Quotes are words used by anyone other than the original author after being extracted directly from a source. You are quoting a source when you employ its precise sentence and word form. You must copy quotations verbatim from the source whenever you use them in your essay. Depending on the context, quotes are typically indicated with single or double quotation marks. For instance, a single quotation mark is used for a quote within a quote. You must cite the author when quoting to credit the text’s source. Most of the essay must be your insights, so only employ quotations sparingly. It would be best to keep quotes brief and direct to maintain reader interest. The best quotations come from sources whose exact words are tailored to your objectives and support your narrative.
Putting Block Quotes in an Essay
When you identify a quote that you believe would support your position, you should consider how best to incorporate it into your essay. Think of a quote as a small essay—it offers an argument and requires a clear introduction and conclusion. Use a block quotation if you wish to quote more than three lines of poetry or more than four lines of a passage. Block quotations are also used to quote plays.
It would help if you began the block quotation with an original sentence. You must identify the source of the quote and explain its inclusion to your reader.
Formatting a block quote in essays
- Introduce the quotation with a succinct summary that justifies its inclusion to the reader.
- Unless the grammatical link between the sentence before the quote needs special punctuation or none at all, conclude the sentence preceding the quotation with a colon.
- Begin a new line.
- Make a five-space or half-inch indentation from the left margin for the whole quotation.
- Avoid using quotation marks.
- The quotation is double-spaced.
- Follow the last punctuation mark in the quotation with the MLA parenthetical citation.
- Remark the quotation after using it. Block quotes should not be used to conclude sentences. There must always be text after it.
Here is an example of how to put quotes in an essay:
John Pickford concludes the second chapter by outlining his purpose for writing the novel:
This is my opportunity to make sense of the time that followed, the days and then the weeks that shattered every preconceived notion I had ever had about things such as death, disease, the shallowness of sanity, bad and good fortune, luck and probability, relationships, youth, memories, anguish, and how individuals cope with or fail to cope with death. (8)
The second chapter in Pickford’s book demonstrates the importance of embracing new paradigms in life.
Omitting or adding words from quotes
- Use square brackets ([ ]) to indicate the addition of words to a quote.
- Use an ellipsis (…) to indicate where words have been omitted from a quote.
It would be best if you omitted or added words from quotes for clarity, brevity, or grammatical correctness.
Tips for indentation
- Avoid indenting the first line of a block quotation more than the rest if you directly quote a section or the whole paragraph.
- The first line of each paragraph should have a five-space or half-inch indentation if the first sentence of the paragraph in the source corresponds to the quote’s first sentence and you are quoting two or more paragraphs.
- Only apply a five-space or half-inch indentation on the first line of the second paragraph if a quotation contains multiple paragraphs, and the first sentence of a paragraph in the source does not correspond to the quote’s first sentence.
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Quotation is a crucial technique for adding material from outside sources in academic papers. When using quotes, it is also critical to acknowledge the source because your citations give your reader a road map of your research. You must carefully consider the impact of using someone else’s words on developing your argument if you want to use quotes effectively in your essay. Nonetheless, writing a good essay from scratch while incorporating quotes might be difficult because it necessitates proper formatting, research, and justifying the inclusion of the quotations. You might be unable to compose a good essay due to incorrect punctuation or unnecessary use of a quotation. Therefore, you may order essay writing help to fulfill your paper requirements and guarantee quality work. For assistance, you can use the CustomWritings website because it ensures original, non-plagiarized essays. To understand the caliber of work of their writers, the company also lists free essay writing examples with their titles that you may examine. Additionally, the top writers provide students with advice on how to format quotes. Multiple quality checks are performed on the essays, leading to a well-written paper devoid of grammatical errors.
Incorporating poems in your essay using a block quotation
Format the poem the same way you would format an essay unless it has a unique layout or spacing.
- Insert a five-space or half-inch indentation from the left margin.
- Only use quotation marks if they are used in the source.
- If a poem’s line spans more than one line, continue it on the following line but include a five-space or half-inch indentation. The format would be similar to a hanging indent.
- Strive to maintain the formatting exactly as it was in the source when citing more extensive poetry excerpts.
Incorporating plays or dramas in your essay using a block quotation
Guidelines for formatting quotations from plays vary slightly from those for poetry and prose.
Formatting the dialogue in plays:
- Place a five-space or half-inch indentation from the left margin.
- The character’s name should be capitalized, followed by a period, at the beginning of the paragraph.
- Start the quote. If a character expresses something that requires more than one line, include a five-space or half-inch indentation.
- Occasionally, the opening line of dialogue and the character name are separated by extra spaces. Write the dialogue with all the extra spaces, just as it appears in the play.
- Stick to the above format whenever a new character joins the conversation.
- Rather than using the page number in the in-text citation, provide the quotation’s line, scene, and act.
You can easily put block quotes in an essay now that you have learned the technique. However, becoming an expert requires a lot of effort and practice. It would be best if you also remembered how to punctuate quotations appropriately. For instance, you should not put quotes in italics in an essay. Italics should only be included in a quotation if the source was also italicized. Further, you should remember to avoid plagiarism. Never have someone else’s words in your paper without properly citing them and putting them in quotation marks. Failing to put block quotes in an essay is plagiarism or “cheating.” You have committed plagiarism when you use someone else’s words and present them as your own.