I was sure that the " character is called double quotation mark and ' is called single quotation mark -- until I opened my InDesign CS6 and noticed that " is called double quotation marks (sic). Plural.

  • Is it at least grammatical and syntactically correct?
  • Is it common?

I never saw that " is referred as plural, but on the other hand Adobe is creditable company and InDesign is creditable software.

ps InDesign CS6 is from 2012 year, and since I have not tried newer versions,the wording might be corrected since then.

enter image description here

enter image description here

  • It's not a sentence, or anything like one, so it's hard (or impossible) to say whether it's grammatical, but it clearly doesn't fit the pattern of the other items in that menu.
    – Juhasz
    Jan 7 at 18:06
  • 1
    Have you looked up "quotation mark" in a dictionary? Most should define that term. If dictionary definitions are confusing or unclear and you think that someone here can clarify, then feel free to ask about that. Jan 7 at 18:09
  • @MarcInManhattan, I know what quoation marks are. :-) I simply cannot understand why Adobe decided to refer to each of the double quotation marks as "quotation marks" (plural) instead of "quotation mark" (singular). I want to understand whether this practise is widespread.
    – user90726
    Jan 7 at 18:19
  • 2
    Adobe is going against the mainstream. This is a character (singular) called a 'double quotation mark': " (they also come in left and right varieties) and this "word" is surrounded by double quotation marks. Jan 7 at 18:54
  • 1
    @jsv Yes, that's why I suggested looking in dictionaries; if you check a few, you will either get consistent answers (suggesting that that usage is fairly standard) or differing answers (suggesting that varying usages are possible). I think that that will be more authoritative than anything that someone here might say. Jan 7 at 19:20

1 Answer 1


There is variation in use, as you have found. I find both quotation mark and quotation marks equally acceptable, when referring to a single character (which may be formed of two inverted or raised commas)

However, as quotation marks tend to be used in pairs, when referring to a pair, you must use "marks":

You should enclose a direct quote in quotation marks.

You must log in to answer this question.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged .