Fix All 14 Punctuation Marks with Free Online Grammar and Punctuation Editor

Why Must Grammatical and Punctuation Errors Be Avoided?

Without the many grammar and punctuation rules that govern how we write it would be pretty much impossible to understand what has been written. These rules ensure that any reader will be able to understand what you have written without any confusion. Get it wrong, however, and your audience may not be able to comprehend your writing. Hence the need for using a comma help engine or a punctuation editor free online.

We will all at times make mistakes within our writing and should spend time when we complete our work to check it with care. However, our checks are rarely going to be effective if we rush them or fail to concentrate on them effectively. Often the best option is to use the punctuation editor software to check your writing. The software does not tire and will know all of the many rules inside out.

Our highly effective free online grammar and punctuation editor provides you with the perfect way to quickly check all of your writing. It will be able to highlight any mistakes that you may have made within your writing and will show you precisely how the problem should be fixed. After all, leave those mistakes in your writing and you are unlikely to get the results that you are looking for from your work.

What Are the 14 Punctuation Marks in English and How Are They Used?

Believe it or not, there are actually 14 commonly used punctuation marks that are used within the English language. Get any of them wrong and your reader may either misinterpret what you have written or will think that your work is sloppy and unreliable. The following are the punctuation marks that you will use along with the rules for using them:

Period Rules

The period or full stop in British English is used at the end of your sentences unless you are using one of the other endpoints such as an exclamation mark or a question mark. No other points should be at the end of any completed sentence. It is also used to indicate an abbreviation such as for Dec. or Mon.

Exclamation Point Rules

The exclamation point or exclamation mark in British English is used for two main reasons. The first is to show a sudden outcry: “Oh Hell!” cried Mary. Secondly, it can be used to add emphasis to what you are trying to say: The rules about social media where I work make me so angry!

Question Mark Rules

The question mark is always used to indicate that the sentence is a direct question when you place it at the end. Such as: Does question mark go inside quotation marks?

Comma Rules

There are quite a few correct comma placement rules, which is why so many will want to use a comma placement checker app to check their writing. The comma is primarily used to show separation or ideas, or a pause within your sentence. It can also be used to separate items in a list for your essay, paper, thesis, dissertation or article.

You will also use a comma after dates and numbers and will use it after the closing and salutation within any letter writing.

Semicolon and Colon Usage

These punctuation marks also indicate a pause in almost the same way as a comma. They are therefore easy to confuse hence the need for using a comma and semicolon checker so that you spot and correct any of your mistakes.

The semicolon will be used in a sentence to connect two related independent clauses. Instead of a comma or period between the two clauses the semicolon indicates a much closer relationship. For instance: Mary was upset; even though she knew he only said it to upset her.

The colon, on the other hand, has a few more uses:

  • It can be used to provide emphasis on the sentence: John had only one aim in life: to fly.
  • It can be used to separate independent clauses. However, unlike the semicolon, it is used when the second clause will explain the first: There was no need to continue writing: the work was already late.
  • It can be used as an introduction to a quotation, a list, an example, or an explanation: The student will check his work for: punctuation, grammar, spelling, and vocabulary.
  • Finally, there are many uses that are non-grammatical such as for a ratio 4:1 or when telling the time 3:15.

Dash and the Hyphen Difference

The dash and the hyphen look very similar and are often confused. So it is vital to know the difference between hyphen vs dash. The hyphen is used to connect two or more words together to make a compound term such as back-to-back or down-and-out. There is no space between the hyphen and the words when you use it.

A dash, however, is used in a few different ways. It can be used to indicate a range such as: 1960 – 2000. It can also be used in place of a comma to add emphasis: She shouted at him – run!

Brackets, Braces, and Parentheses: How to Choose?

These symbols are used to contain a group of words that usually offer a further explanation or will clarify the meaning. The following are how they are used:

  • Parentheses: ( ) These are usually used when you wish to make qualifying remarks or add further thoughts. Often you will be able to use commas in place of them without altering the meaning of the sentence in any way: Jack and Jill went up the hill (not like in the nursery rhyme) to reach the home of their aunt.
  • Brackets: [ ] these square brackets are used in technical explanations or also to clarify meaning: She [Mary] let go of the ledge.
  • Braces: { } These are most commonly seen within mathematical expressions and computer programming. They can also be used to contain multiple lines of text that should be seen as related. These are rarely seen in most writing.

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Apostrophe Usage

There are actually three main ways in which you will use the apostrophe:

  • To show that letters have been omitted from a work such as in: I’ve, Don’t, Didn’t, etc.
  • To show possession: Mary’s cat ran away.
  • For plurals of lowercase letters (not any other plurals!): Mind your p’s and q’s.

Quotation Marks Usage

Officially the quotation mark is used to enclose something said by another. They should fully enclose what has been said word for word. The teacher said: “Use the full stop and comma checker to keep your punctuation straight.”

In most cases, you will use the double quotation marks. Single quotation marks are used when you make a quotation within a quotation: “ I saw Henry, he said ‘don’t use the swings as they are broken’ so I went over to the slide.”

Another area in which quotation marks are now being used is to indicate something that may be unusual or dubious.

Ellipsis Rules

The ellipsis is a line of three periods: … An ellipsis in a sentence is used to show that there is an omission of information that is not necessarily required within the writing. Such as: He counted “one, two, three…” right through to 10.

