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  1. #1
    kohyoongliat is offline Senior Member
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    Default The sentence is "He is clever." The word is "clever".

    The sentence is "He is clever."
    The word is "clever".

    I was taught British English and to punctuate as shown above.

    Do Americans punctuate differently with the period inside the quotation for the second sentence?

    Thanks.

  2. #2
    5jj's Avatar
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    Default Re: The sentence is "He is clever." The word is "clever".

    I would put the full stop (period) after the quote in both sentences.

  3. #3
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    Default Re: The sentence is "He is clever." The word is "clever".

    However, that is generally considered incorrect. All printed books place the period inside the quotes, on both sides of the pond. Informally, i.e. people who type their own English on a typewriter or on a computer, the reverse seems more common, as 5jj seems to indicate.

  4. #4
    emsr2d2's Avatar
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    Default Re: The sentence is "He is clever." The word is "clever".

    In BrE, I have always been taught/told to put the full stop outside the quotes unless an entire sentence (which would end with a full stop anyway) is enclosed within the quotation marks.
    Remember - correct capitalisation, punctuation and spacing make posts much easier to read.

  5. #5
    MikeNewYork's Avatar
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    Default Re: The sentence is "He is clever." The word is "clever".

    Quote Originally Posted by kohyoongliat View Post
    The sentence is "He is clever."
    The word is "clever".

    I was taught British English and to punctuate as shown above.

    Do Americans punctuate differently with the period inside the quotation for the second sentence?

    Thanks.
    In AmE, most people (I think) would punctuate the sentences as you have. The second does not contain a quote, it contains an highlighted word.

  6. #6
    Barb_D's Avatar
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    Default Re: The sentence is "He is clever." The word is "clever".

    I must disagree with Mike. American style, no matter how illogical, puts the period inside the quote. Always. Always. It doesn't make sense. But it's the way it is.
    I'm not a teacher, but I write for a living. Please don't ask me about 2nd conditionals, but I'm a safe bet for what reads well in (American) English.

  7. #7
    MikeNewYork's Avatar
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    Default Re: The sentence is "He is clever." The word is "clever".

    Quote Originally Posted by Barb_D View Post
    I must disagree with Mike. American style, no matter how illogical, puts the period inside the quote. Always. Always. It doesn't make sense. But it's the way it is.
    I gave up that "always" years ago. Many others have also. Did you know that the American quotation mark convention was determined by printers? It seems that this was based on the fragility of certain punctuation type pieces. For me I choose logic over preferences that no longer serve a purpose.

  8. #8
    Barb_D's Avatar
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    Default Re: The sentence is "He is clever." The word is "clever".

    Yes, I did know that, but I also write for a living and it's tedious to have the editor have to correct everything to the standards dictated by style guides if I go by logic instead of what the style requires.

    If you're writing to your friend, do what you want. If you're writing for publication in the U.S., save your editor some work and put the punctuation inside the quote mark.
    I'm not a teacher, but I write for a living. Please don't ask me about 2nd conditionals, but I'm a safe bet for what reads well in (American) English.

  9. #9
    probus's Avatar
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    Default Re: The sentence is "He is clever." The word is "clever".

    Quote Originally Posted by Barb_D View Post
    Yes, I did know that, but I also write for a living and it's tedious to have the editor have to correct everything to the standards dictated by style guides if I go by logic instead of what the style requires.

    If you're writing to your friend, do what you want. If you're writing for publication in the U.S., save your editor some work and put the punctuation inside the quote mark.
    Exactly. Typographical convention trumps logic every time.

    And in my opinion, it is no different in BrE.

  10. #10
    MikeNewYork's Avatar
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    Default Re: The sentence is "He is clever." The word is "clever".

    Quote Originally Posted by Barb_D View Post
    Yes, I did know that, but I also write for a living and it's tedious to have the editor have to correct everything to the standards dictated by style guides if I go by logic instead of what the style requires.

    If you're writing to your friend, do what you want. If you're writing for publication in the U.S., save your editor some work and put the punctuation inside the quote mark.
    I will write as I write, and leave the editors to sort it out. That's what they do.

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