Punctuation

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Plural Possessives

To make most nouns plural, add an -s or -es. The -es is added to words that end in an s or z sound. Do not use an apostrophe. Examples: lands dresses taxes quizzes Incorrect: Twenty dog’s were in the pack. Correct: Twenty dogs were in the pack. To make a plural noun possessive, simply

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Definitions in Quotation Marks

Explicit definitions of words or terms are put in quotation marks. Such definitions may or may not be direct quotations from a dictionary or similar source. Definitions that follow such expressions as means, defines, or is defined as are normally put in quotation marks. This highlights or emphasizes the definition. Definitions that follow the verb

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Possessives with More than One Owner

To show that more than one person share the same item together, make only the last owner in the series possessive. Examples: Ken and Larry’s ice cream (They share the same ice cream.) John and Mary’s pet cats (They share the same cats.) To show that there are similar items which are owned individually by

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Single Quotation Marks

Use single quotation marks for a quotation or title using quotation marks inside another quotation or title which uses quotation marks. Incorrect: She asked, “How many of you have read “The Lady of Shalott”?” (“The Lady of Shalott” is a poem. Same kind of quotation mark confuses reader.) Correct: She asked, “How many of you

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Apostrophes with Underlined or Italicized Items

Letters, numbers, symbols, and words used as themselves are italicized or underlined. See Underlining or Italicizing Items that Name Themselves for more on this. When these items are made plural, the plural is shown by adding apostrophe s to the underlined or italicized item. The apostrophe and s are not italicized or underlined. Some authorities

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