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Old 29th February 2012, 09:32 PM   #1 (permalink)
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double semi colons

Okay, I know I'm obsessed with them. But i read a sentence in GRRM which had a double semicolon in a sentence, divided by 5 words, and it's really annoyed me. think of the count I could have if I'm allowed to do such things.

I can't find the exact sentence, but is there any occasion when this is technically okay?

(BTW, it read very wrong to me.)
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Old 29th February 2012, 09:36 PM   #2 (permalink)
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Re: double semi colons

i'm not a grammarian, but I think you probably could. man proposes:god disposes: satan encloses?
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Old 29th February 2012, 09:37 PM   #3 (permalink)
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Re: double semi colons

If it reads wrong to you then I'd probably avoid using them, but in some situations it could work - if used correctly.


EDIT: Welcome to the SFF Crons, 11Comandment.


Quick google search and pulled this off a post where somebody asked the same question:

Quote:
-- Are double semicolons; used thusly (albeit incorrectly); acceptable?

You generally only use multiple semicolons when listing things and the use of a comma would be confusing:

Attending was George W. Bush, the president of the US; Tony Blair, the prime minister of the UK; and Saddam Hussein, the president of Iraq.

Otherwise, if you need to use double semicolons, there is probably something wrong with your sentence contruction. It's not grammatically incorrect, but it's stylistically awkward.
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Old 29th February 2012, 09:41 PM   #4 (permalink)
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Re: double semi colons

Cheers Wiz. Good to be here!
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Old 29th February 2012, 09:43 PM   #5 (permalink)
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Re: double semi colons

another eg of what you can get away with when you've made it? (although this was in game of thrones.)
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Old 29th February 2012, 09:43 PM   #6 (permalink)
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Re: double semi colons

well, springs, do you know what always looks wrong to me, my marmite loving friend? the word 'that'

just kidding. you know i loves ya
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Old 29th February 2012, 09:45 PM   #7 (permalink)
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Re: double semi colons

Quote:
Originally Posted by 11thCommandment View Post
well, springs, do you know what always looks wrong to me, my marmite loving friend? the word 'that'

just kidding. you know i loves ya
We all have our little things we hate. For me it is 'then', I detest 'then' used in a sentence.

That happened, and then this happened... *shudder*


of course there are situations where you just have to use the word.
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Old 29th February 2012, 09:45 PM   #8 (permalink)
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Re: double semi colons

I have truly truly killed my that habit, and now pick it up in every else I read.

(Don't give WP ideas; he's hoping to keep me busy on my edit... ) - and will no doubt....

@WP. Oh dear. That's all I'm saying; enjoy the redpenning.
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Old 29th February 2012, 09:46 PM   #9 (permalink)
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Re: double semi colons

just noticed you said 'semicolon' not 'colon'. i really do need to get new glasses
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Old 29th February 2012, 09:47 PM   #10 (permalink)
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Re: double semi colons

Quote:
Originally Posted by springs1971 View Post
I have truly truly killed my that habit, and now pick it up in every else I read.

(Don't give WP ideas; he's hoping to keep me busy on my edit... ) - and will no doubt....

@WP. Oh dear. That's all I'm saying; enjoy the redpenning.
Don't worry Springs, I'm far more forgiving of it in other people's work, its just a personal taste thing.
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Old 29th February 2012, 09:47 PM   #11 (permalink)
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Re: double semi colons

Ah, I was going to say I use multiple semi-colons to list things, but not for anything else. A sentence would get too clumsy, at least to my mind.
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Old 29th February 2012, 09:47 PM   #12 (permalink)
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Re: double semi colons

then or suddenly. suddenly, there was a crash, then suddenly, a boom...

i hear you WP
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Old 29th February 2012, 09:50 PM   #13 (permalink)
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Re: double semi colons

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Originally Posted by 11thCommandment View Post
then or suddenly. suddenly, there was a crash, then suddenly, a boom...

i hear you WP
Yes! You know what happens when I read suddenly? I pause for effect. Why am I pausing when its a 'sudden act'? Shouldn't I be reading quicker, not pausing? But that is the effect 'suddenly' has on me.
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Old 29th February 2012, 09:50 PM   #14 (permalink)
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Re: double semi colons

I think that's grammatically correct, Aber,

I have a lot of things I like in a book: good plot; good charaters; no that's; and lots of semi colons. But this wasn't a list it was prose.
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Old 29th February 2012, 09:51 PM   #15 (permalink)
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Re: double semi colons

think it's one of those blind spot things we get whilst writing. once we read it, it becomes glaringly apparent. too many 'thats' ruin the flow
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