This article is a list of standard proofreader's marks used to indicate and correct problems in a text. Marks come in two varieties, abbreviations and abstract symbols. These are usually handwritten on the paper containing the text. Symbols are interleaved in the text, while abbreviations may be placed in a margin with an arrow pointing to the problematic text. Different languages use different proofreading marks and sometimes publishers have their own in-house proofreading marks.
|sp||Spelling||Used to indicate misspelling|
|spo||Spell out||Used to indicate that an abbreviation should be spelled out, such as in its first use|
|stet||Let it stand||Indicates that proofreading marks should be ignored and the copy unchanged|
|fl||Flush left||Align text flush with left margin|
|fr||Flush right||Align text flush with right margin|
|eq #||Equalize spacing|
|ital||Italics||Put in italics|
|rom||Roman||Put in Roman (non-italic) font|
|bf||Boldface||Put in boldface|
|lc||Lower case||Put text in lower case|
|caps||Capitalize||Put text in capital case|
|sc||Small caps||Put text in small caps|
|wf||Wrong font||Put text in correct font|
|wc/ww||word choice/wrong word||Incorrect or awkward word choice|
|hr #||Insert hair space|
|s/b||should be||Selection should be whatever edit follows this mark|
|s/r||substitute/replace||Make the substitution|
|tr||transpose||Transpose the two words selected|
|Symbol Name||Symbol(s)||Meaning||Example of Use|
|Pilcrow (Unicode U+00B6)||¶||Begin new paragraph|
|Pilcrow (Unicode U+00B6)||¶ no||Remove paragraph break|
|Caret[b] (Unicode U+2038, 2041, 2380)||‸ ⁁ ⎀||Insert|
|Close up (Unicode U+2050)||⁐||Tie words together, eliminating a space||I was reading the news⁐paper this morning.|
|] [||Center text|
|]||Move text right|
|[||Move text left|
|M̲||Insert em dash|
|N̲||Insert en dash|
- single dashed underline for stet, 'let it stand', proof-reading mark cancelled.
- single straight underline for italic type
- single wavy underline for bold type
- double straight underline for SMALL CAPS
- double underline of one straight line and one wavy line for bold italic
- triple underline for FULL CAPITAL LETTERS (used among small caps or to change text already typed as lower case).
- ISO 5776 – Standard symbols for proofreading
- Blue pencil (editing) – Pencil used to show corrections to written copies
- For more details, see Eduardo Marín Silva (4 October 2021). "Proposal for the inclusion of the DELETE SIGN for proofreading and discussion of the intended use and behavior of already encoded signs" (PDF). Unicode Consortium.
- The circumflex character and latin letter are sometimes shown but these are not correct.
- "Proof Correction Marks" (PDF). British Standards Institution. Archived from the original (PDF) on 15 December 2017. Retrieved 13 May 2016.
- "Proofreading Marks Chart – Some of the Most Common Proofreading Marks". graphic-design-employment.com. Retrieved 9 October 2020.
- Writers' & Artists' Yearbook 2020. Bloomsbury. 5 September 2019. ISBN 9781472947512.
- The Chicago Manual of Style Online: Proofreading
- Merriam-Webster: Proofreader's Marks
- British Standards Institution BS 5261C:2005 – Hardcopy for purchase
- "PROOFMARKS - How to communicate your text changes without ambiguity" (PDF). Lancing Press. April 2014. (Online summary of BS5261, open access via "Proofmarks")
- The style guide for publications of the European Union is presented in 24 European languages and includes a section on proofreading. Each edition has a sheet of proofreader's marks that appears to be the same apart from the language used to describe the marks. The section cautions that "it should be realised that the typesetter may not understand the language in which the text is written".
- "6. Typographic instructions and revision of the text". Interinstitutional style guide. Publications Office of the European Union.
- "6.3. Proof-correction marks". Interinstitutional style guide.