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Re: ellipsis

Snavely, Deborah wrote:

> Can anyone here confirm whether switching to the UK dictionary flags
> incorrectly used closed punctuation? (Closed "word," punctuation seems to be
> more a US default style, while open "word", punctuation is, I'm told, a UK
> default style.)

Much debate has raged over this, especially amongst editors, over the years.
The Chicago Manual of Style, favored by many, specifies enclosing both
periods (UK: "full-stop") and commas in U.S. usage.  All other punctuation,
according to the CMoS, is to be placed outside of the quotation marks.

There are problems that arise, of course, when quoting precise lines
of code, for example, where using a tailing comma inside the quotes
will not work if it is assumed that everything bordered by the quotation
marks should be included.  It is mostly a stylistic issue where many
believe that putting periods and commas outside of the quotation
marks is ugly.  Many companies have style guides which specify
which style of punctuation to use.  This is usually an arbitrary
decision based solely upon concensus of opinion.

And so the battle rages.  Some say that the only reason the U.S.
adopted the "closed punctuation" method (your terminology) is
because we in the U.S., having won the war, had therefore won
the right to modify the language -- a decision which may have
been borne of a desire to add insult to injury.  Pure speculation...


-- Tom

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