One of the most important parts of writing is proper punctuation. Unlike some languages, English uses alot of punctuation marks.. Here I will try my best to explain and show you how to use them correctly.
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Why do we need punctuation marks in English language?
Punctuation is not a kind of code, but is there to make what you write clear, easy to understand and read. We should only use it as far as we need it in our writing as part of the process of communication with the people. It is useful and it is important and it should be accurate otherwise the meaning that we thought to convey may change. Punctuation is important for clear and easy understanding. Providing all information required but improper punctuation makes it very hard to read and understand. Punctuation includes correct usage of commas, semicolons, full stops etc. By writing punctually correct, we can have the following benefits:
Punctuation is the system of symbols (. , ! - : etc) that we use to separate sentences and parts of sentences, and to make their meaning clear. Each symbol is called a "punctuation mark".
An English teacher wrote these words on the board:
woman without her man is nothing
The teacher then asked the students to punctuate the words correctly. The men wrote the top line. The women wrote the bottom line.
Although there are general rules for English punctuation, there are differences of style between, for example, British and American English, some publishers and some writers. Anyone seeking guidance at an advanced level is recommended to consult a style guide (often included in good dictionaries) for their particular variety of English or editorial style.
So let’s start. We will take each mark one at a time and try to explain it so you will understand its usage more clearly.
Different punctuation marks are used to end different kinds of sentences. How do you know which ones to use? Check out these simple tips on how to end your sentences. Here are three basic punctuation marks that are used at the end of a sentence.
The period is used at the end of a declarative sentence, which is a sentence that states an idea. Below are examples:
A period is also used to end an imperative sentence that does not convey excitement or urgency. See the following examples:
The question mark, as its name suggests, is used to end a question. This is shown in the following examples:
The exclamation point is used at the end of an exclamatory sentence or a sentence that expresses strong feelings, such as excitement and urgency. Check out these examples:
There you have it: the three basic punctuation marks that are used to end different kinds of sentences. Now, you have an idea of how to use a period, a question mark, and an exclamation point to end a sentence. If you are unsure of which punctuation to use, you can always consult WhiteSmoke's online punctuation checker. A punctuation checker is a practical tool that anyone who wishes to learn English should have.
Out of the many important elements of writing, punctuation may be the most essential. Punctuation helps direct us through written language with its system of symbols and the rules for using them. Correct usage of punctuation symbols like commas and periods, as well as spaces, capital letters and many other conventions, help the reader avoid confusion and understand more clearly what the writer has intended. Punctuation also affects the rhythm of how a sentence is read, as well as the actual meaning of the writing.
To really understand how important proper punctuation is, look at the following simple sentence:
I did it.
With the period at the end, it is a basic statement of fact.
If we change the period to an exclamation point - I did it ! - there is a distinct sense of pride from accomplishing something.
And with a question mark at the end - I did it ? - the writer expresses wonderment and disbelief in having done something.
These minute changes in punctuation alter the entire tone and meaning of the basic sentence. And these three punctuation marks - the period, exclamation point, and question mark - exemplify only a tiny part of the vast amount of power that lies in correct punctuation.
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