How would embedded quotations be used when quoting from passages/sources within an essay? What would be the difference between normal quotations and embedded quotations?

  • 4
    Can you give an example of what you mean? I'm not clear about what distinction you are asking about.
    – Colin Fine
    Sep 28, 2010 at 15:47
  • 3
    “embedded quotations” probably means quotations within quotations
    – nohat
    Sep 29, 2010 at 21:16

2 Answers 2


Simply change the double quotes in the source text into single quotes to indicate that it is an inner quotation. Otherwise there is no difference.

(Note that if you are writing, say, a research paper, you might want to quote the original source of the quote as well in, say, a "works cited" page. That depends on a ton of things though)

  • 1
    What happens when we have 3 layers? How do we write a quotation mark in an inner quotation mark?
    – Pacerier
    May 24, 2012 at 18:14
  • @Pacerier: I think that's generally just a bad idea. I don't think there's any kind of a standardized means of doing that. Possible solutions would be to go back to double quotes for the second level deep inner quote, or to use single quotes for that inner quote as well. May 24, 2012 at 18:18
  • But we can't use the same inner quotes within inner quotes otherwise that would look like it's ending that inner quote.
    – Pacerier
    May 24, 2012 at 18:29
  • @Pacerier: Not really -- it's usually fairly obvious to the reader what's going on. It's not like this has to be read by a machine or anything like that. May 24, 2012 at 19:37
  • 4
    If you have inner inner quotes, you go back to double quotes. If you have more than three layers of quotes, you keep alternating. Jun 10, 2012 at 12:51

First: you need to use the quotation mark. Then put a space. Then use an apostrophe. Example: " 'Tom!', yelled Sally."

  • 1
    Why? Can you explain all of your suggestions better and back them up with sources and support? As it stands, a passerby may see this as opinionated.
    – Hank
    Feb 6, 2017 at 20:56

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