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Punctuate this...

"Woman without her man is nothing"

"King Charles I walked and talked half an hour after his head was cut off"

"James while John had had had had had had had had had had had a better effect on the teacher"

These are some phrases commonly used to illustrate the importance of punctuation in conveying meaning. How would you punctuate them?

I've set this as an essay question, as I don't want to put thoughts into people's heads - I want you to come up with your own opinion independently of anyone else. So please answer the question before reading what anyone else has put.

 


UserComment
cerealkiller
posted 13-May-2013 3:41pm  
Doesn't sound to me like these just have punctuation errors. Looks like grammar problems, word order, etc.
msgman
(reply to cerealkiller) posted 13-May-2013 5:42pm  
All three of those make perfect sense if punctuated correctly. That's why they're commonly used in tests.
Lysannus
posted 13-May-2013 6:56pm  
"Woman without, her man is nothing."

"King Charles I, walked and talked, half an hour after, his head was cut off."

"James, while John had had, had had, had had, had had, had had, had a better effect on the teacher."
LindaH
posted 13-May-2013 7:37pm  
Woman, without her man, is nothing. (I think)???

King Charles I walked and talked. Half an hour after, his head was chopped off.

The person talking about James and John seems to have a stuttering problem. I won't try that one.
LJD
posted 13-May-2013 8:01pm  
Woman, without her man, is nothing.
King Charles, I, walked, and talked half an hour, after his head was cut off.

James, while John had, had, had, had, had..... a better effect on the teacher,

The last one seems unfinished...
FordGuy
posted 14-May-2013 10:05am  
Woman without her Beer is nothing

King Charles I walked and talked half an hour after his Beer was cut off

James while John had Beer had Beer had Beer had Beer had Beer had Beer had Beer had Beer had Beer had Beer had Beer a better effect on the Beer
Enheduanna Survey Central Subscriber
posted 14-May-2013 10:52am  
"Woman: without her, man is nothing." [Or, if you want to be a little poetry-slam about it, "Woman without; her man is nothing."]

"King Charles I walked and talked; half an hour after, his head was cut off." [Or, a little sillier: "King Charles: 'I walked and talked half an hour!' After, his head was cut off.]

I don't see how you can make the last one into a reasonable sentence just with punctuation. (I googled the answer, which certainly solves it but which nevertheless leaves you with a terrible English sentence; the other two examples are at least reasonable sentences once they're punctuated.)
LindaH
(reply to Enheduanna) posted 14-May-2013 11:42am  
I looked up the last one too, and can see how/why it makes sense, but I think a period before the last 4 hads made more sense than the wikipedia answer.

While I was looking, I found this:

Buffalo buffalo Buffalo buffalo buffalo buffalo Buffalo buffalo

I showed and explained it to my 12 year old and he thinks it is hilarious.
JessicaWoman99
posted 14-May-2013 1:07pm  
Prince Harry came to Colorado with his clothes on
FordGuy
posted 15-May-2013 8:13am  
> Bill, I can't seem to find the parrot face emoticon.

laughing out loud If you beg long enough you get emoticons. Beer
Enheduanna Survey Central Subscriber
(reply to LindaH) posted 15-May-2013 10:58am  
I had to look that one up too. I found a Wikipedia page on it, my favorite part of which is a picture of some buffalo with the caption, "Bison engaged in a contest of dominance. This sentence supposes they have a history of such bullying with other buffalo, and they are from upstate New York."
LindaH
(reply to Enheduanna) posted 15-May-2013 11:21am  
laughing out loud
Irene007
posted 18-May-2013 10:32pm  
"Woman; without her man is nothing" (that's a load of crap if I ever read some!)

"King Charles; I walked and talked half an hour after his head was cut off"

"James; while John had had, had had, had had, had had, had had, had a better effect on the teacher"
Irene007
posted 18-May-2013 10:39pm  
All that made me hungry...
Irene007
posted 18-May-2013 10:43pm  
Seriously... It did....
Zang
posted 24-May-2013 1:52pm  
No
JessicaWoman99
posted 6-Dec-2013 4:38pm  
Prince Harry without woman is nothingsmiley:::smile
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