Using Round Brackets

The Quick Answer
Round brackets ( ) are used to insert additional information.

Round brackets can also be used to show that something could be singular or plural, e.g., Remove the pin(s) from the leg.

When round brackets are used to insert information at the end of a sentence, the end punctuation of the sentence is placed outside the bracket. For example:
  • All the crew survived (even the dog).
When the additional information is a standalone sentence among other sentences, then the whole thing including the end punctuation is placed inside the bracket. For example:
  • All the crew survived. (Even the dog survived.)
In a situation where the additional information is a standalone sentence within another sentence, then the end punctuation is usually omitted for readability. For example:
  • All the crew (The crew was four men and a dog) survived.

Round Brackets for Additional Information

Round brackets are used to insert additional information in text. If you were to remove the brackets and the information inside, the text would still work. For example:
  • Set in the 17th century, The Three Musketeers ("Les Trois Mousquetaires" in French) is a novel by Alexandre Dumas.
  • Although they are relatively common off Australia, California, South Africa and Mexico, great white sharks usually inhabit coastal waters where the water temperature ranges 12-24 degrees Celsius. They generally hunt by detecting the electrical fields (They can detect less than one billionth of a volt) emitted by the movements of their prey.

Round Brackets to Denote Singular or Plural

For brevity, round brackets can be used to show that a word could be either singular or plural. For example:
  • Please write the name(s) of your guest(s) in the section below.
  • Ensure the rod(s) is(are) aligned with the top section.