Tuesday, December 16, 2014

A Quick 5 Point Novel Guide to Using i.e. and e.g.

We all use i.e. and e.g. but do we use them correctly. I received a report at work the other day and in seven references to i.e. or e.g. five times they were used incorrectly--I think the other two were luck. 

So, here I present the fool proof 5 point novel guide to e.g and i.e.

1. Latin

They are Latin but you no longer need to italicize them. We stopped doing that ages ago.

2. End a sentence

You will never have to end a sentence with either, except I just did, but as a rule, if you do end a sentence with an abbreviation, that period will suffice.

3. e.g. means for example

‘Egg’ is an easy way to remember what e.g. stands for and here is an e(gg)xample: I like playing sport, e.g. Football and cricket. I used e.g., so, you know that I have provided a list of examples of games that I like. It's not a finite list of all games I like; it's just a few examples.

4. i.e. means in other words

I like playing sport i.e. Football and cricket. I used i.e., which introduces a clarification, so, you know that these are the only games that I enjoy. 

5. etc.

Never use etc. with either e.g. or i.e. You don’t use it with e.g. because it is redundant, we know there are more because you are using e.g. You don’t use with i.e. because there is no etc., i.e. represents a full list.