The full stop, also known as a period, is a fundamental piece of punctuation that signals the end of a sentence. This common punctuation mark is typically taught in primary school and is always placed at the end of a declarative sentence, usually followed by a single space.
The Role of the Full Stop
The full stop, or period, is a punctuation mark in English that expresses the end of a sentence. It is one of the most used punctuation marks and the most common way to conclude a sentence. When used to abbreviate, a period is typically placed after the shortened word.
The period is also known as a full stop because it signals a speaker or reader that the sentence has come to an end. For example, consider the sentences: “The dog is brown. My sister’s name is Lisa. We use a period at the end of sentences that are statements. I like to eat pizza. School starts on Wednesday. The baby’s name is Grace.”
Full Stop vs. Period: A Transatlantic Difference
There is no difference between American and British English when it comes to the term for the punctuation mark used to end declarative sentences. Both terms are correct and can be used interchangeably. However, the use of a full stop to emphasize a complete sentence or idea is a trend that is becoming increasingly popular among Americans, likely due to the influence of British English, which often uses a full stop in this way. This usage can be helpful in making sure that your meaning is clear, so it is worth considering if it is something you could use in your own writing.
The Rules for Using a Full Stop
A full stop marks the end of a sentence that is not a question or an exclamation. Following the same rule, use full stops at the end of the last item in a list that’s made up of sentence fragments. Full stops and commas are two of the most common punctuation marks. A full stop ends a sentence, while a comma denotes a pause, breaks up a list, or separates part of a sentence.
Full Stop, Dot, and Point: What’s the Difference?
A full stop is a punctuation mark that is used as a decimal separator and for other purposes. It is also called a point, and in computing, it is called a dot. It is sometimes called a baseline dot to distinguish it from the interpunct (or middle dot).
The Evolving Role of the Full Stop
According to linguistic experts, Gen Z are used to communicating via text with a series of short messages without full stops. Full stops, research shows, are very much the exception and not the norm in young people’s instant messages. In fact, the full stop has a new role in signifying an abrupt or angry tone of voice.
The Taboo of Periods in America
Despite the natural, vital nature of it, talking about periods is widely taboo. In the US, as in most of the world, menstruation is typically an off-limits, stigmatizing topic for all and a challenging, embarrassing, and negative experience for girls. By talking about them openly, we can help break the stigma and make them more positive experiences for everyone involved.
The Use of Semicolons
Semicolons can be used as thoughtful pauses between two complete ideas, without the need for conjunctions. They can also be used in complicated lists, to link main clauses together. The use of a full stop at the end of a message can be seen as polite, but it can also depend on the context and the relationship between the person sending the message and the person receiving it.
Alternatives to Full Stops
In written English, a period is a punctuation mark that signals the end of a sentence. A sentence typically ends with a period, but it can also end with an exclamation point or a question mark. There are a few things to remember when using full stops:
- We should always place them at the end of a sentence
- There should be no spaces between the last letter of the sentence and the full stop
- We should use one space between the full stop and the first letter of the next sentence
- If we write a sentence after the full stop, we should start it with a capital letter
Basic Punctuation Rules
It is important to use punctuation correctly in order to write more clearly and effectively. Some basic punctuation rules to follow are:
- Punctuation must be parallel. This means that if you start a sentence with a certain type of punctuation mark, you should end the sentence with the same type of punctuation mark. For example, if you start a sentence with parentheses, you should end the sentence with parentheses.
- Use em dashes sparingly. Em dashes can be used to create emphasis, but too many em dashes can make writing look cluttered.
- A colon appears at the end of the main clause. A main clause is a clause that can stand alone as a sentence. For example, “I have two cats: a black cat and a white cat.” In this sentence, the clause “I have two cats” is the main clause, and the clause “a black cat and a white cat” is a subordinate clause.
- Semicolons separate two independent clauses. An independent clause is a clause that can stand alone as a sentence. For example, “I have two cats; my sister has three.” In this sentence, each clause is independent and could be a sentence on its own.
In conclusion, the full stop punctuation mark is used to end a sentence. A full stop, also called a period, is a form of punctuation used to mark the end of a declarative sentence. In American English, a full stop is usually placed after the last letter in a sentence. In British English, however, a full stop may be placed after the last letter in a sentence, or it may be omitted altogether.