A case of hyphen death

Grammar nerds are always bemoaning the death of the apostrophe. It seems that no one knows when to use one. But the misuse and abuse of the apostrophe pales in comparison to the treatment of the noble hyphen. And nowhere is that treatment worse than on the Yahoo! front page.

The writer manages to get one hyphen correct, but neglects to include the second:

fp 35-year old

Omitting a hyphen (or two) in an age is one of the top three hyphen errors you’ll find on Yahoo!.

Just as bad as omitting a hyphen is including one where it’s not necessary, like here:

fp 3-days

Oops. Here’s another case of a missing hyphen:

38 pound

The hyphen is needed to join 38 and pound in a compound adjective. Let’s not overlook the missing apostrophe! It’s needed to indicate the contraction of let us: let’s.

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2 Responses to “A case of hyphen death”

  1. ericjbaker Says:

    I agree. A reader can buzz over a missing apostrophe and still easily understand the writer’s intent. A missing hyphen can change the meaning rather dramatically.


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