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Questions tagged [dashes]

The dash is a family of punctuation marks which are not part of a word, but resemble long hyphens in appearance.

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Student t-distribution: why the dash

In statistics, the t-distribution is important. It is an approximation to the normal distribution. Of course we don't say "normal-distribution" (with the dash). Well then, what exactly is the ...
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1answer
30 views

Dashes in lists

As a mathematician I often have to explain the notation in my writing. For example, I write: "F denotes my favourite function, A - a beautiful set and K - an important kernel." Should I use dashes ...
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53 views

Dash after the prefix “non”

Is the hyphen that we often see in words such as "non-zero", "non-trivial", etc. optional? In case the answer is negative, is there any rule of thumb on which one may rely in order to recall when ...
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from [time]-[time]

I see people using expressions such as "join us from 10am-2pm on January 3" or "we are going from January-May." Should "from" be there since there is no "until" or "to"?
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Which do you read x' as dash or prime?

In Japan, it is occasionally said that x' should be read as eks-prime in mathematical contexts. However, there are several cases to read eks-dash. In addition, a person says that eks-dash was ...
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3answers
150 views

Should I use a hyphen, an en dash, or an em dash to define or introduce a word? [closed]

I have looked up online and studied usages for the hyphen, en dash, and em dash. I still haven't found an answer if I can define words with a dash in English. The backstory on dashes defining ...
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2answers
54 views

Is it acceptable to place a comma after the em-dash in this sentence? [duplicate]

Due to financial struggles brought on by marital struggles—or perhaps it was the other way around—, the family had to forsake it as the bank foreclosed on it. I normally wouldn't place a comma, but ...
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3answers
66 views

How would one correctly place punctuation marks in this sentence?

Moth-like, the people buzzed about: walking, driving, directing— each to their own light. I'm not sure whether each comma, colon, dash and hyphen are used correctly here. Please help! Also, this ...
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Colons vs Em dash ?

The designer envisions the game’s fundamental elements: the settings, characters, and plots that make each game unique, and is thus a primary creative force behind a video game. A) NO CHANGE B) ...
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2answers
217 views

What should I use when introducing dialogue, hyphens, en-dashes or em-dashes? [closed]

I have always use the hyphen when introducing dialogue. -I love skating, but I'm not very good at it. But I have recently been educated about the existence and use of en/em dashes. Now, I think I ...
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2answers
80 views

Should we use an em dash, en dash, or semi-colon

A sentence is causing some discussion in the office - it's about a Nylon product. We are not sure if we should use an en-dash, em-dash, semi-colon, or something else entirely. I thought an em-dash was ...
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1answer
195 views

Usage of en dash in a CV

I write the date in my résumé in the following format: 7/2017–present 4/2015–6/2017 8/2010–3/2015 Is this the right way to do it? I am asking because I also saw the following notation: 7/2017 – ...
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2answers
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I tend to overuse the hyphen as a pause, and would appreciate some feedback on this [duplicate]

An example of the way I tend to use the hyphen would be: Some people are genetically predisposed to build muscle - I am not one of them. I usually do this more often when I am in a hurry. Still, I ...
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0answers
28 views

How is a dash used in English [duplicate]

Is a dash used between words in word combinations like fill up? Or is it fill-up?
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22 views

How to punctuate character descriptions within a single clause

I want to say "Inside the bedroom John and Mary sit and talk" but include descriptions of each. e.g. "Inside the bedroom, John; a thirty year old boxer and Mary; a balding starlet, sit and talk". ...
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1answer
57 views

(un)conditional or (un-)conditional?

I want to write "conditional (mean imputation)" and "unconditional (mean imputation)" shorter, which of these 4 is the best way to do that? If multiple ways are correct, which is the most common (in ...
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3answers
2k views

Is the em dash used in formal writing?

Is it valid to use em dashes in formal writing? My teacher said it's informal to use em dashes under any circumstances, so I just wanted to make sure. I've gone through several related questions in ...
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142 views

Is this how to correctly use a dash? [closed]

I have been reading around on different websites on how to use a dash and I think this is correct but I am not 100% sure. It seems like you can use them when you need to compact a lot of information ...
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1answer
62 views

How are dashes used when referring to the work of someone? [closed]

Example: [Artist] - [Song] Is that little line supposed to be a hyphen, non-breaking hyphen, figure-/en-/em-dash, horizontal bar, minus sign or double oblique hyphen? Are there supposed to be spaces ...
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1answer
56 views

the usage of dashes before relative pronouns [closed]

I came across these two sentences: Today, his sculptures – which spin, tilt, and sway – belong to collections worldwide. Today, his sculptures – spin, tilt, and sway – belong to collections ...
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0answers
102 views

Specific Semicolon vs. Dash Case

and thanks for taking the time to read my question. I was writing an essay not too long ago, and I ended up writing a sentence that goes like this: As people convert to higher-paid jobs the birth ...
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1answer
59 views

Sentence Structure (linking)

In saying: There are a lot of benefits for the new model of transportation, the Smartcopter. How do I name the model of transportation as the Smartcopter in one sentence as shown in the example ...
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1answer
28 views

Can I make minor typographical corrections to a title in citations? [closed]

Let's say I need to cite a website or printed report with the title: Broccoli production in Ruritania, 1990-2010 with a hyphen in "1990-2010." In English typography, though, the standard indicator ...
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1answer
135 views

Is it correct to say “inter- disciplinary/national” instead of “interdisciplinary and international”?

