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off-topic: open/closed punctuation

The best explanation I ever heard of particular controversy was from an
former Framer and old hot-lead journalist, who said that, in newspaper
typefaces, when a quote ends a phrase or sentence, it was typeset with the
quote ABOVE the period (or comma) -- the latter being a narrower character
than the former, there was plenty of room to kern the two into a single
character's width. (He said he's seen the combined "character" in lead; I'll
have to ask the folks down at the SJ Living History's Victorian print shop
if they can confirm.) Presumably, when folks started trying to define
whether such a combined character represented a period followed by a quote
or the other way around for Telex and later computer purposes, some did it
one way and some another. Anyone got any pre-electronic style guides to
confirm this bit of colloquial and possibly fictional history?


> ----------
> From: 	Carolyn Stallard[SMTP:Carolyn.Stallard@Coastek.com]
> Sent: 	Wednesday, December 09, 1998 8:53 AM
> To: 	Suzette Seveny
> Cc: 	'Thomas Regner'; Snavely, Deborah; 'framers@omsys.com'
> Subject: 	Re: ellipsis
> Hear, hear!  Not all US writers bend to the obsolete illogic of placing
> non-quoted punctuation marks inside quotes.  I flat-out refuse to do so.
> Suzette Seveny wrote:
> > . . . Our schools (and I know because I recently checked) teach
> > grammar and punctuation rules similar to the UK.  All punctuation is
> placed
> > outside of quotation marks, unless the punctuation is part of the quoted
> > materials.  I write for both Canadian and American audiences (different
> > material), so I try to stay aware of each country's style and
> idiosyncrasies.
> -- 
> Carolyn Stallard
> Documentation Manager
> Coastek, Inc.

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