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post #1 of 8 (permalink) Old 12-01-2009, 02:02 AM Thread Starter
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Quick Question for English Majors!

Hey all, been a long time but I have a quick punctuation question. When using block quotes (50 words or more) can you use anything other than a colon to introduce it? You can't use a comma or nothing at all, correct? Thanks and let me know if my question is poorly worded.
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post #2 of 8 (permalink) Old 12-01-2009, 03:39 PM
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Re: Quick Question for English Majors!

[quote author=aralls link=topic=161943.msg3437512#msg3437512 date=1259647367]
Hey all, been a long time but I have a quick punctuation question. When using block quotes (50 words or more) can you use anything other than a colon to introduce it? You can't use a comma or nothing at all, correct? Thanks and let me know if my question is poorly worded.
[/quote]
That's poorly worded.


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post #3 of 8 (permalink) Old 12-01-2009, 04:15 PM
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Re: Quick Question for English Majors!

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post #4 of 8 (permalink) Old 12-01-2009, 06:30 PM
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Re: Quick Question for English Majors!

Why not search for a style guide for the style of citation your prof requires? You'd get a sure answer then.

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post #5 of 8 (permalink) Old 12-01-2009, 06:32 PM
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Re: Quick Question for English Majors!

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post #6 of 8 (permalink) Old 12-01-2009, 06:36 PM
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Re: Quick Question for English Majors!

Colon is by far the most common, just because it's usually the one type that makes sense... but it's not stated explicitly in any of the big (MLA/APA) guides. A comma would be incorrect in any usage I can imagine.


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post #7 of 8 (permalink) Old 12-01-2009, 09:12 PM Thread Starter
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Re: Quick Question for English Majors!

Thanks guys. I did google quite a bit before asking, and found that most sites say a block quote is introduced with a colon. Wikipedia, without citing, states:

"If the quoted passage continues an obviously incomplete (unquoted) sentence that precedes it, a comma may be used instead, or no punctuation at all, depending on the sentence's syntax, and the following extract will usually begin with a lowercase letter."

And my options are either to use a comma or nothing to introduce the text, which continues in the block quote. Anyway, thanks for your help (especially looking through the MLA guide)!
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post #8 of 8 (permalink) Old 12-01-2009, 09:41 PM
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Re: Quick Question for English Majors!

In those cases, I usually precede the incomplete sentence inside the blockquote with ellipsis and do not capitalize it, but leave the colon at the end of my introduction. I'm not sure how correct this is in any style guide, I couldn't find anything specifically saying it was wrong or right, but I've never gotten any negative editing marks for it.


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