By R. L. Trask Penguin Reference Books
The Penguin consultant to Punctuation is necessary for an individual who must familiarize yourself with utilizing punctuation of their written paintings. no matter if you're wondered via colons and semicolons, uncertain of the place commas should still move or baffled by means of apostrophes, this jargon-free, succinct consultant is for you.
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Extra resources for The Penguin Guide to Punctuation
Without the apostrophes, these would be unreadable. So, when you have to pluralize an orthographically unusual form, use an apostrophe if it seems to be essential for clarity, but don't use one if the written form is perfectly clear without it. (Note that I have italicized these odd forms; this is a very good practice if you can produce italics. ) 56 The Apostrophe The Penguin Guide to Punctuation 57 possessive form is not pronounced with an extra s. 3 Possessives An apostrophe is used in a possessive form, like Esther's family or Janet's cigarettes, and this is the use of the apostrophe which causes most of the trouble.
What about electro-magnetic versus electromagnetic? Collins and Longman confirm that only the second is in use among those who use the term regularly, but Oxford clings stubbornly to the antiquated and pointless hyphen. On the other hand, things like * pressurecooker, * wordprocessor and * emeraldgreen are impossibly hard on the eye; reference to a good dictionary will confirm that the established forms of the first two are pressure cooker and word processor, while the last is emerald green or emerald-green, depending on how it is used (see below).
Here the writer is making fun of the common tendency to see historical events in simple-minded terms as either good or bad. Another example: Many people claim that rock music is Serious Art, deserving of Serious Critical Attention. The writer is clearly being sarcastic: all those unusual capital letters demonstrate that he considers rock music to be worthless trash. This stylistic device is only appropriate in writing which is intended to be humorous, or at least light-hearted; it is quite out of place in formal writing.
The Penguin Guide to Punctuation by R. L. Trask Penguin Reference Books