31 votes
Accepted

What do you call these symbols on either side of some text?

These look like fleurons: A fleuron, also known as printers' flower, is a typographic element, or glyph, used either as a punctuation mark or as an ornament for typographic compositions.
psmears's user avatar
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22 votes

When someone spells out letters in dialogue, should they be capitalized? "P-L-E-A-S-E" vs. "p-l-e-a-s-e"

Whether in dialogue or not, proper naming of a single letter of the alphabet varies by style guide. Options include uppercase, lowercase, in quotes, bold, or italics: Chicago Manual of Style (CMOS) ...
Ellie Kesselman's user avatar
18 votes

What do you call these symbols on either side of some text?

In typography, these ornaments are called ❦ dingbats ❦ Here are some: Image source: Beyond the Bullets: 6 Great Uses For Dingbat Fonts
Tinfoil Hat's user avatar
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11 votes

How would you name the different types of periods? ~ Translating ‘punto seguido’, ‘punto y aparte’ and ‘punto final’

In English, we can distinguish the sentences within a paragraph, such as the first or opening sentence, the last or closing sentence, and often a topic sentence that states the main idea of the ...
DjinTonic's user avatar
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10 votes
Accepted

How would you name the different types of periods? ~ Translating ‘punto seguido’, ‘punto y aparte’ and ‘punto final’

As others have posted, English does not have different names for periods in different positions. However, possibly relevant: I use speech recognition software and dictate much of what I would ...
Krazy Glew's user avatar
10 votes

Use of double colon (::) as a sentence separator

As a native English speaker who has been speaking and reading the language for most of my 65 years ... I am not aware of any accepted uses in ordinary writing of a double colon. (By "ordinary ...
Jay's user avatar
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8 votes
Accepted

What is Patrick O'Brian trying to convey in this passage from Post Captain? ('Get over, you —,')

The girl is swearing; this is a dash used as a typographical euphemism that's replacing a profane word. That said, it's more common to see these used to replace individual letters ("G-d"), ...
5 votes

An introductory appositive phrase?

A non-defining renaming appositive (†and that is the default reading here, even though there were obviously two grandfathers) is a parenthetical, and of the five types of offsetting punctuation ...
Edwin Ashworth's user avatar
5 votes

When someone spells out letters in dialogue, should they be capitalized? "P-L-E-A-S-E" vs. "p-l-e-a-s-e"

Very few of the of style guides I consulted offer advice on punctuating words intended to be read phonetically letter by letter. From The Chicago Manual of Style, sixteenth edition (2010): 6.77 ...
Sven Yargs's user avatar
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4 votes

Which format is most common for representing a number range in U.S. punctuation style and in British punctuation style?

Style advice on how to punctuate a numerical range intersects with style advice on whether to spell out numbers or use numerals. To keep the coverage here shorter than it otherwise would be, however, ...
Sven Yargs's user avatar
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4 votes

What do you call a symbol "—||—" for repeating something that has already been written? Does it have a name at all?

FumbleFingers commented: I'd say it's just a somewhat florid / ornate (non-standard? idiosyncratic?) ditto mark.
4 votes
Accepted

Which punctuation is best for connecting the latter longer clause in this sentence, or is the comma splice okay?

According to Huddleston & Pullum (2002), when only is used in this way (to mean "but"), it behaves in some respects like a coordinator and in some ways like a preposition with a clausal ...
alphabet's user avatar
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4 votes

Punctuation when 'another' refers to a modified noun

The form without commas isn't incorrect, but it implies there are at least three kitchens in the narrative: In the main kitchen, X happened; in one of the smaller kitchens, Y happened; and, in ...
Tevildo's user avatar
  • 1,052
4 votes

Use of double colon (::) as a sentence separator

In logic and mathematics, :: is an analogy symbolism operator.  It's used to express a correspondence or comparison, and related questions, such as: dog : puppy :: cat : ? …which is read as: “Dog is ...
gidds's user avatar
  • 2,775
3 votes

Sentence Structure Question (Is it acceptable?)

That's a perfectly good sentence, and the some doing this, others doing that structure is often used. Animals adapt to the change of seasons differently, some hibernating during the winter when food ...
TimR's user avatar
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3 votes
Accepted

How do you use single quotes and possessive apostrophe on same word?

