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    #1

    punctuation and meaning

    Dear teachers,


    Is there a difference in meaning between these couple of sentences, please?

    1a) Jane writes poetry every morning.
    1b) Jane writes “poetry” every morning.

    2a) Peter said Ron was elected President.
    2b) Peter said, “Ron was elected President”.

    Have you got better examples to illustrate this point, please?

    Thank you in advance,
    Hela

  1. BobK's Avatar
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    #2

    Re: punctuation and meaning

    1a and b are substantially different. The quotation marks mean that the writer wouldn't call it poetry.

    2a and b are almost [and often exactly] the same. The quotation marks mean that those exact words were spoken. But if Peter actually said 'In a close-run election for the presidency, Ron was finally elected after a re-count" 2a would still be true (but not 2b).

    b

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    #3

    Re: punctuation and meaning

    Hello Bob,

    So would you have some better examples that can illustrate the point that a punctuation signal may change the meaning of a sentence, please?

    Kindest regards,
    Hela

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    #4

    Re: punctuation and meaning

    There are lots - just do a search for "punctuation" (in this forum).

    But if you want just ones that use quotation marks:

    Father, as usual, was 'working' in the shed at the bottom of the garden. Nobody knew quite what he did there - and certainly no tangible results of his 'work' had ever come out of the garden shed. But every evening after dinner he took his pipe and with a gruff 'If anyone wants me I'll be working' he disappeared out of the back door.

    or

    I said 'I will never forget you'. And I meant just that. I didn't mean I would remember you with affection. I never promised to be loyal to anyone'.

    b

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