A Few Hyphen Issues

Margie Wakeman Wells The Hyphen 4 Comments

When a word ends in -ly, do not hyphenate it to the word after it.

…poorly constructed edifice…
…newly build condos…
…recently deceased partner…

Though the suffix -wise should be added to the word and made a solid word, this leads to some very strange-looking words.

…punctuationwise, what do you…
…made the decision doctorwise…

It might be best in these instances to go ahead and hyphenate the suffix to the word. (And, by the way, it would probably be a good idea to try to avoid creating these combinations in your own speech.)

There is more to say on hyphens. We will revisit these from time to time.

Happy punctuating!


Comments 4

  1. Hi, Margie.

    Would two adjectives, the first of which ends in “ly,” and which are both modifying the same noun be an exception, as in “friendly-faced woman”?

  2. Margie,

    What about in the instance of classroom training wise or state licensure testing wise? How would you handle a phrase like that?

    1. Post

      Hi, Alice.

      I just posted a blog about this. When the noun is more than one word, then the prefix or suffix is hyphenated to it.

      …classroom training-wise…
      …state licensure testing-wise…

      This “wise” ending is problematic as it was never really meant to be added to this type of word.

      Have a terrific day.


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