What is a Full Stop?
A full stop is the most common punctuation mark (.) to come at the end of a sentence. The period signals to a reader that a sentence is complete.
Where are Full Stops used?
- Indicate the end of a sentence.
- Indicate the end of a fragment.
- Are used in some abbreviations.
- Are used in website addresses.
End Of A Sentence
A sentence always contains a subject and a finite verb. In order to check if you have a subject, ask who or what before the verb. A pronoun may replace this subject. A sentence always starts with a capital letter and ends with a full stop.
Example: They rode towards the island.
End Of A Fragment
If there is no subject or verb, it is a fragment, not a sentence. It also begins with a capital letter and ends with a full stop. The full stop marks the end of a group of words that are used for emphasis.
Examples: The children slept. No sound. A time of peace and contentment.
Tip: In formal writing, avoid using fragments. In fiction, use them often for specific effect.
An abbreviation is a shortened version of a word. It usually ends with a full stop. However, in British English, we only add a full stop if it does not end with the last letter of the word.
Examples: Use the full stop for Jan. and Prof., but not for Mr and Mrs.
Next in the series is Punctuation Series: Know Your Commas. Stay tuned.