Click on the Play button to hear a message from Anne.
A dash is a horizontal line, not to be confused with a hyphen.
The are two types of dash.
- The en-dash (the width of the letter n)
- The em-dash (the width of the letter m)
The en-dash is used unspaced for ranges of years.
A spaced en dash can also be used as an alternative to brackets, for an aside.
It’s a long way – further than you’d imagine – from Lands End to John O’Groats.
Some usage of these dashes are country-dependent.
In British English …
An em-dash is used to indicate interrupted dialogue.
“Oh! Jeremy, what are you doing? Is that a knife—“
In US English …
The em-dash is used unspaced as an alternative to brackets, for an aside.
It’s a long way—further than you’d imagine—from Lands End to John O’Groats.