Punctuation Marks You Never Knew You Needed

I’m by and by asking you~ to bring back the Interjection Comma

Some say the mightiest weapon at any point envisioned was Anduril — the Fire of the West — the sword that was reforged from the shards of Narsil, which was broken at the Attack of Barad-dûr when Elendil tumbled to Sauron. You’ll likewise find a lot of defenders for Mjölnir, the legendary mallet that permits Thor to control the climate, fly, and — when the state of mind strikes him — open interdimensional entrances. What’s more, doubtlessly that these are totally bitchin’ weapons, yet let me present a defense for the obelus, and that signifies “simmering spit,” and which the ultra-custodian and notorious grammarian Isidore of Seville called The Bolt, since “like a bolt, it kills the unnecessary and penetrates the false.”¹

As a punctuation mark, the obelus ( — ) acquired notoriety in the seventh 100 years close by its more celebrated sister, the bullet, as an imprint utilized in the edges of Homeric texts to single out totally created sections that bad and uncivilized scholarly pundits had attempted to slip into the text for their own loathsome reasons (thus the killing and the cooking that Isidore was so advertised up about). Later on, it would be matched for certain cool dabs to make a hypolemniscus (⨪) and a lemniscus (÷), in the end recovering its wonderful standing as the most daring, road battling glyph around by consolidating the specks and the scramble to turn into a blade (†), which these days generally takes care of the reference bullet’s business when the mark gets drained.

Isidore didn’t concoct the obelus, yet they made him a holy person (probably he committed a few marvels far in excess of his work in the grammatic expressions), and in 1997 Pope John Paul II made him the authority supporter holy person of the Web. To ask Isidore for help when you go on the web, you ought to appeal to God that

“Through the intervention of Holy person Isidore, minister and specialist, during our excursions through the web we will coordinate our hands and eyes just to that which is satisfying to You and treat with good cause and persistence that multitude of spirits whom we experience.”

It’s simply unbelievably strong counsel that nobody at any point takes.

The genuine designers of the obelus — a threesome of destructive hired fighter librarians² named Zenodotus, Aristarchus, and Aristophanes of Byzantium — had a couple of different bolts in their quivers. These outright legends were answerable for the specks that would proceed to turn into the comma, colon, and period, yet they likewise teamed up to create the dabbed antisigma (Ꜿ), which was utilized to show that an essayist was rehashing the same thing, the diple (>), which was utilized to demonstrate a section specifically noteworthy, and the spotted diple (>·), to stamp entries where one of our custodians contradicted one more of our curators about how they were involving punctuation in any case.

Another punctuation mark with a great piece of verifiable family is the pilcrow (¶), some of the time called “The Visually impaired P,” which sounds like something one does around midnight on a setting up camp excursion. She looks a great deal like a retrogressive P, and she is natural to the vast majority as a glyph that shows up all around your report and won’t disappear when you press some unacceptable button in Microsoft Word. However, her genuine job is to check where a section starts and finishes — a unimaginably helpful piece of innovation back before anybody had remembered to design line breaks.

The explanation Woman Pilcrow looks like a regressive P is that she is as a matter of fact a “c.” The “c” represents capitulum, or “head,” meaning the top of a segment that she marks. As time went on, typesetters would get extravagant with the “c” and define a boundary through it (like so 𝇍) until it developed into the glyph we’re (to some degree) acquainted with today. Entertainingly (or unfortunately, contingent upon the fact that you are so connected to the pilcrow), the people accountable for enlightening compositions got so up to speed in making madly elaborate pilcrows that increasingly more space must be left between sections for the pilcrow to be embedded. Frequently, a cutoff time would forestall the illuminator having opportunity and energy to fill in the pilcrows, so the composition would go out into the world with simply the unfilled space, until in the end people acknowledged we didn’t require the pretty pilcrows all things considered. Furthermore, that is the account of why we indent passages. The indent is only a vast opening where a pilcrow used to be.³

Around the time that the pilcrow was doing its evaporating act, the punctuation mark with the coolest name of everything was starting to leave behind a legacy. The octothorpe (#) — less strangely called the hashtag or the pound sign — began life as a lb, which was the contraction for “libra pondo,” the Roman expression for a pound (pondo) in weight (libra). Exhausted typesetters began interfacing the letters with a cool little bar (like so — ℔), and it developed from that point into a #. Something comparable occurred with a form of lb that dropped that pointless b. As the solitary l turned out to be more adapted and procured its own flat bar (called a bit), it ultimately turned into the English pound sign (£). So £ and # are plunged from a similar grandaddy, which — I’m about to feel free to say it — is very interesting.⁴

I’m running a piece long here, so I’ll leave you with a couple of later developments in the craft of punctuation that have never appropriately taken off yet which are lots of enjoyable to ponder.

The in light of the fact that sign (∵) is basically the underground, fashionable person cousin of the considerably more fruitful hence sign (∴), however it doesn’t get a lot of purpose beyond logical way of thinking.

The stunningly sublime interjection comma (which tragically is excluded from unicode, so I can’t show it here) will liberate you from the oppression of finishing a sentence since you are amped up for something. What’s more, its faithful comrade the inquiry comma allows you to delay to raise a typographical eyebrow without leaving your thinking completely. Ideal for individuals are not set in stone.

The interrobang (‽) is a blend of the interjection and the question mark that is for when you need to be shocked and earnest at the same time.

The commash (, — ), and its faithful comrades the colash (: — ), the semicolash (; — ), and the stopdash (. — ) carried on with full and rich lives from Shakespeare’s time the whole way through the Victorian period, however they’ve pretty much vanished today, which is most likely for something good.

At last, the incongruity mark ( ) is one of many generally bombed endeavors (tracing all the way back to 1580) to promote an image that can be utilized to demonstrate that an essayist is making a joke — something that would be independently valuable for anybody endeavoring to convey subtlety on the Web. However, until it finds its balance, we who really do sometimes attempt to be entertaining on the web without being misconstrued should do what we’ve generally finished — send up a request to St. Isidore of Seville and overlook the remarks.

On the off chance that you partook in this article, you’ll track down parcels to like in my bulletin about puzzles, word games, and general word nerdery. If it’s not too much trouble, consider buying in!


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