quotation mark

noun
  1. one of the marks used to indicate the beginning and end of a quotation, in English usually shown as “ at the beginning and ” at the end, or, for a quotation within a quotation, of single marks of this kind, as “He said, ‘I will go.’ ” Frequently, especially in Great Britain, single marks are used instead of double, the latter being then used for a quotation within a quotation.
Sometimes quote mark.

Origin of quotation mark

First recorded in 1880–85
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018

British Dictionary definitions for quotation marks

quotation mark

noun
  1. either of the punctuation marks used to begin or end a quotation, respectively and or and in English printing and writing. When double marks are used, single marks indicate a quotation within a quotation, and vice versaAlso called: inverted comma
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition © William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012

quotation marks in Culture

quotation marks

Punctuation marks (“ ”) that set off dialogue, quoted material, titles of short works, and definitions. When something must be quoted inside a quotation, single quotation marks are used: “‘Religion,’ according to Karl Marx (see also Marx), ‘is the opiate of the masses.’”

The New Dictionary of Cultural Literacy, Third Edition Copyright © 2005 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.