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September 2021

The Scrivener

For Want of a Comma: Oxford Commas

By Elizabeth Scott Moïse

SC Lawyer

"Who gives a [hoot] about an Oxford comma?”
-Oxford Comma, Vampire Weekend (lyrics by Ezra Koenig) (XL Recordings 2008)

This column will be short and sweet, and it will be about a comma. It deserves its own column because, outside of deciding whether to put one or two spaces after the end of a sentence, use of Oxford commas (also known as serial commas) has caused more heated arguments between lawyers than almost any other writing issue in my lifetime. 

Reprinted with permission.