Parentheses () Brackets [] Quotation marks ” ” Ellipsis …

Last Updated on April 2, 2021

Learn how and when to use parentheses (), brackets [], quotation marks ” “, ellipsis … in English with example sentences and ESL picture.

Big list of punctuation marks in English with examples. 

Parentheses ()

Parentheses, ( () ) are punctuation marks that show additional thoughts about a statement. In many scenarios, they can be replaced by commas without any changes to the meaning of the sentence.

Parentheses examples

  • The two brothers (Richard and Sean) were learning how to play guitar.
  • There are several books on the subject (see page 140).
  • Mount Everest (in the Himalayas) is the highest mountain in the world.
  • Anna (the girl from the school) helped me with my homework.
  • The dog ate the ice-cream cone. (His favorite flavor was chocolate.)

Brackets []

Brackets or Square brackets are punctuation marks ([]) that are used to show information of a technical nature, or information added by an editor. Even if this information is omitted entirely, the sentence would still make sense.


  • Was he [the defendant] there when you arrived?
  • Skiing at 80 [miles per hour] requires total concentration.
  • According to the travel book, “The hotel room costs about 230,000 đồng [about $10 U.S.].”

Quotation marks ” “

We use quotation marks for direct quotations in English.

Quotation marks examples:

  • “Excellent beer,” he said, wiping the froth from his mouth.
  • “It’s not important,” he said blandly.
  • “Well, I have shown you how to do this before, ” she said, unable to disguise her impatience.
  • “I feel I’ve really earned this, ” she said, taking up her mug of tea.
  • ” I told a fib about my age, ” little Tom said.
  • “It is a historic moment ,” he told journalists.
  • “Fine, thanks,” he replied in a cheerful manner.

Ellipsis …

An ellipsis is usually represented by three dots (…), although it can also be represented by three asterisks (***). This punctuation symbol is used to show that there has been an omission of some letters or words. In many cases, ellipses are used to cut statement short to avoid unnecessary or irrelevant words that have no impact on the meaning of the statement being made.


  • Show that there has been an omission of some letters or words.

He began to count to a hundred: one, two, three …

  • Cut off a quotation.

The director said, “These days, many people use their smartphones to browse the web…”

Other Examples:

  • To be continued…
  • You’ll never believe what I saw…
  • I don’t know…I’m not sure.
  • He drank and drank…and then drank some more.

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