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Are my Quotation Marks in the Right Place?

Which sentences are punctuated correctly?

  1. “Thanks, for being so concerned, but I’m all right.”
  2. “Thanks, for being so concerned, but I’m all right”.
  3. “Finally”. My mother rose to her feet. “Your father is home.”
  4. “Finally.” My mother rose to her feet. “Your father is home.”

If you answered 1 and 4, you are correct.


Periods and commas precede closing quotation marks, whether double or single. (CMOS)

All answers are based on the Chicago Manual of Style Online (CMOS 17) and the Merriam-Webster Online Dictionary.

3 thoughts on “Are my Quotation Marks in the Right Place?”

  1. Thanks John. I have been making that error for a long time and hesitating every time I did it! You true journalists are so smart. I have always been in awe! Lorraine 🥰🦎🦋

  2. We had some questions about the words “All Right.” Some said we should have used “alright.”

    According to Merriam-Webster:
    “All right or alright?: Usage Guide

    Although the spelling alright is more than a century and a half old, some critics have insisted alright is all wrong.
    Nevertheless, it has its defenders and its users, who perhaps have been influenced by analogy with altogether and already.
    Alright is less common than all right but is frequently found in informal writing and fictional dialogue.

    “Starting at a slower pace is perfectly alright.” — Alia Haley
    “Alright, it is a bargain. I will help you.” — Harold Bell Wright

    It is sometimes also used in more formal writing.
    “The first two years of the medical school were alright. — Gertrude Stein”

    1. Another question we had was about the comma after Thanks.
      “Thanks, for begin so concerned, but I’m all right.”

      According to CMOS:
      6: Punctuation
      6.16: Use of the comma
      Chapter Contents / Commas

      “The comma, aside from its technical uses in scientific, bibliographical, and other contexts, indicates the smallest break in sentence structure. It usually denotes a slight pause. In formal prose, however, logical considerations come first. Effective use of the comma involves good judgment, with the goal being ease of reading.”

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