Although the study of punctuation is part of orthography in terms of the tradition in Hungary, its place and presitge is quite different in other countries of Europe. In the English, German, French, Russian, etc. traditions, punctuation constitutes a chapter of grammar. However, the study of punctuation is also closely related, in addition to grammar, to other linguistic disciplines such as suprasegmental phonetics, stylistics, textology, semantics, psycholinguistics, etc. Furthermore, it is not only intertwined with those numerous branches of linguistics but is also part and parcel of cultural history. The talk surveys all those interdiciplinary aspects of the study of punctuation, albeit making no claim for completeness, and supports its statements by examples. Finally, the author argues that the study of punctuation marks is important as it facilitates the correct and accurate interpretation of texts, and advances the localization early written documents in place and time, the exploration of their sources, and sometimes even the identification of their authors or copiers.
Financed by the National Centre for Research and Development under grant No. SP/I/1/77065/10 by the strategic scientific research and experimental development program:
SYNAT - “Interdisciplinary System for Interactive Scientific and Scientific-Technical Information”.