Often asked: When to use dashes?

When to use a dash or hyphen in a sentence?

A hyphen joins two or more words together while a dash separates words into parenthetical statements. The two are sometimes confused because they look so similar, but their usage is different. Hyphens are not separated by spaces, while a dash has a space on either side.

When should dashes be used instead of commas or parentheses?

Dashes are considered less formal than parentheses; they are also more intrusive. If you want to draw attention to the parenthetical content, use dashes. If you want to include the parenthetical content more subtly, use parentheses.

How do you know when to hyphenate?

Generally, you need the hyphen only if the two words are functioning together as an adjective before the noun they’re describing. If the noun comes first, leave the hyphen out. This wall is load bearing.

Can you use a dash instead of a comma?

Use Dashes in Place of a Comma Em dashes can be used in pairs to replace commas when writing a parenthetical or interruptive phrase. The dashes have a slightly more emphatic feel, making the reader focus on this information that is set inside the special marks.

Can you use dashes in formal writing?

Did you know that dashes are informal punctuation? When writing a formal letter or another kind of document, you should always try to avoid informal punctuation symbols. Dashes are one example; exclamation marks are another. Dashes can be replaced by several other punctuations including commas, colons and brackets.

What is the difference between a dash and a comma?

An em dash is most often used to indicate a pause in a sentence. It’s stronger than a comma, but weaker than a period or semicolon.

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How do you use dashes?

Dashes To set off material for emphasis. Think of dashes as the opposite of parentheses. To indicate sentence introductions or conclusions. To mark “bonus phrases.” Phrases that add information or clarify but are not necessary to the meaning of a sentence are ordinarily set off with commas. To break up dialogue.

What is the difference between brackets dashes and commas?

Your choice of dashes, parentheses or commas will be determined partly by the level of formality of your writing. Commas are more formal than dashes or parentheses. They are also less intrusive. Dashes are less formal than commas or parentheses.

Do you hyphenate on time?

Your delivery was on time. When a multiword phrase is used as an adjective, then you use hyphens to join up the words. We will deliver it on time. No hyphen because it is used as an ordinary idiomatic prepositional phrase.

Do you hyphenate pre and post?

In a previous tip, I shared that pre – and post – are normally joined prefixes, i.e., they are not hyphenated, except when the term is capitalized. In the case of pre – the hyphen is used if the next word starts with a vowel. A joined prefix is never used as a separate word before the one it modifies.

Is Double check hyphenated?

Double – check is a hyphenated compound word, which is a term composed of two words joined together by a hyphen. Note that double – check is correctly rendered with a hyphen, though the term is also seen as two separate words, as in double check.

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How do you use double dash in a sentence?

Double dashes are used instead of commas (or parentheses) to interrupt a sentence. The phrase separated by dashes must be grammatically inessential, by which I simply mean that the sentence will still work without that phrase.

What is Dash example?

A dash can be used between times and dates. (A dash will usually replace the words from…to or between…and.) For example: USSR existed 1922-1991.

How do I make an em dash in Windows?

To make an em dash, press and hold Alt, then type 0151.

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