BRL: Braille through Remote Learning

Intro to Braille Course

Session 6 page
Session Objectives

Session Topics
  • Whole-word Contractions
  • Whole-word Initial Letter
  • Whole-word Lower Cell
  • Whole-word Initial Letter
  • Whole-word Lower Cell

  • Writing Exercise
  • Reading Exercise

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  • Summary of Rules
  • Contractions Lookup
  • Contractions List
  • Braille only contractions
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  • Webster's Dictionary
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  • Reading List

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  • Session 6: Whole-word lower sign contractions

    There are nine whole-word lower-sign contractions to be studied in this reading:


    There are two distinct groups of contractions here: the first six (his, was, were, be, in, and enough) and the last three (to, into, and by). They both have some similarities but also some differences, and we'll explore both in this session.

    Whole-word his, was, were, be, in, and enough

    The rules for these contractions are fairly simple: they may never be in contact with any letter, word, contraction, or punctuation mark (Rule 7A in the Summary of Rules). These contractions, may, however, be used in contact with composition signs, such as capital and italics signs.

    If you notice that these contractions are the same dots as many punctuation marks, perhaps that will help you to understand why they cannot be used in contact with cells other than composition signs.

    These words cannot be used in hyphenated words, such as "bride-to-be", except if the word "be" begins a new line (supposing that there was not room for it on the previous line):


    These contractions may be used in succession if there is a space between them, such as in the sentence "The man carried the child in his arms.":


    Whole-word to, into, and by

    These three contractions follow this rule: whenever one of these contractions is used, no space should be left between them and the word, composition sign, or symbol which follows. They should not be used in front of a punctuation sign. If there is not room at the end of the line for the contraction and the word following it, then the contraction should be spelled out.

    One of the trickier rules is the rule that states: "when two or more unspaced lower-sign contractions would follow one another and not be in contact with an upper sign, the last lower-sign contraction must not be used." (Rule 8A). For example, in the sentence:

    He went (by)in a hurry (to)get (to)(the) bus.

    In this sentence, you should notice the spacing with the contractions "by" and "to". We cannot use the lower-sign contraction "in" since it would be in direct contact with the lower-sign contraction "by". However, we can use it in the sentence below:

    He went (by)(to)get a book.

    since the two contractions "by" and "to" are in contact with the upper sign letter "g" in "get".

    The final rule is that these three contractions should not be used in hyphenated words, such as "well-to-do" or "by-product". They are never used as part-word contractions, so this will be the only place you see these three contractions discussed!

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