- the practice or system of using certain conventional marks or characters in writing or printing in order to separate elements and make the meaning clear, as in ending a sentence or separating clauses.
- the act of punctuating.
- punctuation marks.
Origin of punctuation
Examples from the Web for punctuation
Completed in 1953 and composed with standard line breaks and punctuation, the book was completely ignored upon submission.The Lost Novel of Nobel-Winner José Saramago
January 5, 2015
“And to see great fashion,” he added half-heartedly, in monotone and with no punctuation.Justin Bieber's Abs Cannot Save Him
September 10, 2014
You might say that this is part of my side of the story… Please excuse my handwriting, punctuation, and spelling.Life as an Undocumented Immigrant
Jose Antonio Vargas
April 28, 2014
It was more like punctuation, a real life comma that emphasizes the constant pressures of our daily schedule.Why Men Shouldn’t Wait To Have Kids
Conor P. Williams
March 8, 2014
The rise to infamy of the “SarcMark”® is unparalleled in the history of punctuation.The Rise and Fall of the Infamous SarcMark
September 24, 2013
Changes in spelling, use of capitals, punctuation and type are not recorded.Maid Marian
Thomas Love Peacock
It was a species of punctuation, and implied that Mr. Morgan had finished his remark.The Slave Of The Lamp
Henry Seton Merriman
Otherwise, spelling and punctuation are presented as in the original text.Washington's Masonic Correspondence
Julius F. Sachse
Other than noted corrections, spelling and punctuation is presented as in the original.The Phantom World
That it was the best piece of punctuation I have seen for some time.
- the use of symbols not belonging to the alphabet of a writing system to indicate aspects of the intonation and meaning not otherwise conveyed in the written language
- the symbols used for this purpose
- the act or an instance of punctuating
Word Origin and History for punctuation
1530s, "pointing of the psalms," from Medieval Latin punctuationem (nominative punctuatio) "a marking with points," noun of action from past participle stem of punctuare "to mark with points or dots," from Latin punctus "a prick" (see point (n.)). Meaning "system of inserting pauses in written matter" is recorded from 1660s.
[P]unctuation is cold notation; it is not frustrated speech; it is typographic code. [Robert Bringhurst, "The Elements of Typographic Style," 2004]