Punctuation Is Your Friend
Punctuation. What is it?
Punctuation marks are special signs (e.g: full stops, commas, exclamation points) which help you understand what you're reading.When you read out loud they also show you where to pause and when to raise or lower the tone of your voice. It helps other people understand what you are saying.Listed here are some of the most important punctuation marks. You should be able to recognise these and know how to use them correctly in your writing.
A full stop is used to mark the end of a sentence.A full stop is sometimes used to mark a short form of a word such as an initial.Also known as a 'period'.
A comma is used to mark a pause between different items in a list.
Use as a pause or an interval.
A comma is often used to separate two phrases within the same sentence.
A comma is used to mark the beginning and the end of a phrase which interrupts the flow of a sentence.
A question mark is used at the conclusion of a sentence that asks a direct question.It is not used at the end of an indirect or reported question.
An exclamation point at the end of a word, phrase or sentence to indicate forceful utterance or strong feeling, such as surprise or rage. It can also follow an order given to someone. Also called an exclamation mark
Brackets are used to separate a comment or phrase from the rest of the sentence.The bracketed word, phrase, or sentence may amplify the meaning or be explanatory. Or it may contain a remark or passage that departs from the theme.
A hyphen is used between the parts of a compound word or name (to join two words that are normally separated) or between the syllables of a word (especially when divided at the end of a line of text).
A semicolon marks a longer pause than a comma to indicate a major division in a sentence. Used to create a more distinct separation between clauses or items on a list than is indicated by a comma. It separates statements which could stand as sentences on their own and are usually of similar importance, but are not linked with a conjunction.
A dash is used in place of a semicolon to mark a pause in a more dramatic way - to create an abrupt break or pause in a sentence or hesitation in an utterance.Two dashes can used instead of brackets to separate a piece of information from the rest of the sentence.A dash is written very much like a hyphen. The difference being the dash is longer, and has a gap on both sides of it.
Quotation marks, also called Inverted Commas, are placed on either side of words and the punctuation that goes with them, to show that someone has spoken or of a text directly cited.Quotation marks can be put around a word or phrase to make it stand out from the rest of the sentence.Quotation marks can be written in one of two ways "either" - 'or'. "Sometimes this way is used to show speech" and the other one is use to 'draw attention' to a word or phrase.
An apostrophe used to indicate the omission of one or more letters. It can be also be used the same way with numbers. For instance to denote a calendar year: instead of 1998 it could be written as '98.An apostrophe is used before or after an 's' at the end of word to show who owns something. When you use its to mean the owner of something you do not write an apostrophe.An apostrophe also shows the plural of a number or letter of the alphabet, or a word which does not normally have a plural.