Questions tagged [colon]

Questions related to the use of the colon (":") in English.

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Semicolon, comma, vs colon in list of size two

I have a sentence here. "The different types of switchgrass fall into two categories: upland and lowland." Can I replace the colon with a comma? Tonally, it sounds alright, but is it allowed ...
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29 views

Using colon and semi-colon in a list

I saw this sentence structure on this document online: Application for a Social Security Card. Can you tell me why there is no "period" in this structure? Where can I learn how to use a ...
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Using a colon and em dash in informal writing

I was wondering if the placement of the colon and dash in the following sentence is correct: I can't thank you enough for all you have done for me: paying my rent, taking me shopping, giving me rides ...
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Can I end a quote/dialogue with a colon?

If a character is introducing something, say, a PowerPoint presentation, how should I punctuate their speech? Can I use a colon? For example: "We have proof. Just take a look at this:" He ...
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If there is no reporting verb, would you still use comma in these constructions?

Usually, after a reporting verb, there is bound to be a comma, but what if the constructions are as follow: As if waiting for me to say that one sentence, Cornelia followed up with a request, “Welp, ...
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Is it okay to put a colon after an acronym? [duplicate]

For example, when writing a list of fields to be filled e.g. Name: D.O.B.: Address: Is the colon after D.O.B. correct?
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Can I use a question mark for a list after a colon?

For example, After the incident, I was no longer sure who to blame: Ethan, Michael, or Jake? Or is there a better way to phrase this sentence?
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10 colons in 3 sentences in the 1928 Episcopal Nicene Creed: Why? How to parse?

Below is the text from The Book of Common Prayer (1928). I have long-wondered why it is written with this punctuation. Perhaps there is no definitive answer to that question. But surely you can parse ...
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Question about capitalization after a colon, as well as a few others going on in an otherwise-unimportant sentence I wrote [duplicate]

Not exactly a life-or-death situation here, it's just a YouTube comment I'm in the process of typing in a discussion on movies, the MCU, and the MCU's version of Spider-Man. Sometimes, I write a ...
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Is my use of a colon correct. If it is correct, is the sentence itself structured okay?

The traditional narrative is composed of two types of characters: dramatic characters, which are characters that see huge changes to their personality or core beliefs, and static characters, which are ...
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Comma at the End of a List Following a Colon

Is the following sentence written correctly? Bob's three favorite colors: black, red, and blue, are Emma's least favorite colors. Specifically, I'm asking about the comma following blue.
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Question regarding combining two independent clauses using colons [duplicate]

After doing research on the proper way of combining two independent clauses using colons, I wanted to confirm that the examples below are using them correctly. From my research, the second independent ...
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Is it correct to use a comma before naming a list of items in a sentence? [closed]

The question is about the first comma use in the sentences below. I have not seen such comma-punctuation in a sentence that continues with naming several listed items. Is the first comma in these ...
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How do I introduce a quoted clause within an independent clause?

How do we introduce a quoted clause within an independent clause? For example, when talking about why we say, "John passes away or passed away." How do we write it in a sentence? My sentence ...
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-2 votes
2 answers
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Proofreading for punctuation [closed]

His movies took the world by storm and set important conversations into motion #1[,] from criticizing domestic violence #2[,] which he had been a victim of #3[,] to advocating for free speech #4[,] a ...
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Punctuation usage

Referent power means the ability of a leader to influence his followers and instill in them respect, loyalty, admiration, affection and a desire to gain approval. Do I need to use punctuation after '...
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Which is better here, colon or dash?

Their style favors texture and timbre over more familiar and comforting musical elements; there is no beat, melody, or rhythm – only techno-cacophony. Can I switch the dash for a colon, like this? ...
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Are multiple colons in technical papers allowed? [closed]

Here is the context: There is a set of parameters defined by them, x: the number of boys, y: the number of girls, and z: the overall population size. I feel the punctuation usage is kind of a mess ...
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How to interpret two clauses separated by a semicolon, then followed with a colon

If two clauses separated by a semicolon are then followed with a colon, does the colon apply to only the second clause, after which it appears, or does it apply to both clauses being considered as a ...
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How to punctuate and make concise a sentence that contains a list and then describes each item in the list?

How to punctuate and make concise a sentence that contains a list and then describes each item in the list? One possible structure of the sentence I would like to punctuate is: I do not have any ...
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3 answers
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Do you use a semicolon or colon before the word “that” in a sentence?

I just wanted to ask if a semicolon or colon is appropriate before the word “that” in a sentence. For example, I want to tell him that maybe it is the fact that I have been guarded every second of ...
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Is 'and' essential in a colon list? [duplicate]

I would like to know if an 'and' is always necessary before the last item in a colon list. Is the following correct, or should I place an 'and' before 'grapes'? The basket contained a variety of ...
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117 views

Should I use a colon after 'as'?

Do I need to place a colon after 'as' in the following sentence? The main subject of 'Animal Farm' is totalitarianism, which is defined as(:)'a system of government that is centralized and ...
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Is it okay to use 'to name a few' with a colon

Is the following sentence correct? The list had a variety of foodstuffs: oranges, apples, bananas and sardines to name a few. Is it okay to use the phrase 'to name a few' with a colon, and also do I ...
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colon followed by a question

I did some search on the Internet but am unable to get clarity on this. SET 1 Which of the following is correct? A) Have you: Ever purchased a blue car? Ever visited Hong Kong? Ever gone on a long ...
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Capitals after mdash

I would like to know if, in British English, if there is a question after emdash, do I need to start the question with a capital? for example —Do you know what this means? Also, what about a general ...
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Can I use a colon at the end of an incomplete sentence (see two example)?

