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  1. englishhobby's Avatar
    Key Member
    English Teacher
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      • Native Language:
      • Russian
      • Home Country:
      • Russian Federation
      • Current Location:
      • Russian Federation

    • Join Date: Jun 2009
    • Posts: 1,790
    #1

    a question about punctuation (when quoting)

    I got an automatic message from a website and I want to quote it in my own message to a colleague (friend). What would the correct punctuation be - would it be correct to put a comma or a colon after 'It said'? Should I use single or double quotation marks? Should I put a period (full stop) if I'm first quoting the message and then go on with my own sentence? Are there differences in punctuating this sentence in British and American English?

    It said, "Please write in the box below if you have any additional comments.", but there wasn't any box for a comment.
    If I were a native speaker of English, I would never shut up. :-)

  2. Moderator
    Retired English Teacher
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      • Native Language:
      • English
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      • England
      • Current Location:
      • England

    • Join Date: Jun 2010
    • Posts: 28,543
    #2

    Re: a question about punctuation (when quoting)

    No punctuation is needed after 'said'.

    Omit the full stop (period) after 'comments' even though it appeared in the quoted sentence, because your sentence is continuing.

    AE speakers prefer double quotation marks; BE speakers generally use single ones, but either way is fine - nothing is set in stone.

    I'd write

    It said 'Please write in the box below if you have any additional comments', but there wasn't any box for a comment.

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