Practice in Using Quotation Marks Correctly

A Punctuation Exercise

quotation marks

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Quotation marks—sometimes referred to as "quotes" or "inverted commas"—are punctuation marks that are most often used in pairs to identify the beginning and ending of a passage attributed to another speaker or writer and repeated word for word. Quotation marks can aid greatly in helping you avoid plagiarism—claiming someone else's work as your own without giving proper attribution or credit.

Therefore, using quotation marks correctly is an essential part of writing correct English. But doing so can be tricky. Practice using the following exercises.

Exercises

Insert quotation marks wherever they are needed in the sentences below. When you're done, compare your answers with those following the exercises.

  1. For several weeks in 2009, the Black Eyed Peas held the top two spots on the music charts with their songs I Gotta Feeling and Boom Boom Pow.
  2. Last week we read A Modest Proposal, an essay by Jonathan Swift.
  3. Last week we read A Modest Proposal; this week we're reading Shirley Jackson's short story The Lottery.
  4. In a famous New Yorker essay in October 1998, Toni Morrison referred to Bill Clinton as our first black president.
  5. Bonnie asked, Are you going to the concert without me?
  6. Bonnie asked if we were going to the concert without her.
  7. In the words of comedian Steve Martin, Talking about music is like dancing about architecture.
  8. The indie folk band Deer Tick sang What Kind of Fool Am I?
  9. Was it Dylan Thomas who wrote the poem Fern Hill?
  10. Uncle Gus said, I heard your mother singing Tutti Frutti out behind the barn at three o'clock in the morning.
  11. I've memorized several poems, Jenny said, including The Road Not Taken by Robert Frost.
  12. All our failures, wrote Iris Murdoch, are ultimately failures in love.

Answer Key

  1. For several weeks in 2009, the Black Eyed Peas held the top two spots on the music charts with their songs “I Gotta Feeling” and “Boom Boom Pow.”
  2. Last week we read "A Modest Proposal," an essay by Jonathan Swift.
  3. Last week we read "A Modest Proposal"; this week we're reading Shirley Jackson's short story "The Lottery."
  4. In a famous New Yorker essay in October 1998, Toni Morrison referred to Bill Clinton as "our first black president."
  5. Bonnie asked, "Are you going to the concert without me?"
  6. Bonnie asked if we were going to the concert without her. [no quotation marks]
  7. In the words of comedian Steve Martin, "Talking about music is like dancing about architecture."
  8. The indie folk band Deer Tick sang "What Kind of Fool Am I?"
  9. Was it Dylan Thomas who wrote the poem "Fern Hill"?
  10. Uncle Gus said, "I heard your mother singing 'Tutti Frutti' out behind the barn at three o'clock in the morning."
  11. "I've memorized several poems," Jenny said, "including 'The Road Not Taken' by Robert Frost."
  12. "All our failures," wrote Iris Murdoch, "are ultimately failures in love."
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Your Citation
Nordquist, Richard. "Practice in Using Quotation Marks Correctly." ThoughtCo, Mar. 10, 2021, thoughtco.com/practice-using-quotation-marks-correctly-1691730. Nordquist, Richard. (2021, March 10). Practice in Using Quotation Marks Correctly. Retrieved from https://www.thoughtco.com/practice-using-quotation-marks-correctly-1691730 Nordquist, Richard. "Practice in Using Quotation Marks Correctly." ThoughtCo. https://www.thoughtco.com/practice-using-quotation-marks-correctly-1691730 (accessed August 4, 2021).