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Line of confusion: -ly words and hyphens

Among the 1467381_10152803873365216_1473615927895567404_nmany confused punctuation rules is whether or not to use a hyphen with a word ending in ly.

The basic rule is that adverbs ending in ly are not hyphenated. So, you would write finely tuned guitar not finely-tuned guitar, because finely is an adverb modifying how the guitar is tuned.

Generally, words ending in ly are adverbs, so this rule is almost universal.

The few words ending in ly that are not adverbs, such as family (which is a noun), require a hyphen, however. So, you would write family-owned business not family owned business.

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