"...on the last - 3rd day of the 3-day trip."

Is this part of the sentence correct? What punctuation should I use?

  • "on the last day of the three-day trip". We commonly use words for small numbers (e.g. smaller than 11). No need to tell the reader twice that the day is the third (of three). – Michael Harvey Oct 18 at 19:53
  • but is it grammatically correct? Is my punctuation correct? – poker59 Oct 18 at 19:59
  • You can enclose '3rd' in brackets, commas, or dashes. – Michael Harvey Oct 18 at 20:03
  • "...on the last ,3rd, day of the 3-day trip", or "...on the last, - 3rd, day of the 3-day trip", which one is correct? Sorry english is not my native language but I need to check exactly this sentence and use a correct punctuation :) – poker59 Oct 18 at 20:11
  • 1
    on the last - third - day of the three-day trip, on the last (third) day of the three-day trip, on the last, third, day of the three-day trip. I repeat - your use of figures for '3rd' and '3-day' is clumsy and inelegant, and why are you telling the reader twice in one sentence that the third day is the last day? – Michael Harvey Oct 18 at 20:20

A remark inserted as extra information, like '3rd' in your example is called a parenthetical remark or insertion, and can be marked in a number of ways:

Em dashes: I enjoyed the last — third — day of my trip. Putting spaces before and after an em dash is a matter of preference; just be consistent.

Parentheses: I enjoyed the last (third) day of my trip.

Parenthetical commas: I enjoyed the last, third, day of my trip.

Em dash


Comma usage

| improve this answer | |

You really do not need to write the word third or 3rd as the sentence is self explanatory without it. Last of a three-day trip would certainly mean the third day of the trip.

However, if you still want to write it for leaving no place for ambiguity, I would say, place them in round brackets () (also called as parentheses). Readers would know that it is an extra bit of information that they could either skip entirely or read for their own satisfaction.

[...] on the last (third) day of the three-day trip [...]

[...] on the last (3rd) day of the 3-day trip [...]

Brief information about bracket usages in English

Other alternatives:

  • Place them in Em dashes (long dashes (—)).

[...] on the last—third—day of the three-day trip [...]

[...] on the last—3rd—day of the 3-day trip [...]

NOTE: There is no space added on either sides of an em dash.

Brief information on the usage of Em dash

  • Place them in between a pair of commas (.., [ ], ..).

[...] on the last, third, day of the three-day trip [...]

[...] on the last, 3rd, day of the 3-day trip [...]

Brief information on using commas to mark off parts of a sentence

| improve this answer | |
  • You're supposed to do the research before you post an answer. – Michael Harvey Oct 18 at 20:55
  • @MichaelHarvey I was certain about the usage of round brackets and hence I had posted it. I can delete my answer if you want (I know it shows that I blindly copied your comment, but it is not the case). – Dhanishtha Ghosh Oct 18 at 20:57
  • "MichaelHarvey, for writing your name incorrectly" -- I did not see that! Spaces before and after em dashes are a matter of preference. – Michael Harvey Oct 18 at 21:33
  • I had written Micheal instead of Michael, silly me!! Thank God, @rjpond pointed it out. And I did not that fact regarding spaces. I personally always use brackets, sometimes commas and never really used em dashes ever in my life. Thank you for the guidance. – Dhanishtha Ghosh Oct 18 at 22:03
  • 2
    "I had written Micheal" - my own daughter does that. – Michael Harvey Oct 19 at 6:05

Your Answer

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

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.