Common Punctuation Marks in Writing Letters (Functions and Examples) - Punctuation mark is a sign or mark used in writing to divide sentences and phrases such as full stops and commas. In... - Punctuation mark is a sign or mark used in writing to divide sentences and phrases such as full stops and commas. In this post, I will explain frequently used punctuation marks in writing letters, their functions and examples of their use in sentences, phrases and words. Take a look at the punctuation marks in table below:

Common Punctuation Marks in Writing Letters (Functions & Examples)

There are 8 most commonly used punctuation marks in English: Comma, Semicolon, Colon, Hyphen, Ellipsis, Parentheses, Dash, and Apostrophe.

No Punctuation Mark Function(s) Example(s)
1. Comma (,) Separates dependent clauses; a dependent clause doesn’t present a complete thought. Separates elements in a series. Can be used after salutation in a personal letter. • Mr. Smith, a lawyer, was at the party.
• As I mentioned in my letter, we need to hire three secretaries.
• We need action, not words.
2. Semicolon (;) While commas separate dependent clauses, semicolons separate independent clauses that closely relate to each other. Hundreds of tests are conducted to determine product safety; accidents still occur regularly.
3. Colon (:) • Announces that something follows. Usually precedes a series or an explanation.
• Also used after the salutation of a business letter.
• Go to the stockroom and bring me these items: pens, ribbons, and folders.
• Hospitals exist for one reason: to heal the sick.
4. Hyphen (-) • Links words. Usually links two or more words modifying a noun.
• Can divide the syllables of a word at the end of a line of text.
• This is a state-of-the-art course.
• We need to go through a two-stage process.
5. Ellipsis (. . .) Shows hesitation or omission of letters or words. Often used when only part of a quotation is used. • "," he stammered.
• "This is the best report I've seen..."
6. Parentheses () Adds information. Often the information is of secondary importance. • Acme Co. had great revenues (see fig. 5).
• I'm sending you the two checks (No. 1246 and No. 1249) you requested.
7. Dash (—) Highlights or interrupts a thought. A dash SHOUTS; parentheses whisper. • The Dow Jones Average closed at 6,960 — a new low for the year — confirming that we are still in a bear market.
• The seminar — which includes a text, handout materials, and a workbook — costs $3,000.
8. Apostrophe (') Shows possession or contraction. Also read: 52 Mostly Used Contractions in English. • The boy's pen is on his desk.
• We'll see you soon.
• The employees' rights are protected by OSHA.
• Mr. Dickens's book is open.



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Writing Skills: Common Punctuation Marks in Writing Letters (Functions and Examples)
Common Punctuation Marks in Writing Letters (Functions and Examples)
Writing Skills
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