Commas with Quotations


Material quoted in the form of dialogue or from text is traditionally introduced with a comma (but
see 6.63, 13.17). If a quotation is introduced by that, whether, or a similar conjunction, no comma is
It was Thoreau who wrote, “One generation abandons the enterprises of another like stranded vessels.”
She replied, “I hope you aren’t referring to us.”
Was it Stevenson who said that “the cruelest lies are often told in silence”?
He is now wondering whether “to hold, as ’twere, the mirror up to nature.”
For the location of a comma in relation to closing quotation marks, see 6.9. For quoted maxims and
proverbs, see 6.51. For detailed discussion and illustration of the use or omission of commas before
and after quoted material, including dialogue, see 13.18, 13.48–56, and the examples throughout
chapter 13.

Source: The Chicago Manual of Style


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