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Parentheses ( ( ) ) are used to separate information that is not necessary to the structure or meaning of the surrounding text.
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punctuation [Lat.,=point], the use of special signs in writing to clarify how words are used; the term also refers to the signs themselves. In every language, besides the sounds of the words that are strung together there are other features, such as tone, accent, and pauses, that are equally significant (see grammar and phonetics). In English, stress, pausing, and tonal changes interlock in a set of patterns often called intonations. Such features are represented by punctuation, indicated by signs inserted usually between words, and often following the feature they mark.

The intonations of declaration are classified in three types, symbolized by the comma (,), used to separate words or phrases for clarity; the semicolon (;), used to mark separation between elements in a series of related phrases, generally in a long sentence; and the full stop, or period (.), used to mark the end of a sentence. Other intonations are shown by the exclamation point (!); the interrogation point, or question mark (?); the parenthesis [( )], used to set off a word or phrase from a sentence that is complete without it; and the colon (:), typically used to introduce material that elaborates on what has already been said. Quotation marks (“ ”) indicate direct quotation or some borrowing, and usually demand special intonation. The ellipsis (…) is used to indicate the place in a passage where material has been omitted or a thought has trailed off. The long dash (—) is especially used in handwriting for incomplete intonation patterns.

Punctuation of material intended to be read silently rather than aloud—the far more usual case today—has introduced refinements designed to help the reader: brackets ([ ]), a secondary parenthesis; capital letters; paragraphing; and indentation. Two other frequent signs are the apostrophe ('), marking an omission of one or two letters, or a possessive case, and the hyphen (-), marking a line division or an intimate joining, as in compound words. These last two are practically extra letters, and their use, belonging with spelling rather than with punctuation, is highly arbitrary.

Each written language has its tradition of punctuation, often very different from that used in English; thus, in German nouns are capitalized, and in Spanish the beginnings of exclamations and of questions are marked with inverted signs. See also accent.


See W. D. Drake, The Way to Punctuate (1971); Words into Type (3d ed. 1974); D. Hacker, A Writer's Reference (4th ed. 1999); Univ. of Chicago Press, The Chicago Manual of Style (15th ed. 2003).

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The left parenthesis "(" and right parenthesis ")" are used to delineate one expression from another. For example, in the query list for size="34" and (color = "red" or color ="green"), parentheses group the ORs together so they are a distinct entity from the AND.

In programming, parentheses are used to surround input parameters of a function call. For example, in C, the string compare statement strnicmp (itemA, itemB, 10) uses parentheses to group the ITEMA, ITEMB and 10 values handed over to the function.
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References in periodicals archive ?
What if we told you that there is a new parenthetical used in legal citations that is taking the appellate world by storm?
(31) It advises to cite the original source, "[w]henever possible." (32) That citation should appear in yet another parenthetical after the Rule 5.2 and 5.3 parentheticals, formatted as if the source were cited directly, and including whatever parentheticals of its own those rules require.
Mastering introductory signals for citations is a must for persuasive citation, as is use of parentheticals and pinpoint cites.
They call these items epistemic parentheticals. Also Estonian comprehensive grammar treats items such as ma tean and ma arvan as parenthetical items, without which the sentence would still be well-formed (Erelt, Kasik, Metslang, Rajandi, Ross, Saari, Tael, Vare 1993 : 103).
Quotes, Numbers, and Parentheticals. The patient calls the insurance company again.
Apropos of parentheticals, Rule 1.5 prescribes rules on their design (p.
Dates should be written European style: "1 January 1400." "Circa" is abbreviated as "ca." when used in parentheticals and endnotes; please spell out when used in the body of the article.
More fascinating to the narratologist are her discussion of orality features in the context of narrative, and her analysis of first-person epistemic parentheticals. What Brinton's study emphasizes quite decidedly is the narrative importance of orality features which have hitherto been marginalized as "oral substrates" or memory supporters or even fillers employed to smoothe out the rhyme (Visser's favorite explanation for nearly everything from anon to the historical present tense).
Given his remark in footnote 7 of"Function and Concept", my conjecture is that had he considered parentheticals such as those we have been here scrutinizing he would have inferred, from the fact that they have semantic content, that the only role they can play is to contribute that content to the contents of larger sentences in which they occur.
The purpose of this article is to help you develop a more persuasive and effective citation style by discussing development of a citation plan, the hierarchy of authority, the role of courts and precedent; the use of pinpoint cites, parentheticals, and signals; and placement of citations.
Citations to cases are listed by circuit and include detailed parentheticals.