I'm trying to be more concise with my words. Does writing "inter- disciplinary/national" to describe to my educational background make sense? If not, what's a good alternative?
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How to punctuate interrupted dialogue [duplicate]

What is the best way to punctuate interrupted dialogue? I have seen it done like this, but I am not sure if it is correct. "In my opinion the best w--" "Nobody is interested in your opinion," Fred ...
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1answer
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What do these sentences from “When Dinosaurs Roamed North Dakota” mean? [closed]

[W]e passed rolling hills with emerald green grass, farmhouses dotting acres of fields and wild, rocky landscapes. (Hillary Richard, "When Dinosaurs Roamed North Dakota", New York Times) I ...
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Semicolon followed by a dash;—What is it?

I see repeated use in numerous 19th printed texts and manuscripts, both British and American, of a semi-colon followed by an em dash. It is clearly a punctuation device that was used frequently in ...
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1answer
111 views

Necessary punctuation in sentence

There was a sentence in a released* ACT test a while back. This was the sentence. "I ride this trail nearly everyday - not on a bike, but on 'Luigi'." It seems to me that the interior punctuation is ...
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1answer
587 views

The Em Dash: Afterthought or Added Emphasis?

Whenever I read a piece of writing that includes an em dash, I'm unsure wether to read it as an afterthought or added emphasis. Here's two examples I made: The em dash being used as an afterthought: ...
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467 views

Colon or Dash for definition list?

In a definition list should I use a colon or a dash to separate the definition term (dt element) and the definition description (dd element)? Example: one of a number of things. Test: the ...
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1answer
62 views

Serial Punctuation in multiple complex clauses, with references

I am trying to edit an academic paper, with a complex sentence which includes an interpolation within em dashes. The interpolation terminates with a reference in brackets, and is also the first item ...
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2answers
582 views

are the days of using dashes over?

I ran into a sentence which I would like to share in here to prepare the context for my question. "it was shown that TBT, HBT, and HSDT1 have the same results in order to derive fundamental ...
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1answer
275 views

Is this use of en dash legitimate? [duplicate]

In the following sentence, how do you understand the en dash? Our findings are very interesting from an international viewpoint – business tourism. Is the use of the en dash appropriate here? ...
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2answers
108 views

Slashes and en-dash inside parentheses [closed]

Is the usage of slashes, en-dash, and parentheses in the following line OK? Objective: Working as a translator (English/Spanish/Portuguese–Arabic) *It's part of a resume. Thank you for your ...
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1answer
93 views

Correct grammar / style for segments that share the same (lengthy) prepositional object

I'm having trouble with a sentence that uses two (or more) prepositional phrases, which share the same prepositional object. For example, I would like to turn these two statements: A main theme in ...
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1answer
496 views

What dash should be used for attribution of authorship? [duplicate]

Say I want to mention an author and their work, i.e. The Beatles—Abbey Road or Herman Melville—Moby Dick, which dash should go betwixt the two? This question has been marked as a possible duplicate ...
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68 views

Comma usage within dashes

Could someone please explain what rule governs the comma and dash usage. Why is the dash placed after the should. Couldn't the dash be placed after the 'have'? He might – and according to plans, ...
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0answers
47 views

How do I use a dash at the end of speech? [duplicate]

How do I use a dash at the end of speech to signify an abrupt change of subject? I understand that when using an em dash, there is no space before or after the dash: George sighed. “There is ...
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0answers
39 views

When quoting someone, should I use a hyphen, en dash, or em dash? [duplicate]

When I'm quoting someone, which dash should I use at the end? A hyphen, en dash, or em dash? Plus should it be connected to the person's name? Example: "Inspirstional quote here." -Nathan Which ...
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2answers
135 views

How to properly organize grammar with complex sentence with dashes? [closed]

Alright, Im writing an APLAC paper and don't know if my word choice and more importantly grammar in the following is correct: I left my residence, embraced teary-eyed peers and entrusted my ...
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0answers
49 views

En dashes and shortened year ranges [duplicate]

I understand that typically an en dash ( – ) is used when presenting a range of numbers. For example, when representing a range of years such as "1990 – 2000." My question pertains to instances in ...
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2answers
49 views

Dashes in “st-vertex-cut” or “st-vertex cut”?

People use "vertex-cut" and "vertex cut" where I am unsure whether it should be with dash or without dash. For me, it looks nicest to have "st-vertex-cut" and then "st-vertex-cut set" without dash, ...
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1answer
56 views

How to refer to the collection of horizontal line characters?

Hyphens, dashes, n-dashes, m-dashes, and minus signs all look the same (give or take a pixel). Is there a term for this set of characters?
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0answers
56 views

Israel-Turkey or Turkey-Israel ties?

I recall back in college the teacher once noting that there is a rule for that. I've checked google and found both are used. Is there a rule for that?
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1answer
733 views

When writing an informal letter, is it advisable to use the em rule at all?

I must point out before explaining my situation that I'm an English learner. However, for this question I need the help of an expert; that's why I'm asking here and not in ELL. When writing an ...
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0answers
115 views

Punctuation in a Figure Caption (Abbreviation List)

I have question regarding punctuation in a caption of a figure. Lets say, for example, I have a figure that depicts a certain schematic. In the caption of the figure I want to list all the ...
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4answers
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Em dash and quotes

While I toss up between the em dash and the en dash, I am consistent throughout one document. However, one thing I have noticed when using the em dash is that when I write something like: Firstly, ...
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137 views

Semicolon vs dash

I'm writing a book, and one of the sentences is as follows: "They are the same today, even though it’s been nearly three weeks since I left this place-three weeks since I left the place I called home....
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165 views

ACT English question regarding dashes

From what I know, dashes are used to separate non essential clauses that adds further description to an object. This question confuses me. The correct answer is J but why? If you replace it with J, ...
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2answers
767 views

Please Help Me Punctuate This Sentence Correctly [closed]

I'm particularly interested in getting the punctuation correct, and I'd like to keep it all in one sentence. Thanks! Here's the sentence: It allows you to test on multiple browsers, and clicking ...