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112

“That seems like an odd way to use punctuation,” Tom said. “What harm would there be in using quotation marks at the end of every paragraph?” “Oh, that’s not all that complicated,” J.R. answered. “If you closed quotes at the end of every paragraph, then you would need to reidentify the speaker with every subsequent paragraph. “Say a narrative was ...


22

That's what I'd call hijacking the conversation: VERB [WITH OBJECT] 1.2 Take over (something) and use it for a different purpose: the organization had been hijacked by extremists MORE EXAMPLE SENTENCES The public power belongs to everyone and when majorities hijack it for sectarian purposes they act oppressively. Where ...


18

The lack of closing quotation marks is a convenient clue for the reader that the quotation goes on beyond the end of the paragraph. The addition of quotation marks at the start of each paragraph within a multi-paragraph quotation ensures that a casual or forgetful reader is reminded that the paragraph he is reading is (part of) a quotation, which he might ...


14

The rule is in place to allow for successive dialog. Two quoted paragraphs in succession with no end quotation mark in the first paragraph are a continued sentiment stated by one person that requires a paragraph break, whereas if there were an end quotation mark, the two paragraphs would be quotes said by different people. Its primary purpose is in ...


14

A corresponding conversation in English might go something like this: ― You should get yourself a girlfriend! ― A girlfriend? What’s that?! It’s more sarcasm than irony, and the reply is often “deadpanned”.


14

When you are quoting multiple paragraphs, closing quotations go only at the end of the entire quotation. Beginning quotes should be placed at the beginning of each paragraph, though; otherwise it would be hard to tell at a glance that the quotation was still ongoing. Common Errors by Brians (one of my new favorites) says it this way: When quoting a long ...


14

The show you're talking about, Deadwood, was pretty famous for its language anachronisms, especially when it came to swearing. (A coincidence that one of its main characters is named Swearingen?) From "Talk Pretty" on Slate: In interviews, [David Milch, the creator and show runner of Deadwood,] has insisted that the show, particularly the flamboyantly ...


14

In the 1800s a hand job seems to have referred to a specific printing/bookbinding process done by hand. From Annual Report of the State Board of Arbitration of Illinois, Volumes 1-5: Q. What do you say as to competition in this particular line, hand job work, book and job work, what effect, if there is any, would such towns as Decatur, Jacksonville. ...


13

There is an idiom, stealing someone's thunder To use, appropriate, or preempt the use of another's idea, especially to one's own advantage and without consent by the originator. Similarly steal the spotlight to get attention for oneself. Ann always tries to steal the spotlight when she and I make a presentation [thefreedictionary.com] And steal ...


10

Another idiomatic option (at least in British English) would be: You should get yourself a girlfriend. Sorry, never heard of it. The use of the impersonal pronoun "it" is part of the humour; it indicates that the speaker not only has no girlfriend, but doesn't even understand the concept that a "girlfriend" might be a type of human being.


8

Your capitalization of what you call a sentence violates the convention whereby a question mark indicates the end of a sentence. According to that same convention, your query text is actually three separate sentences. That's why MS Word's grammar checker is nagging you.


8

J.E. Lighter, The Random House Historical Dictionary of American Slang (1997) reports that "hand job" in its sexual sense goes back to 37: hand job n 1. an act of masturbation, usu. by one person on another who is a male.—usu. considered vulgar. [First citation:] 1937 [Pietro] Di Donato Christ in Concrete 107: Then ... go into the cellar and do the ...


7

Short answer: Yes. “I care not” is idiomatic, but usually only as a standalone phrase. It has a slightly archaic feel to it, which makes it sound formal, which again makes it sound humorous. It is very common to use words or phrases from an inappropriate register to convey humour. It is not uncommon to hear something like this: They all say my new ...


6

The first is known as 'direct speech', the second as 'reported speech'.


6

Thinking back, I believe coloured was originally a euphemism, used to avoid the word black which British people thought, probably correctly at the time, was offensive. I believe the demise of coloured as an acceptable term dates from the emergence of black, mainly from the American black community, as a term of pride. With the growth in the use of black, I ...


5

Neither. The right word here is "did": Haha. I'm glad you did! "I'm glad you have" would work if the first sentence were: "I have had ..."


5

OP's second version is standard usage, which is why @Barrie calls it the "uninverted form". But note he's only referring to inversion of subject - verb (the object here being the quoted speech). The most common structure for English sentences is subject - verb - object... Joe said "The sky is blue". ...and the most common "sentence inversion" is ...


5

The quote, if you take out the contraction is: I am not going to kill -spoiler-, Ben. You are. This is correct and idiomatic. It's echoing... am --- are If it had read: I will not kill -spoiler-, Ben. Then it would read: You will.


4

If you want to turn the sarcasm back on the person giving obvious advice, you could say something like A girlfriend? I didn't get the memo. or A girlfriend? I must have missed a meeting! or A girlfriend? Gee, why didn't I think of that? Any of these implies that the advice is so obvious that the person giving it is either stupid or callous ...


4

Mostly they're not recorded. They're called Hesitation Markers, or various equivalent names. They are the various sounds people make when they're hesitating to think of what to say next, or to remember a word, or just because they've drawn a blank. Emitting one of these markers signals an intention to hold the floor, and to try to keep one's conversation ...


4

Both may be used after what is said, but only the uninverted form is normally used before what is said.


4

As I understand things, you place a comma after the interruption if the first quotation was not a complete sentence, and a period if it was. The rule really is as simple as you inferred. The stylistic element comes in where you have to decide how you would punctuate a quotation if it wasn't to be broken. By example: "My most worthy adversary, we meet ...


4

"Hand job" appears to date only to the 1940s, so it would not likely have been in use in the 1800s. http://www.etymonline.com/index.php?term=hand+job


3

"Not unless the second part of the quote starts a new sentence," J.R. said. "In that case, you'd start with a capital letter. "However, if both halves are part of the same sentence," J.R. continued, "then the second half begins with a lower-case letter." See Rule 4 at the Purdue OWL: If a direct quotation is interrupted mid-sentence, do not capitalize ...


3

It may have something to do with the archaic practise of: - “Using a “quotation mark at the “beginning of every line “of the quoted text. This “practise was actually “pretty commonplace during “the Georgian and Victo- “ian Eras.” See, for example, this 1759 edition of The Monthly Review on Google Books. (cf. Wikipedia article)


3

It’s customary to use inversion only if the attribution follows the quote, not if it precedes it. So: John said, “I am going to the bank.” “I am going to the bank,” said John.


3

The quotation actually occurs as a part of this exchange between Miss Innes (the narrator of the story) and Mr. Jamieson (a detective), following a remark by the detective that might be construed as humorous but that has agitated Miss Innes: "I have always heard," I said drily, "that undertakers' assistants are jovial young men. A man's sense of humor ...


3

He is talking about oppressed people generally, but he has dropped the pronoun. The expanded version being "You can't say no forever, right?" Captain America clearly prefers "you" to "one" as the gender-neutral indefinite pronoun. See http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/One_(pronoun)


2

John told Sean to let him help him. I realise that creates ambiguity as to who was going to help who, but the context would probably sort it out.


2

Interlocutors: The persons who take part in a dialog.



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