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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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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214 views

“built-in to the library”: hyphen or no hyphen

http://web.mit.edu/galib/www/FeatureList.html says, "You can use the types built-in to the library (bit-string, array, list, tree) or derive a chromosome based on your own objects." I've sometimes ...
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Punctuation help

I need help with the correct punctuation for the following: Every empty box symbolizes a child's wish unanswered, and a dream unfulfilled. I think the construction of the sentence is more ...
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Is there a comma before “so”? What is the correct answer?

What is the correct version: Suddenly the noise stopped, so Dani, the new resident, started feeling uneasy. Suddenly the noise stopped so Dani, the new resident, started feeling uneasy.
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54 views

Is using a comma between this list of quoted text awkward/incorrect? Please help!

Is it correct to list the following examples using quotation marks and a simple space? Or would the example below need a comma in-between? For example, you might choose to say: "Thanks for asking, ...
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51 views

Whether to use a comma or not

I have been looking at many company description and I found the following two usages a) We sell a diverse range of products from books to toys. b) We sell a diverse range of products, from ...
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233 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) ...
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72 views

Question about an AP Style rule

AP STYLE RULE: If the word following a singular common noun ending in "s" begins with "s," add an apostrophe only. Based on AP's rule above, are the following bulleted examples correctly punctuated ...
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61 views

How would I punctuate a run-on sentence like this?

How can I punctuate this sentence to establish clarity without having to sacrifice cohesiveness? In general, there are four distinct castes that one could be born into: Brahmans, the highest ...
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84 views

Colon or semicolon?

We need help with colons and semicolons - and we need the definitive answer here, with examples. Here is my example: There is hardly any reason to be happy in the DPRK: the people are the most ...
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39 views

How to use “then” as a modifier

Which would you use or expect to see? "Iggy accidently caught me in the eye when he was hugging a then friend, Howard Devoto." "Iggy accidently caught me in the eye when he was hugging a, then, ...
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1answer
1k views

Can we use the abbreviation “etc” without a period/full stop?

Throughout Practical English Usage 3rd Edition (Swan, 2005), the author writes etc in a manner I can't help but wonder if it's a typo. Much/far/a lot etc more money Many/far/a lot etc ...
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Is it “midsentence” or “mid-sentence”? Onelook doesn't say

Is it "midsentence" or "mid-sentence"? Onelook doesn't say. Also, is it: mid- to late 50s mid-to-late 50s mid to late 50s I'd say, "mid- to late 50s" because "mid" is a prefix that requires a ...
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1answer
167 views

Punctuating Adverbial Speech Descriptors

This may have already been covered somewhere, though I can't find it, but I'd always thought that adverbs qualifying, describing, modifying the verb in speech delivery, required a comma before the ...
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1answer
135 views

Question mark or period?

Is this sentence a question or a statement (or other). It ends with a question, so I used a question mark. (Just ignore the tech jargon.) I get that this should show me the PID of the SIGTERMing ...
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41 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
60 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, ...
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101 views

Can one use a question mark after “Please”?

I'm imagining someone importuning another person. For example, if someone asked another person if he or she could come join them on an outing, and when the other person doesn't seem too keen on the ...
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How do I write a question that sounds like a statement?

Forgive me if the title is unclear. I am trying to understand how to write two questions, but with the latter question sounding like a statement. Examples: a) Should I go with option A, or ...
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Jack London's punctuation choice of periods instead of semi-colons

The sled was without runners. It was made of stout birch-bark, and its full surface rested on the snow. The front end of the sled was turned up, like a scroll, in order to force down and ...
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41 views

Period with Colon?

Which of these is correct (The word manager is abbreviated to Mgr): Your Line Mgr: OR Your Line Mgr.:
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26 views

Punctuation marks in use of “up to and including”

What punctuation marks (or paraphrasing) should be used to make this sentence easier to read: Releases up to and including Product v3.1 do not have this feature. Is it ok to say the following? ...
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49 views

Proper name for a hypothetical quote or rephrasing

I've seen and used a usage of quote marks that I'm not sure is correct. If it is correct, I'd like to know what it is called. If it is incorrect, I'd like to know how to punctuate it correctly. Here ...
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59 views

Semicolon usage: is this usage appropriate?

Is this usage of a semicolon grammatical? I understand that it's used to separate two clauses in a sentence, but am uncertain on the validity of its usage in this scenario Sound can be represented ...
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38 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 ...
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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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43 views

Capitalization after ellipsis

Although there does exist a related question on SE, it doesn't exactly address my issue. What that question asks if the first letter should be capitalized after an ellipsis. I have the same question ...
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35 views

Multiple types of items in parenthesis, abbreviation + reference

In a sentence how do you correctly use punctuate both an abbreviation and a reference within the same parentheses? The Carbon Footprint of imports (CFi, table 1)..
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76 views

Is the usage of this semicolon correct? Should I replace it with a colon or dash?

I am getting ready to have my first tattoo and, as a fairly strict grammarian, I want to make sure that I get it right. I plan for the tattoo to look like the following, but I'm not totally sure about ...
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72 views

double punctuation marks: one inside parenthesis and one outside

I don't seem to be able to find the answer I'm after so here is my question. Can I make a sentence and at the end of the sentence make a a startling comment in parenthesis ending with an exclamation ...