1. Use a colon (:) before a list of items or details.

    1. Do not capitalize the first letter of each item in a list when the items are included in a sentence.  Include one space after the colon if what follows is not a complete sentence.  Include two spaces after the colon if what follows is a complete sentence.
      • Gloria’s mom sent her to the store to get these things: a 10-pound bag of potatoes, a gallon of 1% milk, and a dozen eggs.
      • This is what I know:  She picked up the money, deposited it in my bank account, and gave me the receipt.
    2. Capitalize the first letter of each item in a list when the list is in column form.
      • Johnny’s schedule included the following classes:
      1. History
      2. Art
      3. Trigonometry
      4. Drafting
      5. Band
      6. Tennis

  2. Use a colon before an appositive phrase or clause, which is a group of words that defines or identifies another word or group of words.  (Less formally, a dash may be used instead of a colon.)
    • One of the lamps is cyan: a combination of blue light and green light.
    • Gina stated the first portion of the Apostle’s Creed:  I believe in God, the Father Almighty, Creator of heaven and earth.

  3. Use a colon after the salutation of a business letter.
    • Dear Dr. Marcos:   • To whom it may concern:   • Dear Madam:

  4. Use a colon to divide the parts of time, chapters, and scripture references.
    • 5:18 P.M.   • 19:24:36
    • Chapter 6: Part II   • Chapter III: Section C
    • John 3:16   • The Noble Qur’an: Surat 15

  5. Use a colon between the city/state and the publisher in a book reference.
    • Rosenthal, Marvin J. The Pre-wrath Rapture of the Church.  (Nashville, TN: Thomas Nelson, 1990), p. 53.

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