When To Use A Semicolon, Dash, Hyphen, Colon, Comma In A Sentence

When it comes to building a sentence, punctuation marks are one of the most crucial aspects of sentence building. There are many types of punctuation marks that are available in a sentence. Most of the time, people don’t even realize how wrong they are when it comes to punctuation marks. We all know that this symbol right here ‘?’ signifies the ending of a question.

Likewise, there is this ‘!’ which symbolizes an exclamatory sentence and the same is called an exclamation mark. There are many aspects of punctuation marks in a sentence and care must be taken if you are going to write an academic article or content from a blog.

Mostly, extra care must be taken if you are writing the same on a notepad made up of paper with a pen. This is because nowadays, there are several apps that correct your writing style online. Read more to find out!

When To Use A Comma?

A Comma (,) is the second most useful punctuation mark after full stops. I hope you know what full stops are. There are 4 places where you should use a comma and these are as follows: –

  • To list things and items and to separate short phrases and words.
  • Before conjunctions to separate two different clauses.
  • After a sentence that is short and a type of introduction.
  • To separate an interrupter phrase.

When To Use A Colon?

A colon (:) is two parallel dots given before a list. It is the initiation of a sentence that would explain what the writer is trying to convey in a sentence. Colons are used in 3 places which are: –

  • To introduce a list
  • To separate the second clause which explains the first.
  • For salutations.

When To Use A Semicolon?

A Semicolon (;) is as same as a colon, but the dot present below the first dot is replaced with a comma. It denotes the separation of two ideas. There are 4 rules of using a semicolon and these are as follows:

  • To join two different ideas which are almost equal in meaning.
  • Before a conjunctive verb.
  • To introduce a list where the words are long or uneven.
  • Before a coordinating junction.

When To Use A Dash?

A simple dash (-) is one of the most versatile punctuation marks ever to be introduced in English grammar. Sometimes it is underutilized or overutilized in a sentence. It can function as the above-mentioned punctuation marks too but it depends on where you are using the same. There are about three different ways where you can use a dash and these are as follows: –

  • Dashes can replace parentheses.
  • Dashes can be used in place of a colon.
  • Dashes should always be used by keeping the audience in mind.

When To Use A Hyphen?

A hyphen is always confused with a dash because they look similar but you need to understand that they are both used differently. A hyphen (-) is used to separate two words that can form a compound word. There are 3 ways where you can use a hyphen and these are as follows: –

  • To separate two words serving as adjectives.
  • For compound numbers.
  • To avoid any type of confusion.

Final Words

So, this was all there was to punctuation marks. Always make sure you are using the correct punctuation marks while writing as it makes your wording clear and grammatically correct. Keep visiting inasentence for more.

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