Do I put the period inside or outside the quotation marks?

Short Answer

The period always goes inside the quotation marks. (This, however, is not true for other punctuation marks.)

Quotation Marks

Long Answer

The main problem that people have with using quotes is also a fundamental one: does the period at the end of the quote go inside or outside of the quotation marks?

The period is unique among punctuation marks in that, yes, it always goes inside the quotation marks. For instance, He said, “I’m going to the mall.”

However, this is not the case for all end punctuation marks. For other punctuation marks, where the closing punctuation goes depends on which idea it refers to (the sentence or the quote).

For example, if the sentence is a question, but the words in the quote are not, the question mark would go outside the quotation marks. For example, Has he already said, “I’m going to the mall”?

If, on the other hand, the sentence is not a question, but the words in the quote are, then the question mark would go inside the quotation marks. For example, He asked, “Can I go to the mall?”

7 thoughts on “English Grammar 101: Do I Put the Period Inside or Outside the Quotation Marks?

  1. Therese says:

    “What about a single word in quotes, at the end of a sentence, or a quoted phrase within a sentence? Example 1: He said she was “”funny.”” Example 2: He said, “”something here,”” which was ironic. Does the punctuation have to go inside the quote?”

    1. sofie says:

      was wondering the same thing

    2. GG says:

      The period ALWAYS goes inside the quotation marks.

  2. Willjan M. Alaurin says:

    Your the best. Nice.

    1. jack says:

      *You’re

      1. lomi says:

        And that is on period. #FACTS

  3. Bill Urban says:

    What about the title of book in quote mark at the end of a sentence. Should period go outside the quoro marks in this instance?

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.

Get a FREE QUOTE for Your Project Now!

Our expert editors and proofreaders are ready and available with affordable and personalized professional services.

YOU MIGHT ALSO LIKE
of vs. for

Of vs. For: The Quick Grammar Verdict

May 02, 2019 in Grammar

Tricky prepositions are nothing to laugh at. Yet sometimes the most basic words scramble your brain waves so tightly that your thoughts twist into tight…

disinterested vs. uninterested

I Am Uninterested in Your Disinterest: Uninterested vs. Disinterested

Nov 23, 2018 in Grammar

Uninterested and disinterested are often used interchangeably, and yet they have two very distinct meanings. Pretty interesting, right? Or perhaps you’re uninterested in the uninterested…

What Is an Adjective?

Dec 19, 2018 in Grammar

Adjectives serve a vital function in language. Without them, the world would be a flat, boring place. Want proof? Read the previous two sentences again—this…

Subscribe to Our Blog

Subscribe via RSS