In American English, a semicolon is used to connect two complete though closely related sentences, such as: I don't know when I'll finish; I'm sure it won't take long. A colon is used before an extended quotation, explanation, example, series, etc. and after the salutati of a formal letter. (This definition was found in my dictionary at home) Yet, someone from Australia wrote in another thread: An economy with words results in; A man downstairs wants to see you. .,, You are retrospectively welcome. Does British English use semicolons and colons differently than American English?