

The BBC Style Guide uses this sentence: Beware of words that have different meanings for US and UK audiences eg: 'slated', 'suspenders', 'pants' etc. My question: Why is there no comma before 'eg' ...
8
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3answers
3k views

How do I refer to a word?

When writing, I sometimes want to refer to a word, as opposed to its meaning. For example: when correcting someone's grammar or semantics (there versus their), or when pointing out exemplary ...
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1answer
34 views

Interrupted quotations in BE and comma placement

In BE, have I punctuated correctly the two bulleted sentences below? "That", he said, "is a lie." Comma goes outside the introductory quote above because the original sentence is: That is a lie, ...
1
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1answer
50 views

Capitalization in direct speech without quotation marks

My question has been largely answered in the discussion linked to below. However, one question remains: in mid-sentence hypothetical direct speech without quotation marks, what is preferable ...
0
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0answers
23 views

Not a duplicate - Different question altogether regarding comma placement inside/outside of quote marks in BE

From proofeditright.com: The exception to this rule is in UK English where the comma and full stop/period go inside for a complete quoted sentence; otherwise, they are placed outside (to show they ...
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0answers
25 views

Quote Marks and Placement of Full Stop in British English [duplicate]

In British English, should the ending punctuation in the following example be ."' or ".' 1 or 2 below? (1) Jake said, 'I overheard Nancy say, "I am going to ask Marty for a divorce."' (2) Jake said, ...
2
votes
1answer
62 views

Ergative with Because [closed]

Are these punctuated correctly and is the parenthetical reasoning for each valid and sound? She's not running for class president, because she is scared. (= comma before "because" means she is not ...
6
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3answers
49k views

Comma before “including”?

Does this sentence require a comma before including? He has written on a range of moral issues including poverty, globalization, and euthanasia.
0
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1answer
27 views

comma before “though” when ending a sentence — is it necessary?

Two Oxford dictionaries contradict each other (see below). In your opinion, is it necessary to use a comma before though when it ends a sentence? Oxford Dictionary of English I was hunting ...
0
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1answer
34 views

punctuating more than one sentence within em dashes and parentheses midsentence

I cannot recast the following sentence. Is it punctuated correctly, i.e., the ending period, midsentence, before the second em dash? The department's philosophy -- When in doubt, let them out. ...
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votes
1answer
42 views

Comma after full date? [duplicate]

Is it okay to delete the comma after '1969' below ? Joe said, "February 7, 1969[,]is my date of birth."  And can we delete the comma after 'Indiana' and '2015' below? Lisa reported, "The Gary, ...
0
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2answers
45 views

Should we use a comma, a semicolon or a dash before “trust me”?

Should we use a comma (as shown below), a semicolon or a dash before "trust me" in the first example below, and after "trust me" in the second example below? "I don't think he'll last another year ...
2
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2answers
2k views

Proper Apostrophe Usage with Initialisms: CCS' or CCS's?

I work with a company whose name is frequently reduced to an initialism (acronym). Let's say the name is "Cool Computer Systems" (CCS). I am engaged in an ongoing, bloody battle with the marketing ...
0
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0answers
10 views

… for the reaction to, and prevention of, waste, loss and theft. (Commas correct?) [duplicate]

Is the comma correct after "to" and after "of" as shown below? Should a serial comma be inserted after "loss"? I cannot rephrase. Herb is responsible for the reaction to, and prevention of, waste, ...
0
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1answer
28 views

Is it correct to use a comma in the following case?

The detectives couldn't help each other. Perhaps this "madness"—despite coming from the same source, investigating crime scenes—was different for each of them. I'm not sure whether the comma ...
0
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4answers
4k views

Punctuation of sentence ending with the word “period” for emphasis

I really enjoyed The Dark Knight Rises and want to send a grammatically correct tweet about it. Unfortunately correct punctuation of the following eludes me: In other news The Dark Knight Rises ...
1
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2answers
37 views

joint venture agreements OR joint-venture agreements

Are there any issues hyphenating "joint venture" as a modifier? e.g., "joint-venture agreements" or "joint venture agreements"?
0
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2answers
35 views

Comma needed before a sentence-ending “then”?

