The Exclamation Point: The Rhetorical Primal Scream


Don't let your noseĀ get out of joint
About the exclamation point.

It amplifies at sentence end
The raw emotion we intend:

My wife ran off with my best friend.
My wife ran off with my best friend!


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  • If this is literally true,
    I am sorry.

  • In reply to 4zen:

    No need for commiseration. It was only an example of the "raw emotion" an exclamation point can express.

    My best friend happens to be my wife of 43 years. I wouldn't even want her to ran off with herself.

  • Which reminds me that they seemed to be overused in comics. However, going through the ones I have bookmarked for Sundays, it ended up 7 with !s and 8 without.

    Hence, my reaction is that I don't notice them, unless they stand out like sore thumbs.

  • They don't bother me either unless they're misused or overused.

    BTW, what a picture from outer space! Actually, it shows two galaxies colliding. Dazzling!

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