em dash(redirected from Em dashes)
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Related to Em dashes: en dashes
em dash vs. en dash
There are two similar but distinct punctuation marks called dashes: the en dash ( – ) and the em dash ( — ). In appearance, an en dash is slightly longer than a hyphen ( - ), approximately the width of a capital N, while an em dash is slightly longer than an en dash, approximately the width of a capital M (hence their names).
When we refer to dashes, we are usually referring to em dashes, as they are the more common punctuation mark of the two. However, it’s important to know the different ways that each mark is used.
em·dashor em dash (ĕm′dăsh′)
A symbol ( — ) used in writing and printing to indicate a break in thought or sentence structure, to introduce a phrase added for emphasis, definition, or explanation, or to separate two clauses.
[From its being the width of an m in printing.]
em dash(ˈɛmˌdæʃ) or
(Printing, Lithography & Bookbinding) printing a dash (—) one em long
Print. a dash one em long.
em dash, en dash - The em dash is the long dash used in punctuation whose length is based on the width of the letter M; the en dash is shorter (the width of an N) and the hyphen is even shorter.
See also related terms for punctuation.