How to Embed Quotations in to Your Written Essay?

When you write an essay or literary answer you sometimes have to prove your arguments or points referring to the prescribed text. Here, you can use longer quotations, word or phrase quotations. In this post we will be guiding you through the way to use phrase or single word quotations inside your written answer. We have provided some examples of how to write embedded quotations at the end of the post for your easy understanding. Though usual quotations are written separately, the phrase or one word quotations are used inside the written passage. 

What is an embedding quotation then? Embedding quotation means using bits and pieces of a longer quote within the sentence of an answer. These type of quotes do not need a description as the quote is used with a specific purpose and meaning. Usually, a single quotation mark is used to denote that this is a quoted text, using double quotation mark is also accepted.

Ex: Popova calls Smirnov ‘a monster’ at the climax.


Tips to use embedded quote

  • Use the quote as a part of the sentence.
  • Always use less number of words, you can even use a single word as a quotation.
  • Always choose a quote which helps to prove your argument.
  • Decide the most important segment of the quotation.
  • If you have edited something in the quote, use [boxed brackets] to show that.


Examples of Embedding quotations

Let’s see how to use embedded quotations in real examples taken from different genres.

01. Lumber room by Saki

Older and wiser and better people - Nicholas used his creativity to overpower the ‘older and wiser and better people.’

Evil one – The use of ‘Evil one’ to punish aunt shows that Nicholas is a very creative person.

Strawberry jam – Nicholas uses ‘strawberry jam’ as a bait to deceive the aunt.


02. The Nightingale and the Rose by Oscar Wild

Yet, love is better than life – Nightingale sacrificed her dear life on behalf of the young student as she believed ‘love is better than life.’

Metaphysics – ‘Metaphysics’ is a way to the young student to flee away from his reality.

Chamberlain’s nephew – The professor’s daughter’s hypocritical nature is revealed by her attitudes towards ‘Chamberlain’s nephew.’


03. Let’s see how to form a paragraph for a given question at the exam. Consider following question.

“Sonali Deraniyagala Effectively depicts the authentic response of a victim facing a grave, terrible natural disaster” Prove this point with reference to ‘Wave.’

[Answer Paragraph] When the waves ‘charging [and] churning’ Sonali’s motherly instincts gets startled forcing her to leave the hotel soon. Though she ‘didn’t know what [she] was fleeing from’, she acts spontaneously. This is an evident, authentic response of a person when facing a natural disaster.


04. Let see a complete analysis written by Sadali Himansa on Farewell to Barn and Stack and Tree by H.E. Housman

The visual image presented in the title of the poem create a vivid picture of a rural pastoral countryside which has not been shadowed by industrialization. The 1st four lines show - quite unusually the speaker takes leave from the familiar objects in his immediate environment. It is obvious that he is worried over something which compels him to leave the village.

The next four lines creates a horrendous picture of a man soaked in blood lying dead among the piles of hay. As hinted by these lines it is obvious that the speaker is responsible for the murder ‘And [his] knife is in his side.’ Examining this line, it is obvious that since he has left the knife we can conclude that the murder was not planned and intentional. If it had been a planned murder the speaker would have definitely removed the knife from the scene.

In the third stanza, it is clear that the speaker is sensible enough to understand that his mother is awaiting their arrival and it is also clear that they had been living a harmonious life and “she had two sons at rising day.” As further hinted by this line, it is clears that the speaker and the Maurice who has been killed by the speaker are brothers. However, the speaker is sensible enough to think of his mother and the troubles she had to face in their absence.

In fourth stanza, speaker is referring to his hands as ‘bloody’ as he condemns what he has done. He repents over what he has done. It is obvious that the speaker likes to get himself involved in the farming activities but he cannot do as his conscience forces him to leave the village. He treats his hands and himself as two entities as ‘my bloody hands and I’ to suggest that it is not he who committed murder but his impulsive anger. He is trying to hint that he has committed the murder in impulsive anger.

As hinted in the fifth stanza, it is clear that the murder has taken place as a result of an unfaithful love affair. He wishes his friend to be blessed with a ‘clean’ love which hints that he has been battered by an unfaithful love affair.

In the last stanza, speaker is saying about his future which is already doomed. In their absence, there will be no farming, harvesting will be neglected, fields would go barren. Since no more farming is done, there will be nothing for them to eat. They are sure to face several financial problems as their absence would make the main source of income go in drain. Although he dreams of the warmth of the family, it will never be a reality. There will be no more family gatherings. The life ahead of him will be really tough and hard. 

This is an answer of a grade 10 student and there could have been more embedding to be done. However, her analysis is a good example to show that it is possible to write analysis without separate and longer quotations. It will be a great relief for the students who are worried about by-hearting longer quotations. If you want to see how to use longer quotations in a written literary essay, you can read How to use quotations in a literary answer here.

What are your experiences with regard to the use of embedded quotations? Share your valuable ideas as a comment. Share the post if you find it useful to others.




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