for Standard American English
Colons introduce examples, explanations, summaries, series, and quotations.
Commas separate main clauses in sentences that are joined by coordinating conjunctions.
Ellipsis points indicate an omission from a direct quotation, or suggest fragmented speech, or a thought that trails off.
Em Dashes are used to set off a word or clause within a sentence more emphatically than with commas.
En Dashes are used to indicate a range of numbers.
Exclamation points are used to end emphatic statements.
Hyphens are used to form compound words and to add certain prefixes.
Parentheses enlcose supplemental material within sentences.
Periods are used to end declaritive and exclamatory sentences.
Question marks are used to end direct questions.
Quotation marks are used to enclose direct quotations.
Semicolons are used to join main clauses in a sentence.
Slashes are used to indicate options and unindented lines of poetry.