Questions about quotations, a group of words taken from a text or speech and repeated by someone other than the original author or speaker.

learn more… | top users | synonyms

375
votes
18answers
28k views

How do you quote a passage that has used '[sic]' mistakenly?

The usage of '[sic]' is well defined for quoting a passage that you believe has an error in it: nearest to the mistake you place '[sic]' within the quotes. For example, suppose I write a letter from I ...
3
votes
3answers
305 views

How to indicate “Our remark”?

I have a sentence: Before the Greeks, the ancient Egyptians used it (Golden Section - remark is ours) in the construction of their great pyramids. In that sentence the words "Golden Section" was ...
8
votes
7answers
16k views

What does “There but for the grace of God — goes God.” mean?

It is a supposedly witty paraprosdokian said by Churchill. But I (and possibly some other people whose first language is not English) don't get it. Can someone explain what it means? Do English native ...
1
vote
2answers
417 views

“I would often tell you.”

Can you have a sentence like ________________, I would often tell you. and the part that's left out isn't in quotes?
2
votes
5answers
645 views

How do I designate the footnotes that are mine inside a quote?

Note: sorry for cross-posting from Writers.SE, but I can't seem to get a definite answer. How do I designate the footnotes that are mine inside a quote? I tried "our note", "note ours" and "remark ...
1
vote
1answer
91 views

When would one write “con[struction]”?

A quote in a book contained the word "con[struction]." It was used just as the word construct would have been. Is con ever used as an abbreviation of construction? Would there be any other reason to ...
6
votes
5answers
343 views

Does quoting in British or American English depend on the quoted or the audience?

If you are quoting/documenting the conversation between two people — one is British and one American — do you use a consistent approach directed towards your intended audience or switch to ...
1
vote
2answers
3k views

Does a comma have to be used before a quotation?

If before the quote the word "saying" or "said" is used, does a comma always have to be used before it? When does a comma not have to be used?
15
votes
2answers
3k views

Any reference on the usage of a backtick and single quotation mark like `this'?

Why do I sometimes see a backtick with a single quote `like this'? What's the name of this usage? What are some good references so I can find more information by myself?
17
votes
4answers
10k views

Should I fix typos/grammatical errors in quotation?

When writing papers, I meet typos/grammatical errors in references now and then. Should I correct them, or leave them as they are?
2
votes
2answers
3k views

Use quotation marks for internal monologue?

In a similar vein to my previous question on styling written quotes, should I use quotation marks for interior monologue in narrative writing? It is common to use italics to denote thoughts: This ...
4
votes
1answer
8k views

Use quotation marks or italics for written quotes?

In narrative writing, should I use quotation marks or italics when I quote something someone wrote? I would go with italics to differentiate written from spoken quotes: “I know who the killer ...
4
votes
2answers
844 views

Quotations that skip paragraphs

This is a problem that has long troubled me. Imagine that I have a block of prose organized in three paragraphs. I want to construct a single quotation that contains only the first and third ...
1
vote
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 ...
1
vote
2answers
1k views

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: ...
10
votes
2answers
340 views

Is there a term that means “oft-used misquotation”?

There are some quotations that people always seem to get wrong: Alas, poor Yorick, I knew him well. [Real quote from Hamlet: "Alas, poor Yorick! I knew him, Horatio."] I have nothing to offer ...