An ellipsis is punctuation that is used to show where words have been left out. The ellipsis is usually formed by three periods (four if the ellipsis comes at the end of a sentence).

The plural of ellipsis is…ellipses. See what we did there? In addition to indicating that words are missing, an ellipsis can say, “wait for it.” There’s a pause. The word ellipsis comes to English via a Greek word, elleipein, meaning to fall short or leave out. If you can’t remember the word ellipsis, you can always say “dot dot dot.”

Definitions of ellipsis

n omission or suppression of parts of words or sentences

Type of:
deletion, omission
any process whereby sounds or words are left out of spoken words or phrases

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