Students will also use the ellipsis within their quotations where they wish to show that there is more said, but that the information is not required for their current writing.

20 Most Common Punctuation Mistakes People Make

Well, you have gone through all of the different punctuation marks that you will use within your writing and how to use them. So how do we get it wrong? We really do need to “check my grammar and punctuation” as we simply make too many mistakes within our writing on an all too frequent basis.

The following are many of the frequently made errors that our comma editor online free will help you to spot and eliminate:

  1. Its vs. It’s: In most cases when you are using an apostrophe you will be indicating possession such as with Mary’s dog. However, in this case of misused words Its is itself a possessive word without any apostrophe. The use of the apostrophe, in this case, is to show a contraction with It’s actually being “It is.”
  2. Incorrect possessive nouns. Consider the following: “The dog’s bones were all finished.” Was there only one dog? If there were multiple dogs the apostrophe should appear after the “s”: “The dogs’ bones were all finished.”
  3. Writing a plural using an apostrophe: often people can get carried away and will overuse the apostrophe and place it before the “s” when all they are trying to do is create plurals (not plural’s.)
  4. Overuse of exclamation marks. You should not be using the exclamation mark to end each and every sentence within that all-important paragraph. Save it to the last so that you can make a real impact!
  5. Using a comma when you should have used a semicolon: Knowing when to use a comma vs semicolon is very important if you want people to really understand what you want to say.
  6. The comma splice: when you have two independent clauses in a sentence you cannot separate them simply with a comma. Knowing how to fix comma splices is important as there are a few options open to you. Use a semicolon instead of the comma, use a conjunction with the comma, or split into two sentences.
  7. Using a semicolon when you should have used a colon: our semicolon check will help you to spot this common error. When you will start a further explanation or make a list you should be using a colon.
  8. Using a dash between word instead of a hyphen: when you join two words there should not be a gap between the words and the hyphen to make it appear as a dash.
  9. Placing punctuation outside of quotation marks: Unless you are writing in British English your final punctuation for the quotation should always be within the quotation marks.
  10. Missing the Oxford comma: when you create a list you should have a comma before the final item in that list. This rule, however, is not always observed in areas such as journalism or if you are using the AP style. For academic writing however you should always include the Oxford comma.
  11. Overuse of commas: For some, using a comma, can be a real joy, and they will find themselves, using them prolifically. The comma would usually indicate where there is a pause or a transition so do not use where it is not required.
  12. Dash punctuation rules: there is, in fact, no hard and fast rule over whether there should be space around your dash. However, whatever you choose, use it consistently.
  13. Not using a comma for an introductory phrase or word: when you use words and phrases such as “However”, “In the Beginning”, “But” and others you should follow them with a comma.
  14. They’re vs. There vs. Their: this is another area in which you must understand the difference between using the apostrophe for a contraction and not for making a possessive.
  15. Creating an incomplete comparison: for example: “Our punctuation editor free is faster and more accurate.” Faster and more accurate than what? The full sentence should be: “Our punctuation editor free is faster and more accurate than trying to do the work yourself manually.”
  16. Run on Sentences: these are sentences that contain two clauses without any punctuation between them. Usually, the best way to fix this is by splitting the two clauses into two independent sentences. Alternatively, use conjunction and a comma or a semicolon.
  17. Fragments: a sentence as a minimum should have a subject and a verb: “The dog sat.” If it is missing one or even both then the sentence would be considered a fragment. To fix this issue you must simply add what has been omitted.
  18. Passive voice use: while not strictly “illegal” the use of the passive voice is frowned on. You should use the active voice as it is more concise and makes the subject of the sentence obvious. Active voice has the subject before the verb while passive voice has the verb acting on the subject.
  19. A dangling modifier: this is when you drop in a descriptive phrase but it simply does not apply to the noun that follows it. For example: “Hoping to get better treatment, the jailor was unimpressed with the bribe”
  20. Do’s and Don’ts: Not only does this look awkward it is also incorrect, sometimes! Unfortunately, it will depend on the specific academic style you are using as to whether it is acceptable to turn “Do” into a plural using an apostrophe in this isolated case. Chicago style would require you to instead use “Dos and Don’ts”.

Are There Easy Ways to Check Your Punctuation?

Looking at all of the above you can see why so many will get confused over what is full stop punctuation and what punctuation after colon use is acceptable. There are simply so many editing punctuation mistakes that it can be hard to know where to start looking and how you will check them all in the time that you have available to you. Thankfully, if you want to “check my essay punctuation errors free” you can do so with our effective tool.

What Can Our Punctuation Editor Free Do for You?

Our tool is able to provide you with a highly comprehensive check of your writing that will take just a few minutes of your time. The actual tool itself will take just seconds to highlight the errors in your writing and to make suggestions for the improvements required to correct your work. It is able to check your work for:

  • Grammar issues: the tool quickly reviews the text for more than 400 separate potential problems.
  • Punctuation: the software can recognize hundreds of potential ways in which you could misuse your punctuation.
  • Spelling: not only can it help you with poor spelling the software will help to spot many words that may have been used out of context.
  • Vocabulary: improve your writing by allowing the software to suggest alternative phrases and words to those you have used.
  • Plagiarism: ensure that you avoid any possibility of plagiarism by having our tool identify any wording that may be seen as copied.

Make a significant improvement to your writing and get better results from your work through the regular use of our punctuation editor free.