Guidelines for best punctuation rules are for a good writing style. These guiding principles help check my punctuation and assist readers to understand what has been written. An online punctuation checker is useful in correcting punctuation errors. Continue reading
# What’s In A Name
Regardless of where you are, perhaps you will recognize this symbol and call it by different names. You may either call it a pound or a number sign. In the world of social media and Twitter, this symbol is called a hashtag. Unfortunately, none of these names are right. An engineer at Bell Labs revealed that the punctuation is called an octothorpe. At & T made the symbol mainstream by placing it on their touch tone phones in 1968.
So how did it get its name? The octo denotes its eight points. The Thorpe, on the other hand, may have gotten its name from the old English word thorp which means “village.” It also refers to the symbol’s appearance of eight little fields within a central square. However, others believed that researchers from Bell Labs were just really huge fans of the late former Olympian Thorpe and was just looking for a syllable to complete their new word.
@ A Funny Name Worldwide
We all know it as the at-sign attached in email addresses. However, throughout the world, it is known by different funny names. For the Dutch, it is called monkey’s tail. An Israeli calls it a strudel. No, they are not promoting a new bakery but are just describing the symbol. Shorthand use of the @sign can be traced back to the 15th century. It took English speakers some time to decide on a name. In other parts of the world, meanwhile, the Russians call it “little dog,” the Italians “small snail,” and for the Bosnians, it’s “crazy A.”
! Exclamation Point
The exclamation point is used for expressing strong emotions on paper since the 15th century. However, not until the 1970s did it get a dedicated key in the typewriter. Before, interjections can be attached to a work by typing a period, backspace, and apostrophe above it. The Secretarial manuals of the 1950s called it Franken symbol a bang not to be mistaken with an interrobang, which is an exclamation point overlapping a question mark to signify incredulity. This symbol is not being used already?
¶ It used to be that the paragraph symbol was not only an essential punctuation mark but also a Medieval style icon. During the Middle Ages, there were really no set rules for paragraph indentions or using line breaks to denote a change in topic. What was then used for indicating a new paragraph was the ¶even if they were placed in the middle of a line.
The pilcrow was ornately drawn in red color by a highly-trained scribe called rubricators. These symbols were often added at the end of the manuscript. If the rubricator had a deadline, they opted to skip the addition of the pilcrow. Eventually, the symbol was no longer used in pages.
& A More Complicated Meaning
We use the & sign or ampersand to establish relationship between two things. In the end credit of movies, for example, two names will be joined by & and others by the word and. In the Writer’s Guild of America, the former means two writers had a direct collaboration. The latter, on the other hand, means the two writers worked independently at some point.