Monday, June 28, 2010

Usage of Punctuation marks in English

Look at the following phrases /sentences taken from your lesson:
My dear Mani,
I am fine.
How are you?
“Genghis Khan ................ another day”.
He studied in St. Joseph’s College.
Saravanan was proud of his country; today, the nation is proud
of him.
Each of these phrases / sentences contain a distinct mark (, .
? “ “ ! ‘ ; ).
These are called punctuation marks.
Punctuation means putting in points and stops in writing.

. full stop is placed at the end of a sentence, and in
e.g. He got his B.A. degree.

, comma
It is used -
- to separate words in a list
e.g. coffee, milk, rice, biscuits, etc.
- to separate phrases or clauses
e.g. If you don’t speak, I shall go away
to separate a question from the rest of the sentence
e.g. It’s very nice, isn’t it?
before or after ‘he said’ in a conversation.
e.g. “Nothing will happen to me”, he said.

; semi colon is used to separate parts of a sentence that already
contains commas.
e.g. She was firm in her stand; she would act on it, whenever
she wanted to.

? question mark is used at the end of a direct question.
e.g. Where is the bag?
Is he going?

! exclamation mark occurs at the end of a sentence expressing
surprise, joy, anger, shock, etc.
e.g. That’s great!
Oh, God!

’ apostrophe is used to show that a thing or person belongs
to somebody.
e.g. my sister’s car
students’ corner
It is also used in short forms, to indicate that letters or figures
have been omitted.
e.g. I’m (I am )
They’d (they had, they would )
The winter of’03.

“ ” quotation marks are used to enclose words in direct speech
e.g. “Why were you absent?” he asked.
”I had gone to Chennai”, she said.

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