Words that rely on hyphens for clarity

Although the author has declared it the most tiresome punctuation mark, there are times its use is necessary to convey the proper meaning. Here are some examples.

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As the “AMA Manual of Style” says, “The hyphen is a connector; it may join what is similar and also what is disjunctive . . . it divides as well as marries.”

There are rules for when to use a hyphen and when not to use a hyphen, and style manuals have different guidelines from one another. Then there are the exceptions to the guidelines. Finally, when it comes to hyphens, all style guides include the catch-all phrase: “When in doubt, consult a dictionary.”

In this week’s post, we are going to discuss a very clear-cut hyphenation rule: hyphens within a word. Because meaning matters, some words are hyphenated to distinguish them from other words. What follows are words that need hyphens in order to keep their meanings clear.

That chair looks like it belongs in a funeral home. Let’s re-cover it before we put it in the reception area.
Has IT been able to recover any of the content that was lost when the CMS crashed?

The “new” navigation for the website is just a re-creation of the old navigation.
Last year’s company picnic was more stress creation than recreation.

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