Accentuate the Positive
It may not be possible to go to a café or a boîte right now for pie à la mode, but there is an alternative. You can take this month’s quiz and test your knowledge of accents and other diacritical marks.
You know them when you see them, but do you know what they’re called?
Accents and other diacritical marks are common in French, Spanish, German, Italian, and many other languages. (A diacritic is a mark placed on or near a letter; some of these are referred to as accents, but many are not.) You’ll also see them occasionally in certain words that have been imported into English from another language—usually French, as in café and boîte and à la mode.
You can learn about diacritical marks, including their names and the languages they’re used with, in chapter 11 of CMOS 17. This quiz focuses on some of the more common marks and what they’re called.
Note: Style guides and dictionaries sometimes disagree. This quiz is designed to test your knowledge of The Chicago Manual of Style, 17th edition.
Chicago Style Workout 44: Accents
Top image: “Decorative Lettering,” by Malachi Ray Rempen. Itchy Feet © 2016. Used with permission.