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Important Punctuation Marks

Updated on September 25, 2012

Keep these things in Mind while Writing

Punctuation is one of the most important aspects of correct expression in a language. It is marked with certain signs.

There are some important punctuation marks that always confuse us. We forget or don’t know where to use them, where is their correct place in a sentence?

Semicolon (;)- A semicolon is midway between a full stop and a comma. It is used-

- - To separate two related clauses:

Eg. Sometimes she smiles; sometimes she cries.

- - To separate a clause and a related phrase.

Ex. To err is human; to forgive divine.

- - To separate items in a list, when these are either clauses or extended phrases.

Ex. Most of students lack devotion to studies; they read only to get through; they do not cherish the value of education.

Colon (:)- the colon is used-

- -To introduce a list

Ex.- You are required to bring these things: a bed sheet, two sets of uniform and a set of furniture.

- - To introduce an explanation

Ex. My problem is: I can’t work hard in given situation.

- -To separate two contracts,

Ex. We make plans: the insincere students mar them.

Hyphen (-)- The hyphen is used

- -To join the parts of a compound word.

Ex. Mother-in-law

- - In some cases to join a word and a prefix.

Ex. Post-dated, co-opt.

Inverted Commas or Quotation Marks- Inverted commas are of two types-

- - Single Inverted Commas (‘ …..‘)

- - Double Inverted Commas (“ ……..”)

They are used –

- -To enclose all words said in direct speech.

Ex. He said, “I want to go home.”

- -To enclose titles of different genres of literature.

Ex. ‘Of Studies’ , ‘The Love Song of j. Alfred Prufrock?’

- - To emphasize a word or phrase that the writer believes is false or humorous.

Ex. Making the brain of a child the storehouse of information is called ‘education’ by some.

Brackets- Brackets are used to enclose a remark r to give a more comprehensive information.

Ex. Our university (University of Allahabad) is known as Oxford University of India.


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    • AudreyHowitt profile image

      Audrey Howitt 4 years ago from California

      Your explanations and examples are so clear!! Thank you!!

    • anupma profile image

      Dr Anupma Srivastava 5 years ago from India

      Thanks DeborahNeyens

    • DeborahNeyens profile image

      Deborah Neyens 5 years ago from Iowa

      Good tips, here. Thanks for the useful hub.

    • anupma profile image

      Dr Anupma Srivastava 5 years ago from India

      Thanks Unknown Spy for your kind visit and comment

    • unknown spy profile image

      IAmForbidden 5 years ago from Neverland - where children never grow up.

      very great reminder to always be aware and how to use punctuation marks :)

    • anupma profile image

      Dr Anupma Srivastava 5 years ago from India

      Thanks Integrity

    • profile image

      IntegrityYes 5 years ago

      That is informative. I definitely voted up.

    • anupma profile image

      Dr Anupma Srivastava 5 years ago from India

      Thanks jpcmc

    • jpcmc profile image

      JP Carlos 5 years ago from Quezon CIty, Phlippines

      Thanks for the reminder. Many of us forget how important punctuation marks are.