mailing list For webmasters
Welcome Guest
Single Quote Marks Around 'Letters as Letters' and 'Words as Words' Options
footer
Posted: Monday, February 25, 2013 9:06:37 PM
Rank: Advanced Member

Joined: 2/20/2013
Posts: 207
Neurons: 620
I don't like using italics - never did; never will. That said, I'm told that an older British method/style for emphasizing 'letters as letters' and 'words as words' are exampled correctly below. Do you concur with me?

• His ‘a’s looked like ‘8’s.

• Darlene used too many ‘ya know’s, ‘maybe’s, ‘is’s and ‘whereas’s (or ‘whereas’es??) in her essay.

I definitely do not prefer the forms a’s, 8’s, maybe’s, is’s.

Italics would certainly not be useful in these:

too many iss: just italicizing the letter or word to be emphasized and leaving the 's' in roman type (definitely not clear)

Single quote marks around letters and words is clearer, no doubt.

And adding an apostrophe to the letter or word is incorrect punctuation because you've made the emphasized elements possessive when they don't need to be on these particular contexts:

too many maybe's - no good.
(Italicizing the word 'maybe' with a roman type 's'.) - nope, no good (at least not to me)

Please confirm that the older method with single quote marks (as I exampled above) is a viable alternative to italics.

Thank you

Frank Footer
Shivanand
Posted: Monday, February 25, 2013 10:47:54 PM
Rank: Advanced Member

Joined: 9/2/2011
Posts: 7,902
Neurons: 229,316
Location: Bangalore, Karnataka, India
Hi footer, I understand your concern. Yes, italicising/bold facing,putting in single quotes are all practised methods of emphasis. Normally single quote mark can be used as you have pointed out. Italicising is normally done for a new word/phrase to accentuate the same. However, as long as you communicate what you intend to, it's okay. I too am against using apostrophes as illustrated by you!


Cheers!
leonAzul
Posted: Monday, February 25, 2013 11:13:56 PM

Rank: Advanced Member

Joined: 8/11/2011
Posts: 8,589
Neurons: 31,086
Location: Miami, Florida, United States
In general, I agree with you that the use of italic font is not good for these applications.

As with everything else that has to do with style, however, there will always be exceptions.

In my opinion, the better way to think about it is to consider the medium. The expressive needs of a poster, broadsheet, newspaper, bound book, type-written report, blog, web page, email message, and SMS text will all be different, and allowances have to be made.

footer
Posted: Tuesday, February 26, 2013 12:45:28 AM
Rank: Advanced Member

Joined: 2/20/2013
Posts: 207
Neurons: 620
So which would you go with?
1. too many ‘whereas’s
2. too many ‘whereas’es

I say #1.
Drag0nspeaker
Posted: Tuesday, February 26, 2013 1:26:10 AM

Rank: Advanced Member

Joined: 9/12/2011
Posts: 34,427
Neurons: 228,163
Location: Livingston, Scotland, United Kingdom
Hiya!

Well the first post in this topic definitely gave a good example of the use of "Large-font".

I agree that the 'single quote' (which I usually call 'inverted commas') can be used for words as words.

The only normal singular nouns I could find ending with "-as" were 'gas' and 'pancreas'.
The dictionaries show the plural of 'gas' to be 'gases' or 'gasses'. ('Pancreas' doesn't show a plural).

I agree with #1 - I think with the inverted commas already there, you don't need the extra "e".
towan52
Posted: Tuesday, February 26, 2013 10:37:21 AM

Rank: Advanced Member

Joined: 8/28/2012
Posts: 1,987
Neurons: 226,869
Location: Waco, Texas, United States
I don't like using italics - never did; never will. That said, I'm told that an older British method/style for emphasizing 'letters as letters' and 'words as words' are exampled correctly below. Do you concur with me?

• His ‘a’s looked like ‘8’s.

• Darlene used too many ‘ya know’s, ‘maybe’s, ‘is’s and ‘whereas’s (or ‘whereas’es??) in her essay.

I definitely do not prefer the forms a’s, 8’s, maybe’s, is’s.

Italics would certainly not be useful in these:

too many iss: just italicizing the letter or word to be emphasized and leaving the 's' in roman type (definitely not clear)

Single quote marks around letters and words is clearer, no doubt.

And adding an apostrophe to the letter or word is incorrect punctuation because you've made the emphasized elements possessive when they don't need to be on these particular contexts:

too many maybe's - no good.
(Italicizing the word 'maybe' with a roman type 's'.) - nope, no good (at least not to me)

Please confirm that the older method with single quote marks (as I exampled above) is a viable alternative to italics.

Hi Footer:
This maybe just a custom thing (I was failure under the British education systemWhistle ) but italics, for me were usually, just used for for foreign words e.g. He shrugged his shoulders and muttered, "c'est la vie you old bar steward.". I've also often seen italics used when referring to a publication, particularly in citations. Having said that, before the advent of word-processors and PCs, emphasising a particular word in isolation was not easy. It was normally a choice of inverted commas or additional text to illustrate the importance of a term. I believe old typewriters could underline a wordThink .

In respect of quote marks etc, I have always found that single quote marks should be used within text that already has the double quote marks e.g. I said, "that profane idiot uses the expletive 'f**k' every second word.".

Finally, the questions about apostrophes. There were no words there that needed an apostrophe and (IMHO) those plurals could have included the "s" within the quote marks. As Leon and I often agree - if in doubt about an apostrophe, re-word to avoid the issue!I think my points are more "common usage" than from a grammar text, but I hope this helps.
Angus
Posted: Tuesday, February 26, 2013 12:46:42 PM
Rank: Advanced Member

Joined: 4/13/2009
Posts: 294
Neurons: 5,146
Note to Dragonspeaker: The plural of pancreas is pancreata. Other examples are psoas, plural psoai and vas, plural vasa. However I couldn't find a plural for Christmas, Michaelmas, etc.
RuthP
Posted: Tuesday, February 26, 2013 12:57:00 PM

Rank: Advanced Member

Joined: 6/2/2009
Posts: 5,408
Neurons: 87,618
Location: Drain, Oregon, United States
Angus wrote:
Note to Dragonspeaker: The plural of pancreas is pancreata. Other examples are psoas, plural psoai and vas, plural vasa. However I couldn't find a plural for Christmas, Michaelmas, etc.

Off Topic: Angus! Nice to see you again. Where have you been?
Drag0nspeaker
Posted: Wednesday, February 27, 2013 9:45:05 AM

Rank: Advanced Member

Joined: 9/12/2011
Posts: 34,427
Neurons: 228,163
Location: Livingston, Scotland, United Kingdom

Hi Angus! Thank you.

But besides all these funny plurals, what else have the Romans given us? Whistle Whistle
leonAzul
Posted: Wednesday, February 27, 2013 10:13:38 AM

Rank: Advanced Member

Joined: 8/11/2011
Posts: 8,589
Neurons: 31,086
Location: Miami, Florida, United States
footer wrote:
So which would you go with?
1. too many ‘whereas’s
2. too many ‘whereas’es

I say #1.

And I say, tell me where you want to print it, and then I can tell you which one to go with.
Think
Users browsing this topic
Guest


Forum Jump
You cannot post new topics in this forum.
You cannot reply to topics in this forum.
You cannot delete your posts in this forum.
You cannot edit your posts in this forum.
You cannot create polls in this forum.
You cannot vote in polls in this forum.