comma after direct speech (BrE vs. AmE; quotation): found," the

Discussion in 'English Only' started by majlo, Dec 23, 2005.

  1. Hey,
    "According to Dr. Lee, preliminary findings indicate that the death appears to be a suicide. It should be noted that no evidence of foul play has been found," the medical examiner's office said in a statement.
    Is it the right order of the punctuation marks? Do BrE and AmE differ in this respect?
    Thanks in advance
     
  2. la reine victoria Senior Member

    "According to Dr. Lee, preliminary findings indicate that the death appears to be a suicide. It should be noted that no evidence of foul play has been found", the medical examiner's office said in a statement.
     
  3. Nick

    Nick Senior Member

    Western USA
    USA, English
    I say it is correct as-is.
     
  4. la reine victoria, the excerpt I have given above is from www.news.google.com and the original source is Reuters Agency. Anyway, I can see that in AmE, you write a comma or a full stop first. What about BrE? Anyone? :)
     
  5. GenJen54

    GenJen54 Senior Member

    Downright Pleasant, USA
    USA - English
    I believe La Reine Victoria's example, with the comma after the quotation mark, is the standard for BE.

    In AE, it is pretty much standard in news-writing that any punctuation ending a sentence goes inside the quotation marks. There are exceptions to every rule, however, including this one.
     
  6. real Junior Member

    Argentina
    Argentina / español
    What does "as-is" mean?

    I have heard "I would say..." Is "I say" the form American people use?
     
  7. la reine victoria Senior Member

    'as-is' means 'as it is'.

    I would say, I say - both are used.
     
  8. foxfirebrand

    foxfirebrand Senior Member

    The Northern Rockies
    Southern AE greatly modified by a 1st-generation Scottish-American mother, and growing up abroad.
    We've had threads on this point of punctuation, and I didn't come away with any inkling that the [",] sequence was possible in BE, much less standard usage.

    Other BE stylists? Anyone have a stylebook source for this?

    My idea of the correct sequence is [,"] and [?"] and so forth for quote marks-- and the other way around for parentheses, [),] and [)."] and so forth.

    Real quibbles arise when the parenthetical or quoted passage is a question and the sentence containing it is not-- or vice-versa. Maybe someone else will have better luck than I did searching for the thread we made on that very topic.

    edit:
    well, here's the thread after all:
    http://forum.wordreference.com/showthread.php?t=39821&highlight=parentheses

    .
     
  9. panjandrum

    panjandrum PongoMod

    Belfast, Ireland
    English-Ireland (top end)
    First of all, it's not a very good sentence. Here is a shorter seasonal equivalent.

    "According to my friend Bill, turkey is boring. The stuffing tastes better," the dinner table said in a statement.

    In fact, having looked more closely, I think it is a dreadful sentence.

    "According to Dr. Lee, preliminary findings indicate that the death appears to be a suicide. It should be noted that no evidence of foul play has been found," the medical examiner's office said in a statement.

    Is Dr Lee the medical examiner?
    Is the medical examiner's office reporting what some other Dr Lee has said?
    Who said that no evidence of foul play had been found? Was it Dr Lee?

    The confusion arises because the medical examiner's office is quoted as saying something that includes their statement, in reported speech, of Dr Lee's findings.

    Anyway, I'd like to suggest that punctuation as above would be my preference, regardless of the quality of the statement as a whole:D
     
  10. la reine victoria Senior Member

    OK folks! I admit I was wrong. Senility will be my downfall. :eek:
     
  11. cuchuflete

    cuchuflete Senior Member

    Maine, EEUU
    EEUU-inglés
    Why doesn't the quoted portion end with a period/full stop?

    It appears to be a complete sentence.

    Once this is resolved, I can begin to worry about whether the comma belongs on one side of the ""s or another.

    With the ascendence of entropy,
    Cuchu
     

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