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Editorial Style Guide

General Style Preferences: Punctuation

Ellipses are commonly used to indicate a sentence purposely left incomplete or the omission of a word, phrase, line, paragraph, or more from a quoted passage.

In a sentence, add a space before and after a three-dot ellipsis: She reported what the speaker said … and then followed up with her own comments.

If the words that precede an ellipsis make up a complete sentence, insert a period at the end of the last word before the ellipsis and follow it with a space before the ellipsis: The speaker said that he was happy to be running for office again. …

Ellipses are normally not used:

  • before the first word of a quotation, even if the beginning of the original sentence has been omitted
  • after the last word of a quotation, even if the end of the original sentence has been omitted, unless the sentence as quoted is deliberately incomplete

Note: An ellipsis is not three periods. To create an ellipsis:

On a PC: Alt+0133
On a Mac: option+semicolon
HTML and XML code: See the HTML chart in the Appendix

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