Questions tagged [punctuation]

Use this tag for questions about the correct use of punctuation marks, or about using a punctuation mark instead of another one.

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21 views

Is comma discouraged in compound predicates even within long sentences?

I'm checking my new formal document with Grammarly, and feel uncomfortable seeing it suggesting I remove the comma in many compound predicates, even in longer ones. For example, the following sentence ...
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26 views

“The obvious question here is how does …” - Does this sentence require a question mark?

According to the Chicago Manual of Style Guide (17th Ed.) "An indirect question never takes a question mark." (6.69: Direct and indirect questions) "How the two could be reconciled was ...
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1answer
29 views

comma after “Firstly” at the beginning of a sentence?

A post (Comma after "of course" at the beginning of a sentence?) gives a clear rule/suggestion about the usage of comma after the transition words/phrases at the beginning of a sentence. ....
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1answer
38 views

Why are questions valid without question marks in speaking but not valid when writing?

In the case where I have What is the name of the fourth son. Without a question mark "?" in speaking it is considered a question but in writing it is not.
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0answers
16 views

Is the punctuation perfect?

He takes a few steps back and runs at the door - but just then, the door opens and he runs straight into an old lady, who knocks him down with a frying pan. Is the punctuation perfect?
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1answer
30 views

Should I use a question mark or a period here?

"Why don't you come over here? Then we could talk." Hi. I can't figure out whether it is correct to use a question mark where I have or if it should be a period instead. What is correct? Is it ...
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1answer
30 views

like he told me

a. I opened the can like he told me. b. I opened the can, like he told me to. Are both of the above grammatically correct and do they mean the same? Do they mean: I opened the can in the manner he ...
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1answer
22 views

Is the use of “both” is correct in this sentence?

Requesting someone's help, In recent times, the vast advancement in digital technology has led to dramatic improvements in both how people interact with each other and maintain and build ...
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2answers
34 views

other books, by other authors

These are the books I wrote in this subject. There are other books, by other authors, on this subject as well. These are the books I wrote in this subject. There are other books by other authors on ...
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1answer
32 views

How to correctly introduce an object

How do I correctly introduce the clause 'her mother's life' in this sentence? Should I use a colon, comma or something else? First, it is worth noting that her fear is about an object: her mother’s ...
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1answer
26 views

Use of the word 'so'

I am confused about using the word 'so'. Here is an example. I had a fever so I did not go to work. Question is, in the above sentence, do I really need a comma before 'so'?
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1answer
20 views

Should I use dashes or commas?

Which sentence is correct? 1- I worked on, and helped my friend with, many projects. 2- I worked on -and helped my friend with- many projects. I used to use commas like the first example, but now I'...
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2answers
26 views

Should “instead” always be followed by a comma at the beginning of a sentence?

I have a personal rule. If what follows "instead' is a complete sentence, I include a comma. If it's an incomplete sentence, I don't. I decided this after checking out real examples: Instead, he ...
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1answer
22 views

If I make a non-verbatim quotation (as news outlets often do in their titles), what punctuation should I use?

Federal judge Beryl A. Howell: No vote on initiating an inquiry is required. In the cases of all three presidents who faced such an action — Andrew Johnson, Richard M. Nixon, and Bill Clinton — the ...
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24 views

Gramatically speaking, should there be a comma before “or at least”?

Browsing Google books, I found out that "or at least" is almost always preceded by a comma. Example: [...] it is recommended to make the beds at right angles to the hill, or at least oblique. A ...
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33 views

what is the punctuation for “most/ first/ worst of all” and sentence start with “in”?

what is the punctuation before and after for "most of all", "first of all" and or "worst of all", when they are used at the beginning, in the middle and or at the end of a sentence? some sentence ...
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1answer
18 views

Punctuation. Comma before even

"I can still hear your voice‚ even without a phone. But you can't hear me. That's right. So what?" Why the writer used a comma before even? In some other sentences‚there was no comma before even.
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2answers
33 views

Should I put commas and periods before the ending quotation mark?

I know that it is advisable to put commas, periods, exclamation marks, and question marks before the ending quotation mark when dealing with direct speech, or quoting whole sentences. But what if I ...
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19 views

When to use a comma vs. a period before a quotation

I'm unclear on exactly when to use a comma or a period before a quotation. It's obvious if what comes before is a simple dialogue tag like "He said," but consider the following examples: Mike was ...
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25 views

Should I use a comma in this sentence before “and”?

Could you please tell me if the punctuation of the following sentence is correct: I know I would be an asset to your team and my knowledge and international experience will be a very good ...
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1answer
212 views

Commas with “so”

I am confused with the usage of so. Consider some examples from Oxford and Meriam-webster It was still painful so I went to see a doctor (Oxford). We were bored with the movie, so we left (MW)...
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2answers
23 views

English Commas to a separate non-essential part

This is a sentence from BBC. Some European countries, including the UK, lost their measles-free status and many developing countries, especially parts of Africa, Asia and Oceania are seeing ...
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2answers
68 views

The skeleton is naked of / from meat?

Which preposition is idiomatic to use in this context? This skeleton is naked of / from its meat. I mean to say that this animal / human skeleton which is from 500 years ago, is without meat / ...
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0answers
15 views

“To find a book” structure

Is comma, semicolon or full stop is needed in these sentences? If it is, when and which of these punctuations? Furthermore, I really appreciate if you name the grammatical name of the first part of ...
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1answer
22 views

Is the punctuation here correct?

the following is the result of me translating and then subtitling I am not entirely sure if I should use a comma at the end of the 1st line or even in the second line. but I chose to put it as follows....
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1answer
51 views

the early months

In the first few months**,** when he stayed at the hotel, he went to restaurants a lot. In the first few months when he stayed at the hotel, he went to restaurants a lot. In the early months**,** ...
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2answers
27 views

Punctuation after conjunction like “or” and “and”

I am wondering when we put commas, because in most situations after a conjunction we don't put a comma. Example: This must be true or at least truer than the last proposition. However, we may ...
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23 views

Do I need to put comma in this sentence

In this sentence, there are three mistakes. Is the comma after "In this sentence" necessary?
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1answer
25 views

Punctuation marks in complex sentences

In Russian, I can put a colon before a subordinate clause that clarifies something or gives a reason to what is said in the main clause. For example, I can write something like this, There was a ...
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2answers
186 views

In Russian, you can express a dialog without starting a new paragraph each time. Can you do something similar in English?

