…is supposed to go outside the quotation marks???
I was reading the Economist today and observed that they placed several periods outside of the comma…and some inside…
What they do:
- If the quote is a complete sentence (thought) they place the period inside the quotation marks. e.g…”Georgetown is a wonderful school.”
- If the quote is the title of a book or play the period is placed outside the quotation marks. e.g… For relaxation, they can listen to the world’s academic authorities disputing the pronunciation of Homer and illuminating the knotty wordplay of Plato’s “Republic”.
- If the quote is a phrase/words use to characterize a thought, the Economist places the period outside the quotations. e.g…When asked about Georgetown University, Majorman, expressed it was “wonderful”.
I’ve cross referenced my findings with the New York Times. It seems the NYT always places the period inside the quotation marks for complete & partial sentences (how I remember being taught in school). Grammarbook.com agrees with me.
FYI: The Economist is a London-based publication. Wikipedia explains the American style and British style here.
So are the rules of English set in stone or is our language evolving? Who’s right? Who’s wrong?
John Micklethwait is Editor-in-chief of the Economist
Well, you know what they say, “when in Rome”. *snickering*