Do I use a comma before "then" in this example? Joe said, "If she plans on going, I won't be there, then."
0
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0answers
12 views

Is this sentence punctuated properly--i.e., the question mark outside the ending quote? [duplicate]

Is this sentence punctuated properly--i.e., the question mark outside the ending quote (after the exclamation point)? Did she scream, "Go to hell!"?
0
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1answer
45 views

Thanks & Thank you followed by a comma or a period as a complimentary closing? [duplicate]

If we use the words "Thanks" or "Thank you" (on a line by itself) at the end of a correspondence -- in the absence of a complimentary closing (such as "Sincerely,") -- do we follow "Thanks" and "Thank ...
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0answers
20 views

Is it “she is a friend of Jennifer” or "of Jennifer's? [duplicate]

Is it "she is a friend of Jennifer" or "she is a friend of Jennifer's"? Is the apostrophe-s needed?
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0answers
40 views

Avoiding hyphens completely

Is there any scenario in which a hyphen cannot possibly be avoided? In most common uses of the hyphen, it can be replaced by a space or diaeresis, or could simply be removed without replacement, ...
5
votes
8answers
4k views

Em dash vs semicolon: which is more appropriate in the following examples?

I am very confused by these, and even when I understand other people's usage of them I find it difficult to know when to employ them myself. For this reason, I am trying to make my own examples and ...
0
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3answers
56 views

Help me with punctuation, please! [closed]

How should one insert the punctuation in the text below: We were informed a complete set of dishes consists of these items cups saucers and plates bowls are not included.
7
votes
2answers
650 views

Meaning of 'stabs-sick eyes'

From "Red Wind" by Raymond Chandler: He lowered them slowly and looked at the man on the floor. The man's neck was twitching a little. His eyes moved in short stabs-sick eyes. "Sure it's the ...
4
votes
3answers
135 views

Illegal Comma to Enhance Clarity [closed]

A while back, I coined a well-known InfoSec rule: AviD's Rule of Usability: "Security at the expense of usability, comes at the expense of security." Recently I received a comment pointing ...
1
vote
1answer
44 views

“mid” without a following hyphen in these words?

The Chicago Manual, 16th edition, says that "mid" is followed by a hyphen only if a capitalized word (mid-Atlantic) or a number (mid-1950s) follows. That said, I believe that all of the following ...
1
vote
1answer
182 views

The Copyeditor's Handbook says this is not a suspended compound [closed]

The Copyeditor's Handbook says: In a phrase like "ten-to-fifteen-minute traffic delays," the "ten to fifteen" constitutes a unit — an approximation of length of the backup — and it is therefore not ...
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votes
2answers
33 views

comma needed after conjunction 'and' that separates 2 independent clauses? [closed]

Do we need a comma after the conjunction "and" below? The umpire made a bad call, and, in the interest of fairness, he reversed his decision. I think that the following sentence is better with ...
1
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0answers
56 views

Comma, dash or colon to introduce a person's name at end of sentence?

Without recasting, which is the best form to use to introduce the individual at the end of the sentence? Should it be a comma, an em dash or a colon? Are all correct, and what is your preference? (1) ...
0
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1answer
25 views

Do nonrestrictive appositives always require commas? [closed]

In the following example, I have one wife, one daughter and one son. (1) My wife, Angie; my son, Mike; and my daughter, Danielle, will be at the picnic. I think the semicolons are very technically ...
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votes
1answer
32 views

Double quotes for plurals of words, letters and phrases

Are these within the realm of possibility -- that is, forming the plurals of letters, words, phrases, and numbers as I've done below? No suggestions for italicizing, please. "is"s, "as"s, "was"s, ...