Punctuation

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Semicolons with Clauses

Semicolons are used to separate independent clauses in three different cases. 1. When there are no conjunctions separating the clauses. Incorrect: I like you, John likes you, too. (Semicolon needed) Correct: I like you; John likes you, too. 2. When the clauses are separated by a conjunctive adverb or other parenthetical expression set off by

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Underlining Items Which Name Themselves

Underline or italicize numbers, symbols, letters, and words which name themselves (or which are used as the figure or word). Incorrect: “Give me a C!” the cheerleader shouted. (The letter is used as a letter, it names itself.) Correct: “Give me a C!” the cheerleader shouted. Incorrect: His 2’s look like 7’s. (The numbers are

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Apostrophes with Other Contractions

When writing about years, insert an apostrophe where numbers are dropped. Examples: The winter of ’65 the ’96 Olympics In a few words and some names, o’, d’, l’, and t’ indicate abbreviated forms of the or of in various languages. Examples: o’clock L’Enfant Plaza P.J. O’Rourke Sometimes to show pronunciation in dialogue, the word

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Titles Which Take No Punctuation

Do not underline, italicize, or place in quotation marks the name of the Bible, its books, divisions, or version, or other religious Scriptures and their divisions or versions. Example: In I Corinthians the Bible says that the greatest eternal value is love. (The Bible and its book take no special punctuation.) Example: The Talmud’s tractate

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Colons with Lists

Use a colon before a list when the list is preceded by a complete independent clause. Never use a colon to separate a preposition from its objects or a verb from its complements. Some form of the word follow usually indicates a colon before the list. Correct: John has all the ingredients: minced clams, milk,

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