How to End » Literature and Language » How to End a Quote?

How to End a Quote

How to end a quote? The quote that does not belong to a larger sentence always ends with a period. If the quote is a part of a sentence, the end of this quote depends on the larger sentence.

How to end a quote? Use a period or a comma before the ending quotation marks depending on the sentence. The quote ends with a period if it is not a part of a larger sentence. The quotation that is a part of a larger sentence determines the punctuation at its end if the sentence continues after the quote.

Commas and periods go before the ending quotation marks, be they a part of the quote or not.

End the quote with a period if it is as well the end of the sentence.

He said, "I must check it."

They studied the poem "Darkness."

How to end a quote? Use a comma if the quote is a part of a larger sentence.

"I need some help," he said, and looked at her hopefully.

"I want someone to tell me," he said, "how to solve this problem."

Use a comma as a guide to a quote.

If the comma belongs to the quote, include it in the quotation marks. "Wait," John said, "I am not quite ready yet."

Use exclamation point and question mark in case of need.

"Can you help me?" she asked. She looked at him and added, "What must I do to get your help?"

Question mark, exclamation point, colon, and semicolon are not always used within quotation marks. They are used after the quotation mark if they are not a part of the quotation.

Mary asked, "What are you doing?"

Do you know Lord Byron's poem "Darkness"?

If the quote ends with a question mark or exclamation point, these punctuation marks are written independently on a larger sentence after the quote.


  • Commas and periods always precede the concluding quotation mark. Other punctuation marks may precede or follow the quotation mark.
  • In American English the period is written before the ending quotation mark.
  • In British version of English, the period is written after the ending quotation marks.
  • In British style, only punctuation marks that are part of the quote are included within the quotation marks. Other punctuation marks follow the concluding quotation marks.
  • American publishers prefer the American style.

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