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An interjection is a short exclamation like “Ooooh!” or “Wow!” or “Huh?” You use it when you want to express emotion or attract attention:

  • Hey! Watch where you’re walking!
  • No! I won’t go!
  • Ouch! That hurt!

Sometimes, the interjection is a single word like “Hooray!” Other times, it consists of two or more words like “Good heavens!” or “For crying out loud!”

Interjections can express a variety of feelings from anger to joy and everything in between—disappointment, surprise, shock. 

  • Yippee! It’s the weekend!
  • Boo! Ha ha! I scared you!

Interjections can be found at the beginning or end of a sentence:

  • Darn! I missed the O-train by a minute.
  • We missed the children’s choir, alas.

Often, you need an exclamation point after an interjection, especially if you’re expressing the interjection with strong emotion:

  • No way! She said that!
  • Egad! How did you get that bruise?
  • Hi!

But you can also use a dash:

  • Hey—watch it!

If you’re expressing mild emotion, use a period or a comma:

  • Hello, David.
  • Okay. I’ll do that.
  • Oh, that’s where you are.