Mechanics

Properly use modifiers, parallelism, capitalization, and spelling

Mechanics refers to the rules that govern written language. Mechanics are conventions or rules that govern printed language. Mechanics evolve over time as technologies empower new methods of composing.


Written language has some elements that distinguish it from oral speech. Writers use marks on a page to help readers sort words, numbers, clauses, phrases, and sentences in ways that facilitate comprehension.

Some elements of mechanics are really obvious, such as

Some elements of language practice pertain to both written and oral discourse. This may explain why Grammar Handbooks and online websites (e.g., The Owl at Purdue University or Grammarly.Com or Wikipedia) disagree about whether or not some elements of discourse such as Modifiers, Parallelism (Parallel Structure), Punctuation or Sentence Fragments should be indexed under Grammar or Mechanics.

Related Concepts

Grammar refers to the conventions or rules that guide spoken or written language

Additional articles on Mechanics:

  1. Capitalization

    English has specific rules for capitalization. 1. Capitalize the first word of every sentence. The dog was running down the...

  2. Dashes

     What is a dash? A dash is a punctuation mark used to set off an idea within a sentence and...

  3. Ellipsis

    What is an ellipsis? An ellipsis is a punctuation mark that consists of three dots with a space before, after,...

  4. Italics

    A slanting font style called italics is used when writers wish to emphasize, or give special significance to, a word...

  5. Parentheses

    Parentheses (also called brackets in British English) are a punctuation mark used to contain text that is not part of the main...