Use figures: The story is continued on page 48. Turn to page 72 to find out who was killed.
part time, part-time
Hyphenate when used as a compound modifier: She works part time. She has a part-time job.
See Numbers, percent, percentages.
When an abbreviation ends a sentence, no additional period is necessary at the end of the sentence. He lives at .
- space after
Include only one space after a period in all cases.
- quotation marks
Periods are placed within quotation marks.
- Plural nouns not ending in s
Add ’s: the alumni’s contributions, women’s rights.
- Plural nouns ending in s
Add only apostrophe: the churches’ needs, the girls’ toys.
- Nouns plural in form, singular in meaning
Add only apostrophe: mathematics’ rules, measles’ effects, General Motors’ profits, the United States’ wealth.
- Nouns same in singular and plural
Treat them as plurals: one corps’ location, the two deer’s tracks.
- Singular common nouns ending in s
Add ’s unless next word begins with s: the hostess’s invitation, the hostess’ seat.
- Singular proper names ending in s
Use only an apostrophe: Achilles’ heel, Dickens’ novels.
Note: President Thomas prefers the use of ’s with his name: President Thomas’s house is located on North 18th Street.
- Joint possession
Use possessive form after only the last word if ownership is joint: Fred and Sylvia’s apartment, Fred and Sylvia’s stocks. Use apostrophe after both if individually owned: Fred’s and Sylvia’s books. An ’s is required, however, when a term involves a plural word that does not end in s: a children’s hospital, a people’s republic.
Follow Webster’s New WorldCollege Dictionary. Hyphenate if not listed there. Some words without a hyphen: postsecondary, postgraduate, postseason.
It may be used but it is no longer capitalized because the agency is now the U.S. Postal Service.
The rules in prefixes apply. The following examples of exceptions to first-listed spellings in Webster’s New World College Dictionary are based on the general rule that a hyphen is used if a prefix ends in a vowel and the word that follows begins with the same vowel: pre-election, pre-eminent, pre-empt. Otherwise, follow Webster’s New World College Dictionary, hyphenating if not listed there. Some examples: prearrange, prehistoric, prenatal.
Generally do not hyphenate when using a prefix with a word starting with a consonant. Three rules are constant, although they yield some exception to first-listed spellings in Webster’s New World College Dictionary:
- Except for cooperate and coordinate, use a hyphen if the prefix ends in a vowel and the word that follows begins with the same vowel.
- Use a hyphen if the word that follows is capitalized.
- Use a hyphen to join doubled prefixes: sub-subparagraph.
A first performance or showing of a play, film, etc.
First in importance or rank; chief; foremost.
See Capitalization, president also Titles, occupational titles.
Principal is a noun and adjective meaning someone or something first in rank, authority, importance, or degree: She is the school principal. He was the principal player in the trade. Money is the principal problem. Principle is a noun that means a fundamental truth, law, doctrine, or motivating force: They fought for the principle of self-determination.
Use a hyphen when coining words that denote support for something: pro-abortion, pro-business, pro-labor.
See Titles, occupational titles.