Competitive Exams

Punctuation and Capital Letters

Punctuation

There are 14 punctuation marks that are commonly used in English grammar. They are the period, question mark, exclamation point, comma, semicolon, colon, dash, hyphen, parentheses, brackets, braces, apostrophe, quotation marks, and ellipsis.

We will today learn about commonly used punctuations :  period, question mark, exclamation point, comma, semicolon, colon, apostrophe and quotation marks

Sentence Endings

Three of the fourteen punctuation marks are appropriate for use as sentence endings. They are the period, question mark, and exclamation point.

  1. Period or full stop (.) is placed at the end of declarative sentences, statements thought to be complete and after many abbreviations.
  • As a sentence ender: Naman and Vihan went to the market.
  • After an abbreviation: Her son, Chauhan Jr., was born on Jun. 8, 2008.

2. Question mark (?) is used to indicate a direct question when placed at the end of a sentence.

  • When did Naman go to school?

3. Exclamation point (!) is used when a person wants to express a sudden outcry or add emphasis.

  • Within dialogue: “Holy cow!” screamed Jane.
  • To emphasize a point: My mother-in-law’s rants make me furious!

Comma, Semicolon, and Colon

The comma, semicolon, and colon are often misused because they all can indicate a pause in a series.

4.  Comma is used to show a separation of ideas or elements within the structure of a sentence. Additionally, it is used in numbers, dates, and letter writing after the salutation and closing.

  • Direct address: Thanks for all your help, Siri.
  • Separation of two complete sentences: We went to the movies, and then we went out to lunch.
  • Separating lists or elements within sentences: Naman wanted the black, green, and blue pants.

5.  Semicolon (;) is used to connect independent clauses. It shows a closer relationship between the clauses than a period would show.

  • John was hurt; he knew she only said it to upset him.

6. Colon (:) has three main uses. The first is after a word introducing a quotation, an explanation, an example, or a series.

  • He was planning to study four subjects: politics, philosophy, sociology, and economics.

Apostrophe and Quotation Marks

7.  Apostrophe (‘) is used to indicate the omission of a letter or letters from a word, the possessive case, or the plurals of lowercase letters. Examples of the apostrophe in use include:

  • Omission of letters from a word: I’ve seen that movie several times. She wasn’t the only one who knew the answer.
  • Possessive case: Sara’s dog bit the neighbor.
  • Plural for lowercase letters: Six people were told to mind their p’s and q’s.

8. Quotations marks (” “) are a pair of punctuation marks used primarily to mark the beginning and end of a passage attributed to another and repeated word for word. They are also used to indicate meanings and to indicate the unusual or dubious status of a word.

  • “Don’t go outside,” she said.

Single quotation marks (‘ ‘) are used most frequently for quotes within quotes.

  • Marie told the teacher, “I saw Marc at the playground, and he said to me ‘Bill started the fight,’ and I believed him.”page26image3539257184page26image3539392208page26image3539257952page26image3539258288page26image3539402432

Capital Letters:

A capital letters is used:

  • To begin a sentence.
  • To begin a proper noun

We always begin a sentence with a capital letter.

̄All proper nouns begin with capital letters too.
̄The letter ‘I’ when written by itself is always a capital letter.

You and are very good friends.

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