Posted by: Idioma Extra | February 19, 2010

Thursday’s Tidbit

Names of Symbols

How do we indicate symbols in spoken English? If you’re telling someone an email address (for example, it’s easy, you say: extra at idioma, c, r dot com. So the way we tell someone this symbol @ is we say at.

But, when people are spelling an email address, they sometimes use the name of the symbol and it has quite a few different names; some people call it arroba or commercial at; the at sign and sometimes the at symbol tend to be the most common in American English.

So, if you want to spell our email address, you do it like this: e – x – t – r – a – at sign – i – d – i – o – m – a – c – r – dot – com.

Here are some more useful ones to know:

, comma

‘ apostrophe

” ” quotation marks

& ampersand OR and sign

+ plus sign – minus sign à arrow

© copyright sign

? question mark

# pound symbol

( ) parentheses

( open parenthesis

) close parenthesis or closed parenthesis

_ underscore : colon ; semicolon / forward slash \ backslash

Test Yourself!

Try spelling out the following websites, email addresses and codes. We made up most of these for your practice, so don’t try going to these directions! Good luck!

4.       #4892&_92a?
5.       Research;englishrules©+’

Answers from the Last Tidbit

  1. A: Are you seeing anyone right now?
    B: Yeah, I’ve gone out a few times with my coworker’s best friend, but it’s nothing serious.
  2. People always made fun of Mike and Jan in high school, saying their relationship was just puppy love, but they proved them wrong. They got married after high school, and now have 3 children.
  3. Laura always had trouble meeting guys that she liked, but she really hit it off with Mark. They had a great time together.
  4. Amy has a huge crush on Alejandro Sanz. She has posters of him everywhere in her room.

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