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Re: [groff] 04/04: tmac: Move macro diagnostics away from `quotes'.

From: G. Branden Robinson
Subject: Re: [groff] 04/04: tmac: Move macro diagnostics away from `quotes'.
Date: Sun, 19 Nov 2017 23:35:18 -0500
User-agent: NeoMutt/20170113 (1.7.2)

At 2017-11-19T11:47:53-0500, Peter Schaffter wrote:
> On Sat, Nov 18, 2017, G. Branden Robinson wrote:
> > As an American acutely aware of orthographic differences in U.S.
> > and British usage, I must protest.  U.S. quotation practice is
> > for the innermost set of quotation marks to be double quotes
> > (directional where available).  The practice of using single
> > quotes for the innermost set of quotation marks is a British
> > convention.  Nevertheless...
> Erm... as a Canadian, I'm wondering if "inner" and "outer" reverse
> meanings as they cross the 49th parallel because it looks as if
> you've stated the situation backwards.  In North American usage,
> double-quotes go on the outside, singles on the inside.

You're absolutely right!  I think I had a moment of delirium when
writing my response to Steffan.

It's not a matter of nesting level, since humans tend to be LR(1)
parsers[1], so the rule is simpler.  In North America the first
quotation mark you hit is supposed to be double, and if that's not
closed before you hit another, the next should be single, and so on,
alternating until the stack pops.

The U.K. convention is the opposite, but I'm less sure of other
Commonwealth countries.

>   North American:
>   John continued his story.  "And then Marion said, 'Go to hell.'"
>   British:
>   John continued his story.  'And then Marion said, "Go to hell."'

Yup.  That's what I'm used to seeing.

On a more whimsical note:

Are you familiar with the U.K. practice[3] that says an abbreviation
doesn't get a period if the abbreviation ends with the final letter of
the abbreviated word?  So we see "Mr Smith" and "Dr Jones".  This
appears to have started as a somewhat lowbrow press convention (think of
the Sun) that has slowly spread in popularity.  Personally, I think it's

[1] Okay, except for Arabic, Hebrew, Farsi, ...[2]
[2] And except for some ancient Greeks who read in boustrophedon...
[3] en_GB: practise


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