How to use Punctuation Marks?

Punc­tu­a­tion means demar­cat­ing points. It means putting proper demar­cat­ing points in the right place to mark the length and mean­ing of sen­tences. Punc­tu­a­tion plays an impor­tant role in writ­ten Eng­lish world. In spo­ken world, pro­nun­ci­a­tion helps in effec­tive communication-making the mean­ing clear through tones. The same role is played by punc­tu­a­tion in writ­ten world. Hence punc­tu­a­tion essen­tially helps in dri­ving home your point of view. Punc­tu­a­tion helps in read­abil­ity by aid­ing in pro­nun­ci­a­tion and mak­ing sen­tences unclut­tered by using proper interjections.

Why is punc­tu­a­tion needed?

To under­stand the need of punc­tu­a­tion let us look at a pas­sage with­out punc­tu­a­tion and let us com­pare it with a pas­sage with punctuation.

“i would like to apply for a job with your com­pany for two years i have been employed as a sales clerk for the jones store i sold noth­ing that i did not take pride in i am sure it will be the same if i work for you”
Let us now look at the above pas­sage in light of punctuation.

“I would like to apply for a job with your com­pany. For two years I have been employed as a sales clerk for the Jones store. I sold noth­ing that I did not take pride in. I am sure it will be the same if I work for you.”

Now let us look at the same pas­sage from the point of view of improper punc­tu­a­tion placing.

Usage of Punctuation Marks

Usage of Punc­tu­a­tion Marks

“I would like to apply for a job with your com­pany for two years. I have been employed. As a sales clerk for the Jones store I sold noth­ing. That, I did not take pride in. I am sure it will be the same if I work for you.”

You can see how improper plac­ing of com­mas and full stops alters the mean­ing of sen­tences. So, one should be very care­ful while deal­ing punctuation.

Punc­tu­a­tion Marks

In this arti­cle we would pri­mar­ily look into the two punc­tu­a­tion marks often used in Eng­lish lan­guage namely the period, the ques­tion mark and the cap­i­tal let­ters. We shall see the oth­ers in the next arti­cle includ­ing com­mas and semi colons.

Period

A period is used to com­plete a sen­tence. A sen­tence is a group of words con­tain­ing a sub­ject and pred­i­cate. A sen­tence is a col­lec­tion of words mak­ing com­plete sense. So once you find a group of words mak­ing com­plete sense, you must check whether a period is needed or not. In British Eng­lish a period is called a ‘full stop’.
Exam­ples
He went to Lon­don last week.
He vis­ited his ances­tral home last month.

Ques­tion Marks

A ques­tion mark ends a sen­tence with a ques­tion. Basi­cally when the asker has the inten­tion of ask­ing a ques­tion, the sen­tence ends with a ques­tion mark.

Exam­ples:
Why is it so hot?
He went to Lon­don. Didn’t he?

Cap­i­tal Letters

The cap­i­tal let­ters are used in many places. Refer to the below men­tioned rules to under­stand the usage of cap­i­tal let­ters.
• At the start of a new sen­tence. Exam­ple: The cat sat on the mat. His owner sat nearby.
• For the let­ter “I” when you are refer­ring to your­self. Exam­ple: He can run faster than I can.
• For people’s names. Exam­ples: Mark Spencer.
• For titles. Exam­ples: Dr Jones, Mr Brown
• For book/film/company titles (main words only). Exam­ples: The God­fa­ther
• In direct speech, for the first spo­ken word. Exam­ple: She said, “My name is Mary.“
• For acronyms. Exam­ples: UNICEF
• For titles of days, months. Exam­ples: Mon­day, July
To under­stand and be flu­ent in punc­tu­a­tion please prac­tice the above men­tioned rules. In the next arti­cle we would see the most impor­tant punc­tu­a­tion marks namely comma and semi colon.

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3 Responses to “How to use Punctuation Marks?”

  1. […] hope you put to prac­tice the rules stated in the pre­vi­ous post where I talked about punc­tu­a­tion marks. Extend­ing for­ward in this post we would look into the most oft used punc­tu­a­tion marks– […]

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