When using a colon to introduce a list in this way, capitalization and ending punctuation aren’t always necessary. You can introduce bullet points (or any vertical list) with a colon. Do not capitalize the first item after the colon (unless it's a proper noun). Rule 1: a colon can be used to introduce a list in a sentence or one that is numbered or bulleted. Introduction to lists. Consider the following sentences that preface a list with include: Essays may need to encompass lists that could throw off the design, structure, and grammar of the piece. However, a colon is not always needed to introduce a list. To announce, introduce, or direct attention to a list, a noun or noun phrase, a quotation, or an example/explanation. You may be required to bring many things: sleeping bags, pans, utensils, and warm clothing. My garden has four kinds of flowers: daffodils, tulips, roses, and chrysanthemums. This page has examples of colons before lists and an interactive exercise. Examples to Make the Point. To introduce a list of items. If it is used to highlight a list in a sentence, then the first clause must be independent. Introduction to lists. You can use a colon, as in the example above: This criticism can be interpreted in various ways: as an attack on Shakespeare’s presumption [etc. Words like “including” or “such as” are often used to introduce examples that further explain something mentioned in the sentence. Colons are also commonly used in prose to introduce quotations. When writing a list in sentence style, your introduction should be an independent clause, otherwise the colon is not justified. Examples: You know what to do: practice. Rule 2: this symbol can be used in between two sentences as long as the second clause illustrates the purpose or meaning of the first. I … ]. You can use a colon to draw attention to many things in your writing. A colon can be used to introduce a list when the introductory phrase is an independent clause. The categories listed below often overlap, so don’t worry too much about whether your intended use of the colon fits one category perfectly. Introduce the series and then write out the series after a colon. The list or series can also come before a summary statement: Harry's rejoinder was equally emphatic. If the list of items is quite a long one, you also need to use punctuation to introduce it. Use a colon to introduce an item or a series of items. Make sure not to use a colon after the verbs to be or to include. Colons can introduce a list, while commas are used to separate items in a list. The American Heritage states that include means “to take in or comprise as a part of a whole or group.” Likewise Merriam-Webster’s emphasizes that “Include suggests the containment of something as a constituent, component, or subordinate part of a larger whole.”. Essays normally follow a strict structure, but every so often, some thing comes alongside to debris with that structure. 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