Hyphen Rules

Define Hyphen
  • A symbol represented by: -
  • Used to link two closely related words or word parts
  • Used to indicate a missing or implied element
  • Used to divide words into syllables
Rule 1
  • Combines two closely related words or word parts
    • example:  spot-check
    • example:  pre-check
    • example:  good-looking
  • Using a hyphen indicates that the words have a combined meaning
    • example:  mother-in-law
Rule 2
  • Shows that there's a missing or implied word
    • example:  Which parking pass did you get, short- or long-term?
Rule 3
  • Shows the syllable divisions in a word
    • example:  The syllable division for beautiful is: beau-ti-ful.

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Fun Fact
CHECKBOOK is the longest
horizontally symmetrical word.


  • My mother-in-law is here.
  • My father-in-law's name is Jack.
  • He asked me to spot-check his work.
  • She is very good-looking.
  • beau-ti-ful
  • syl-la-ble
  • learn-ing
  • read-ing
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