I agree ‘Open AI’'s doesn't look sleek and the two adjacent punctuation marks might be mistaken for a typo. Is there a reason why you must use the possessive apostrophe? The ‘OpenAI’ ChatGPT 3.5-...
Mari-Lou A's user avatar
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3 votes
Accepted

How does one properly hyphenate compound adjectives that are locations?

I have encountered versions of this issue many times over the years in my editing work. The most common instance involves "Washington DC based" (rather than "Denver, Colorado based,&...
Sven Yargs's user avatar
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3 votes

When and where did * become “splat”?

The name “splat” for the * character was coined by Don Woods, Jim Lyon and/or an unnamed friend. Woods and Lyon are the authors of INTERCAL, the first programming language that was designed to be ...
Gilles 'SO- stop being evil''s user avatar
3 votes

What's the difference between double quotes and single quotes when quoting?

Just to be clear, no quotation marks are necessary or appropriate when paraphrasing. Either kind of quotation mark explicitly mean it's a direct quotation; if you're paraphrasing, you should not claim ...
Mental Nomad's user avatar
3 votes
Accepted

Can I place a modifier after a colon?

If you are writing a literary piece, you can do anything you want, as long as you are understood. It is indeed not idiomatic to separate the verb phrase from its modifier by a colon. However, your ...
fev's user avatar
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3 votes
Accepted

Are "compared with" and "compared to" participle phrases?

The number of people who regularly eat fast food was much higher compared with the prior year. The italicized part is most certainly a past-participial clause (or phrase if you prefer). If it were ...
DW256's user avatar
  • 8,705
3 votes

How would you name the different types of periods? ~ Translating ‘punto seguido’, ‘punto y aparte’ and ‘punto final’

This isn't really a concept that English speakers find necessary to name, but one term you could use for punto y aparte would be "paragraph-final period". For punto final, you could use &...
Acccumulation's user avatar
2 votes

Oxford Comma Conventions

English is inherently ambiguous and no amount of punctuation can solve this. Ever notice that the examples on the internet showing how one style is better than the other are invariably contrived? In ...
Jon Ericson's user avatar
2 votes

Appropriate punctuation for removing letters in offensive words

It's a matter of choice. The AP style guide recommends hyphens If a full quote that contains an obscenity, profanity, of vulgarity cannot be dropped but there is no compelling reason for the ...
Stuart F's user avatar
  • 9,330
2 votes

What do you call a symbol "—||—" for repeating something that has already been written? Does it have a name at all?

As Fumblefingers noted, this is a form of ditto mark. Wikipedia notes that the form -----"----- is used in Russian, Swedish, and Norwegian. Also, some extension of Latex can do these
GEdgar's user avatar
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2 votes

Hyphenation in compound adjectives like "in demand" skills, "on-call" service

As I noted in a comment posted beneath the question almost six years ago, it is extremely common for writers to omit the hyphen in situations such as "Cooling has become one of the most in demand ...
Sven Yargs's user avatar
  • 163k
2 votes

What do you call these symbols on either side of some text?

Sometimes, the term arabesque is used for such decorative elements.
Hagen von Eitzen's user avatar
2 votes
Accepted

Why are quotation marks omitted from this passage from a book from 1897?

This is a matter of style, and The Chicago Manual of Style addresses this at: 13: Quotations and Dialogue 13.43: Unspoken discourse Thought, imagined dialogue, and other internal discourse (also ...
Tinfoil Hat's user avatar
  • 16.5k
2 votes
Accepted

Should there be a comma after the word "and" in this sentence with a subordinate and indendant clause after the word "and"?

The use of the comma is a matter of style, and there are as many places to put a comma as there are styles. The Chicago Manual of Style, for one, addresses your situation in the second scenario (two ...
Tinfoil Hat's user avatar
  • 16.5k
2 votes

An introductory appositive phrase?

An appositive appearing at the beginning of a sentence is generally nonrestrictive (nonessential, nondefining, etc.). In answer choice C, such an appositive is followed by a comma, confirming that it ...
MarcInManhattan's user avatar

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