Punctuation marks: Exclamation mark (!)

The main use of the exclamation mark is to end sentences that express:

  • an exclamation:

Ow! That hurt!

Hello! How are you?

  • direct speech that represents something shouted or spoken very loudly:

‘Look up there!’ she yelled.

  • something that amuses the writer:

Included on the list of banned items was ‘crochet hooks’!

  • An exclamation mark can also be used in brackets after a statement to show that the writer finds it funny or ironic:

She says she’s stopped feeling insecure (!) since she met him.

People tend to use a lot of exclamation marks in informal writing such as emails or text messages, but you should avoid using them in formal writing.

 

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