If you’ve ever written or edited an article or book on a scholarly subject, you probably know your e.g. from your i.e. and ibid. But especially if you spend time with older sources, you’re likely to encounter some abbreviations that haven’t entered the vernacular.
Many of us who write or edit for a living spend a lot of time in a word processor, typically either Microsoft Word or Google Docs (or both). It’s only natural, then, that we know a lot about these programs. But it’s always good to brush up on the basics.
For this month’s quiz we return to the subject of capitalization—specifically, the names and terms covered in chapter 8 of CMOS. In general, proper nouns are capitalized, whereas terms derived from or associated with them may not be, depending on context and other factors.
Coordinating conjunctions join pairs of words, phrases, or clauses, but when such a conjunction is interrupted by an intervening phrase or clause, it can be difficult to know where to put the commas. This is especially true when the conjunction joins the parts of a compound sentence.
If you’ve ever had to learn how to use commas with relative clauses—especially clauses introduced by which or that—you may have also encountered the word restrictive and its opposite, nonrestrictive. What do those two words mean, and what do they have to do with commas?
When you read a book that includes source citations, do you prefer footnotes or endnotes? Publishers usually assume that the average reader will prefer endnotes, on the principle that they’re less distracting than footnotes.
Since long before the days of email, the Manuscript Editing Department at the University of Chicago Press has had the honor of replying to comments and questions from users of The Chicago Manual of Style, usually typed but sometimes written in longhand or even called in by phone.
There’s more to nouns than people, places, and things. Some nouns are countable, and some are not. Most nouns are common, but some are proper. There are mass nouns and collective nouns, attributive nouns and nouns that can function as verbs. Some even take on adverbial roles.
A “the” at the beginning of a word or phrase that would normally be capitalized—including the name of an organization or the title of a work—presents a dilemma. When is the “the” capitalized? In Chicago style, the answer comes down to a few rules that can help you decide in each case.
Over the last year and a half (beginning in April 2021), Microsoft has been rolling out its “modern comments” to Word 365 users on both Windows and Mac platforms. If you use Word, and unless you have your updates turned off, there’s a good chance you have them by now, or will soon.