1. Hutch
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    Hutch New Member

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    Question mark at the end of a sentence with a demand and a question...

    Discussion in 'Word Mechanics' started by Hutch, Jun 20, 2011.

    Hi all,

    I wonder if anyone can help me. I have a fairly long sentence which appears to start with a demand "Can you please let me know when you intend to schedule this for" and ends with a question "approx how long you think it may take to complete" (although I'm not sure the first part isn't a question as well!). So the whole sentence is "Can you please let me know when you intend to schedule this for and approx how long you think it may take to complete"

    Should this have a question mark at the end?

    Any help appreciated.

    Regards,
    Hutch
     
  2. Suadade
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    Suadade Senior Member

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    The first part is also a question. It should have a question mark at the end. If the first part was a command - as in, "Please let me know when you intend to schedule this for" - I would put a period there and have the question be a sentence on its own, as in:

    "Please let me know when you intend to schedule this for. Also, approximately how long do you think it may take to complete?"
     
  3. Islander
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    Islander Contributing Member Contributor

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    If the sentence starts, "Please let me know..." it's command, not a question, so no question mark.

    If it starts, "Can you please let me know..." it's question, so it should have a question mark. (It asks if the other person can do something.)
     
  4. Hutch
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    Hutch New Member

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    Thank you Suadade and Islander for your prompt replies, but there seems to be a difference in opinion, so I am still unsure.
     
  5. Islander
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    Islander Contributing Member Contributor

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    The sentence as a whole is either a question or a statement (if it's grammatical).

    "Can you please let me know when you intend to schedule this for and approx how long you think it may take to complete"
    is short for
    "Can you please let me know when you intend to schedule this for, and can you please let me know approx how long you think it may take to complete"
    That is, two questions conjoined with an "and".

    On the other hand, "Please let me know when you intend to schedule this for and approx how long you think it may take to complete"
    is short for
    "Please let me know when you intend to schedule this for, and please let me know approx how long you think it may take to complete"
    That is, two commands conjoined with an "and".

    Oh, and suadade and I don't disagree; we both agree the sentence is a question as you've written it.
     
  6. mammamaia
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    mammamaia nit-picker-in-chief Contributor

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    the entire sentence is a question... period...
     

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