We often take punctuation for granted, but its evolution has been largely responsible for our ability to communicate meaning and convey emphasis with the written word. Believing that the best way to understand usage is to study it historically, Parkes focuses on how marks have actually been used. He cites examples from a wide range of literary texts from different periods and languages; the examples and plates also provide the reader with an opportunity to test Parkes's observations.
This long-awaited book will no doubt stimulate debate among writers, editors, literary critics, philosophers, linguists, rhetoricians, and historians. It is destined to become a standard reference work for anyone interested in the history and use of language.
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M. B. Parkes is Fellow of Keble College and Lecturer in Palaeography, Oxford University. He is the author of English Cursive Book Hands 1250-1500 (California, 1980).
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Book Description University of California Press, 1993. Hardcover. Book Condition: New. Bookseller Inventory # P110520079418