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If I am quoting the first few words of one line of poetry and the last few words of the next line of poetry, should I use two sets of ellipses with a slash between them?

Yes. Clarity is worth the trouble of more punctuation. Let’s say you quote the following two lines of poetry: He had forty-two boxes, all carefully packed, With his name painted clearly on each: To make it clear to readers that you are quoting the beginning of one line and the ending of the next, use ellipses . . .

Published 22 November 2017

Why do periods and commas go inside quotation marks in MLA style?

The MLA Handbook notes, “By convention, commas and periods that directly follow quotations go inside the closing quotation marks” (88). Thus, in the following sentence, the comma is placed after taught: “You’ve got to be carefully taught,” wrote Oscar Hammerstein II. The rule is the same for a list of titles: Julio Cortázar wrote many short stories, including . . .

Published 1 February 2018

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