Article »

Chapter 7 - Brackets

This article is about Chapter 7 - Brackets — enjoy your reading!


Brackets are used to enclose editorial interpolations, corrections, explanations, or comments in quoted material.


Resist the temptation to use "[sic]," which in Latin means "that's your mistake, fella, not mine," to point out a mistake in a quotation. Instead, try to fix the problem in the quoted passage.

Sic 'em

"This law does not apply in our grate [sic] state."

Better: "This law does not apply in our [great] state."

The expression "[sic]" can also be used to show that something that looks strange is intentionally written that way:

"He used the name e. e. cummings [sic]."

Intrusions of the Writer in Quotations

Use brackets to enclose an intrusion of the writer in a quotation.

Intrusion in a Quotation

"We refuse to consider [the Jones Report]."

Notice that inserting bracketed material does not prompt a need for the "ellipsis signal": three dots used to show omission.


Previous: Parentheses and Other Punctuation Next: Parentheticals Within Parentheses

Have a discussion about this article with the community:


Use the citation below to add this article to your bibliography:


"Chapter 7 - Brackets." STANDS4 LLC, 2017. Web. 19 Nov. 2017. <>.

Free Writing Tool:

Grammar Checker

Improve your grammar, vocabulary, and writing -- and it's FREE!

Improve your writing now:

Download Grammar eBooks

It’s now more important than ever to develop a powerful writing style. After all, most communication takes place in reports, emails, and instant messages.