Thank you for your help. Examples are provided below. Example A. Some people feel they must...: Prove their worth all the time. Put others down all the time. Example B. The pairings were as ...
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The use of colon in the middle of a sentence

Please let me know whether the below sentence is grammatically correct. I like 3 subjects: English, Mathematics, and Science, but the first one is always my favorite subject. The reason for raising ...
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Can I Use Two Colons in This Sentence?

Conversely, the substitution effect moves in the opposite direction: as the price of breakfast cereal rises, so does its opportunity cost: other goods become relatively cheaper and thus more ...
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Why this clause is dependent?

While preparing for my SAT, I encountered the following sentence: "According to a survey analysis, veterans returning to the University of Illinois had 6 one “predominating request”: an efficient ...
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385 views

Should you use quotation marks when transcribing an interview in which the speakers are identified before each quote?

I apologize if the title is unclear, as I couldn't find a great way to phrase this. What I'm asking is, which of the following would be correct? Interviewer: Good morning, thank you for joining me. ...
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3 votes
2 answers
317 views

What is the best way to punctuate titles that have subtitles with subtitles?

I am going through a few movies and I see Pokémon: Zoroark: Master of Illusions. Are that many colons appropriate? I am inclined to use em-dashes for the next subtitle, leading to Pokémon: Zoroark — ...
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To make this sentence clearer shall I use a colon?

In the following sentence as an example, the speaker meets two strangers that happen to be a fox and a cat. As he turned a corner, he came face to face with two strangers, a fox and a cat. Should the ...
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Captialization after a colon

Should I captialize the word after a colon if its a dependent clause? For example You are banned: violating our Terms and Services. OR You are banned: Violating our Terms and Services. Which one ...
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Use of semi colon or colon?

So I want to make a sentence presenting a list first and asking a question about it at the end. But I am confused whether semi colon should be used or colon should be used. I am of the view that colon ...
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Is a semicolon or colon needed after "including"?

Previous research has identified four individual factors which appear to predict this including**;** need to feel loved, need to be loved and self-esteem. Thanks everyone!
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Usage of the colon in this sentence (and alternatives) [duplicate]

Is the colon used in the following sentence correct? If so, would it be better to replace it with a semicolon or a period? As CPUs get faster and faster, it is important that the performance of the ...
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Use of Comma and Colon

I have been given the following section, and I need to identify the grammatical errors. Hawthorne physically set this short story in the town of Milford. It is a common setting for Hawthorne: a New ...
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327 views

Colon or Semicolon for ‘I’m Sorry’

I was wondering whether using a colon is incorrect if I used it as follows: I’m sorry: I only saw your message this morning. My logic for using the colon rather than the semicolon is that the ...
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Does a colon go before or after parentheses?

For example, Shopping (At Whole Foods): Shopping: (At Whole Foods) Which one is right?
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2 votes
2 answers
113 views

Use of punctuation in complex list with two sets of appositives

How would you punctuate the sentence below? Is it okay the way it is? I've never seen a sentence that introduced more than one list with a colon. I considered just taking out the colons. I also ...
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1 vote
0 answers
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Colon, Semicolon, or Em-dash

Which of the following three are correct? I would recommend reading the footnotes wherever indicated: they're quite informative. I would recommend reading the footnotes wherever indicated; they're ...
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2 answers
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The usage of colon

Can you please tell me whether or not this sentence is correct, and, if not, how can I reorganize it. Is it even possible to use a colon here, or should I just omit it? "If the main subject is ...
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1 vote
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Use of colon to elaborate upon clause

I'm wondering if sentence structures such as the following are a valid use of the colon: I don't understand your second point: Is it not said that the sky is blue? As you can see, I'm using the ...
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2 votes
0 answers
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Lists. To colon or not to colon?

As a Spanish translator, I struggle with MANY Spanish sentences that include a preposition followed by a list of numbered (e.g.) activities. The lists can be long or short. An example would be: The ...
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When is it okay for a colon to precede a dependent clause that is not a list or example?

While browsing through an ACT study guide, I have encountered the following sentence (as part of a discussion of old signs seen along the highways): After all, there they are: advertising products ...
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-1 votes
1 answer
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Colon Use or Not

I listened to the song. It went: The man in the hat is crazy. The man in the hat is.... Should there be a colon after 'went'? Or not?
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1 answer
613 views

Alternatives to the Colon

I find that I use the colon far too often in my writing. Specifically, I use the following construction too often: statement: explanation or example Here are some concrete versions of this: ...
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3 votes
1 answer
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Should a colon be used after "for example"?

I am having difficulty deciding when a colon should be used in a sentence. I have a specific example that I was unable to resolve via browsing the web The research centre will use confidence ...
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1 vote
0 answers
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What is the grammatical function of a list following a colon

My ten year old son asked the grammatical function of items in a list following a colon. Such as the sentence "There are three countries in North America: Canada, The United States, and Mexico." ...
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