May 8, 2007

Proper and Improper Usage of Quotation Marks


1. To enclose the title of an article, book chapter or short written work.
2. To indicate ironic context in the use of a word, phrase or sentence.
3. To set off words spoken by characters within writing.
4. To establish that a word is referring to itself as a word within a given written context.
5. To denote feet (single quote) and inches (double quote) in measurement, or minutes (single quote) and seconds (double quote) in cartography and geography.


1. To enclose a beautiful wild animal.
2. To indicate ironic context in the use of an entire book.
3. To set off words spoken by actual people in your daily life by constantly making air quotes around the mouth of anyone speaking to you as soon as they say anything.
4. To encourage egotistical words that just love referring to themselves every chance they get.
5. To denote feet and inches in measuring the human capacity to love - this trivializes and / or over-sexualizes the concept.
6. To throw like very tiny boomerangs.
7. To start a fire.
8. To bludgeon innocents.
9. To mobilize into a massive punctuational army bent on world domination.

Special Note: If the word "word" appears as quoted by someone quoting someone else who used it in an ironic reference to "word" itself being a word, please stop. Grammar scientists continue to work around the clock to find the proper quotational sequence to set off such an occurrence.

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