Unsupported titles/Colon

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: U+003A, :
Basic Latin ;
U+FE55, ﹕

Small Form Variants
U+FF1A, :

Halfwidth and Fullwidth Forms
See also: , , , , , , ׃, , and ː


Punctuation mark[edit]


  1. Introduces a quotation.
    Mary gave advice to her children: a stitch in time saves nine.
    Patient: Is there a doctor in here?
  2. Introduces a sentence with the role of apposition with respect to the previous one.
    Luruns could not speak: he was drunk.
  3. Introduces the logical consequence, or effect, of a fact stated before.
    There was only one possible explanation: the train had never arrived
  4. Separation of clauses in a periodic sentence.
  5. Separates hours, minutes, and seconds when reporting time.
    The train leaves at 5:40.
  6. Separates numbers in a ratio.
    There is a 5:4 ratio of boys to girls in my class.
  7. Separation of a title and the corresponding subtitle.
    Star Wars Episode IV: A New Hope
  8. (information science) Separate elements of a bibliographic reference, such as chapter and verses of the bible, or volumes and pages of a work.
    John 3:14–16 (or John III:14–16)
  9. Used after a letter as a nonstandard representation of an umlaut or diaeresis, when technical limitations prevent the use of one.
    • 1990 January 26, porpentine [username], “Re: Mommy! Gene hit me first!”, in alt.rock-n-roll.metal, Usenet[1]:
      I agree, most of the people who are listening to Whitesnake/Skid Row/Guns-n-Roses-Dude/insert_your_favorite_cheese_metal_band now will have forgotten about them in a few years. I don't think you can say the same of, say, Fates Warning, King's X, or the older metal bands (Black Sabbath version 1, Blue O:yster Cult, Moto:rhead, arguably Aerosmith).
  10. (taxonomy) Separates different levels of an abbreviated taxonomy.
  11. Used in: : :.


For usage examples of this term, see Citations:Unsupported titles/Colon.

Related terms[edit]

  • (diacritical mark): ', "

See also[edit]



  1. (computing) Indicates a storage or media drive letter (with or without path).
    C: is the default system drive on Windows.
  2. (networking) Separates the parts of an IPv6 address.
  3. (Internet) Represents two eyes vertically aligned, in order to form emoticons.

See also[edit]


Punctuation mark[edit]


  1. Connects a suffix or clitic to a number, abbreviation or initialism.
    Hinta on TKY:n jäsenille 10 €, muille 20 €.
    The price is € 10 for the members of TKY, € 20 for all others.
    SAK:kin on samaa mieltä.
    Also SAK shares that opinion.

Usage notes[edit]

If a numeric expression consists of a number and a head word which indicates the case, the numeral is written without the case suffix:

Ostin 10 000 (read: kymmenellätuhannella) eurolla Nokian osakkeita.
Ostin 10 000 €:lla Nokian osakkeita.
I bought € 10,000 worth of Nokia's shares.

If a numeric expression consists of a number and a head word, and the numeral is in nominative singular, the head word is in partitive singular (base case), and the head word is an abbreviation, the partitive case is not indicated:

Osakkeet maksoivat 10 000 € (read: kymmenentuhatta euroa).
The shares cost € 10,000.
Et ole vielä maksanut niitä 10 000:ta (read: kymmentuhatta) euroa, jotka ole minulle velkaa.
You have not yet paid that € 10,000 which you owe me.

If an abbreviation or initialism is read as a word (as opposed to letter by letter), the colon is not used:

Hinta on ERTOn jäsenille 10 €, muille 20 €.
The price is € 10 for the members of ERTO, € 20 for all others.