Vivian Cook  Writing System Home

General Punctuation Test

Click PRINT to print out these 5 texts. Then restore the punctuation marks. Word spaces have not been deleted. Capital letters have been retained for proper names etc. 

a) Newspaper Text

Dutch tourist found alive after 18 days trapped in hole in Spain

Civil Guard spokesperson Hector Ortega said that a group of mountaineers had found Mary Anne Goossens 48 years old caught among boulders close to the source of the Chillar River outside the resort town of Nerja early Wednesday

the mountaineers were unable to rescue Goossens but left her food and clothing before alerting regional emergency services she was reported to be weak but uninjured Ortega said police mountain rescue teams had been dispatched to the area to find her he said Goossens had some food when she set out walking water from a nearby spring also helped her survive he added

b) Cookbook Recipe

sift the flour and salt into a large mixing bowl holding the sieve up as high as possible to give the flour an airing then cut the fat into small cubes and add them to the flour now using your fingertips lightly and gently rub the pieces of fat into the flour lifting your hands up high as you do this again to incorporate as much air as you can and being as quick as possible

when the mixture looks uniformly crumbly start to sprinkle roughly 2 tablespoons of water all over use a round bladed knife to start the mixing cutting and bringing the mixture together carefully add more water as needs a little at a time then finally bring the mixture together with your hands to form a smooth ball of dough that will leave the bowl clean

c) Literary Novel

before the body there is the face and before the face there is the thin black line between Hectors nose and upper lip a twitching filament of anxieties a metaphysical jump rope a dancing thread of discombobulation the mustache is a seismograph of Hectors inner states and not only does it make you laugh it tells you what Hector is thinking, actually allows you into the machinery of his thoughts other elements are involved the eyes the mouth the finely calibrated lurches and stumbles but the mustache is the instrument of communication and even though it speaks a language without words its wriggle and flutters are as clear and comprehensible as a message tapped out in morse code

d) Application Letter

Dear Sir Madam

re job as a part time spy (reference hyf3417)

I would like to apply for the job of a part time spy in MI5 as advertised in The Times on 3rd September my CV is attached

my previous jobs include two years as an undercover agent in a tattoo shop in Brighton this has given me experience of finding out secrets as well as marksman skills and a basic knowledge of codes

I would welcome the chance to discuss the job with you on the telephone or at an interview I can be contacted most easily on my mobile telephone or through my usual drop behind the first bench on the left in St Jamess park

yours faithfully

e) Thriller

Pauling adjusted the position of her right arm brought her hand south and chopped the air a fraction to the left of the cafés most northerly table that cut the view to just a slim section of the streetscape half of the building with the flower store in it and most of the building with the café in it above the flower store were three storeys of windows with vertical blinds behind them and printers and spider plants and stacks of paper on their sills fluorescent tubes on the ceilings

office suites Pauling said

above the café were three storeys of windows filled variously with faded drapes made of red Indian cloth or macramé hangings or suspended discs of stained glass


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