I always learned that the parentheses end inside the punctuation like this:

A sentence about some particular thing (with a parenthetical note at the end).

However, sometimes I find that it is necessary to have a period at the end of the statement inside the parentheses. This makes the sentence terminate oddly if I follow the same rule.

This is example one (where the parentheses contain a short list, then end with, etc.).

This is example two (where the sentence might be short, but the parenthetical note might be quite long. In fact, it may even require more than one complete sentence, which makes the end of the whole thing look weird to me because there is a period in the middle but not at the end).

So what is the correct way to punctuate a sentence that ends with parentheses in these circumstances? Sometimes, I abandon the parentheses all together, either neglecting the statement, creating a new sentence or splitting with a semicolon, to avoid the uncomfortable feeling I get when it just does not look right.

1 Answer 1


What you wrote is correct --- all of it. etc. needs a period because it is an abbreviation and it is separated from the period ending the sentence (by a right paren).

(But if you write a whole sentence as a parenthetical remark then the period ending it is inside the parens.)

Your Answer

By clicking “Post Your Answer”, you agree to our terms of service, privacy policy and cookie policy