So, in my native language (Russian), you can write something like this (dashes separate lines of two interlocutors), "Hey, John!" — "Hey, Pete!" — "How's the family?" — "So far so good!" I want to ...
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1answer
36 views

using a comma after a compound phrase

a. John was talking incessantly and Bob was drinking shot after shot of vodka making me feel very uncomfortable. b. John was talking incessantly and Bob was drinking shot after shot of vodka, ...
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1answer
20 views

Comma location in: “But he has,” wailed the servant, “to be the culprit!”?

The context There is a servant who is accusing another man to be a culprit of some petty crime. I am not sure whether the comma should be there or not.(Please see the alternatives below.) First form:...
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1answer
15 views

Capitalizing the suffix “-like”

Should I capitalize the suffix -like in a title if it is hyphenated? For example: Diamond-Like Carbon Coating or Diamond-like Carbon Coating Metal-Like Compounds or Metal-like Compounds Which is ...
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1answer
31 views

Does the construction “not only … but also” require a comma?

Example sentence: She had not only lost her job(,) but was also about to fail university. A quick search on Google Books told me that most people put a comma in this type of construction. The ...
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1answer
66 views

Is there something wrong with the conjunction “but” in the second sentence of this example?

Example: Thanks for contacting our support. I'll be happy to help you with your question. Currently, our product does not support comment or review feature. That is why you're only seeing the ...
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1answer
46 views

What punctuation mark should I put after the word introduce (to emphasize, convey a pause), “Let me introduce (—/,/:) [name]”?

What punctuation mark should I put after the word introduce (to emphasize, convey a pause), "Let me introduce (—/,/:) [name]"? I would favor dash, but in English, it's used differently than in my ...
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0answers
17 views

If an adverbial is at the beginning of a subordinate clause, should I separate it both from the subordinating conjunction and the rest of the clause?

For example, here's a sentence, "What was new was that(,) now(,) the party abstained from a vote" (you can additionally comment on the "was was" structure, if you wish; I don't see anything wrong with ...
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1answer
71 views

“to use in case of emergency”

a. This is a gun, to use in case of emergency. b. This is a gun, to use only in case of emergency. c. This is a gun, to be used in case of emergency. d. This is a gun, to be used only in case of ...
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1answer
13 views

Can bracketing commas contain incomplete sentences when introduced by although, though, even though, because, etc.?

According to this university site (section dedicated to bracketing commas): There are a number of common words which typically introduce weak interruptions containing complete sentences. Among ...
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1answer
26 views

as if in a superhero movie/as in a superhero movie

a. Those kids were talking as in gangster movies. b. Those kids were talking as if in a gangster movie. (Meaning: They were talking the way they do in gangster movies.) =============================...
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1answer
22 views

“Great Leader, X” or “Great Leader X”

I want to know if that comma is necessary in this case, it kinda gives me a feeling that it should be used but I'm not really sure. They went directly to the Great Leader, X They went directly to the ...
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1answer
26 views

Is a comma required to separate an “and” from a list?

Here's an example. This is from the novel 1Q87 by Haruki Murakami. Just before noon, Tengo put on a raincoat and hat and was headed out to the local market when he noticed a brown padded ...
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1answer
48 views

Should there be a comma before too (at the end of the sentence) if the sentence already has commas?

According to many sources, like Grammarly's blog, you can omit the comma before too. This got me thinking, how about sentences like these? Come to think of it, Tom was angry, and Mark was mad too. ...
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28 views

Why is “and so” often followed by a comma even though it's a conjunction?

From this website, I found the following advice: If you have an introductory word (or two) that is being used as an adverb (usually answers the question of when, where, why, or to what degree), ...
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1answer
227 views

Is it OK to use single quotation marks around a business name?

I'm currently in the process of writing a written piece/assignment for university as a contrast and compare piece and was curious as to if using single quotation marks around a business name for ...
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1answer
29 views

Should there be two commas in the construction so … so … that (intensifier)?

Here's an example: Her deception had been so deep, so disappointing(,) that he swore never to speak to her again. Should there be a second comma there? I'm sure you need a comma if you write ...
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1answer
34 views

Why do some introductory words are always followed by a comma and others aren't?

Some examples. However is always followed by a comma. Examples. Mostly is almost always followed by a comma. Examples. Rather is 50-50, I think. Examples. (I think this is the case with so too.) ...
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3answers
41 views

Is “along the way” parenthetical in the following example?

They dated for two years. Then(,) along the way, their love started to fade. I wonder if along the way here is parenthetical or not. Is it the same as this structure? Then, without even noticing ...
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1answer
28 views

Shouldn't there have been a question mark after “do you” in this context?

I read this in Kafka on the shore: Man alive, how'd you get all that blood all over you? What the hell were you doing? But you don't remember a thing, do you. I strongly believe there should have ...
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2answers
37 views

Grammatically speaking, should I put a comma in the following introductory clause?

After having a green salad and black coffee for breakfast(,) and putting on her white cap and black hoodie, Mary went to university to meet her professor. At first, I thought I had to put a comma ...

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