What is punctuation? Types with proper examples

In this article, we will learn types of punctuation but first we need to understand What punctuation is and why it is required?

Before starting with the definition of punctuation, let’s see an example to get a basic knowledge about punctuation.

A mother has four sons north, south and west. What is name of the fourth son.

Please comment the name of the fourth son in the comment section. If you think it’s a googly question and you answered the fourth son’s name is east then you are wrong. The correct answer is “What ” because if you notice closely there is a full stop(.) after son. This means it is the end of the statement. So this statement was stating What is the name.
Now, you might have realized the power of punctuation.

Types of punctuation

Let’s understand, What is punctuation?

Punctuation is a set of marks in English used to indicate pauses and stops in the text. 

Why is punctuation required?

While speaking we add the pauses and stops directly to convey our meaning but in writing a writer has to define where the reader needs to pause or stop. So that the people(reader) understands what the writer is saying. Punctuation essentially clarifies the meaning of text by linking or separating words, phrases or clauses.

Types of punctuation:-

There are six  principal punctuation marks or stops in English.

  1. Full stop / period(.)
  2. Comma(,)
  3. Semicolon(;)
  4. Colon(:)
  5. Question mark(?)
  6. Exclamation mark(!)

Let’s learn the all punctuation marks separately:-

 Full stop / period(.) :-

The period is the greatest pause in the text. It marks the end of a declarative or imperative sentence.The first letter of the sentence having full stop(.) Must start with a capital letter.

Let’s look into examples to make it clear:-

  • This boy ranked top in the class.
  • Ram is good at running.
  • I bought two ice creams.
  • He is good at mathematics.

Let’s look into an imperative sentence:-

  • Please stop him.

Notice above all of the sentences end with a full stop and the first letter is capital.

Now, let’s look into the next punctuation mark,

Comma(,) :-

It has many usages, so we will look at the two most common uses of it.

  • Separate a series of words.

For example :-

America,Japan,India and Italy formed an alliance.

Notice how the series has been separated by a comma.

Let’s look into one more, use of comma :-

  • Separate each pair of words,

we has milk and biscuits, cheese and sandwich, apple and banana, you can eat anything

Here, you can see, there are pairs like milk and biscuits, cheese and sandwich , apple and banana. So we have used commas here.

Now, let’s look into the third punctuation mark,

Semicolon(;) :-

it represents the pause greater than a comma. It is used to separate Clauses of compound sentences.

For example:- He was Brave large- Hearted man; and we all honored him.
Notice how we use semicolons here to separate Clauses of compound sentences.

Now, let’s look into the forth punctuation mark,

Colon(:) :-

It represents pause which is even greater than a semicolon. It is used to introduce a quotation.

For example:- The boy says: “The Earth is round.”
Notice the usage before the quotation mark of colon(:).

Let’s look into the fifth punctuation mark,

Question mark(?) :-

It is used at the end of an interrogative sentence.

For example:-

  • What’s wrong with you?
  • What is your name?
  • How are you?

Notice the end with a question mark symbol. So this is how we use question marks as punctuation.

Now, let’s look into the 6th and the final principle,

Exclamation mark(!):-

Exclamation mark is used  after phrases and sentences expressing sudden emotion or wish and after interjections.

For example:-

  • What a terrible fire this is!
  • Hurray, I won the lottery!
  • Alas he won the match!

So notice how we used exclamation marks after a sudden emotion and an interjection.

Let me give you an exercise to practice.

You have to add the punctuation mark wherever required and message me the answer in the comment section.

  1. Ani is a good boy
  2. Binay likes to play Cricket Badminton and chess
  3. What a beautiful girl she is
  4. How old are you
  5. The girl says Sujoy bought a computer
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