In a sentence ending with a bold or italicised word, does the period need to be bold/italicised too?


Maybe this will be considered a bit of a nitpicking argument, but I constantly find myself asking: In a paragraph where the last word is bold or italicised, should I make the period at the end bold or italicised too.

For example, which of the following is preferrable?

Today I met a lot of interesting people.
Today I met a lot of interesting people.

What would design best practices recommend? Of course at small sizes it’s hard to find a difference, but as size increases it catches the eye more and more and then I’m not sure anymore which one makes for the most appropriate choice.

2/19/2015 9:31:00 PM

Accepted Answer

The older convention was that the style of punctuation matched the immediately preceding context:


That's the Chicago Manual of Style (3rd edition, 1911), but the same convention can be seen in a French equivalent: Désiré Greffier, Les règles de la composition typographique (Paris: A. Muller, 1897), pp. 54-55.

And it's not only an older convention, as the Art. Lebedev Studio continues to advocate this same principle:


Having said that, as noted in other answers, Bringhurst seems to have imposed a different standard -- or at least he is widely cited with the instruction to ignore context and use 'upright' punctuation. His preference gets some interesting discussion, historical context, and push-back in the Typophile forum.

See also these Q&A's from elsewhere in the Stack Exchange network:

4/13/2017 12:38:00 PM

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