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Accent Marks (Diacritics) 

Non-English Words, Phrases, and Accent Marks

Brenda Gregoline

An accent mark (diacritic), when added to a letter, indicates a phonetic value different from that of the unmarked letter. English words once spelled with accent marks (eg, cooperate, preeminent) now are written and printed without them. Consult the most recent edition of Merriam-Webster’s Collegiate Dictionary to resolve questions about whether a word should retain its accent. In general, English words in common usage should be spelled without diacritical marks. Accent marks should always be retained in the following instances: ▪ Proper names Dr Bönneman is a Pew Scholar in the Biomedical Sciences. ▪ When it is desirable to show

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