is/are= -, – or —?
I have a quick question: which character do you use to represent the verb ‘to be’ in the present tense (is/are): the short hyphen -, the medium en dash – or the very long em dash —?
I know the character can be omitted when ‘to be’ is not stressed and I know that the character is not used with pronouns but, still, I want to know how to write it properly. Personally, I think the long em dash is the
Example: ‘Alexader is my brother’ = «Александр — это мой брат» or «Александр — мой брат»
Em dashes are definitely more popular, but I believe en dash is possible, too. The Wikipedia article you've linked states:
Длина русского тире правилами пунктуации и типографики не оговаривается: неявно предполагается, что существует единственный знак тире, а длина его определяется шрифтом
'The length of the Russian dash is not specified by the punctuation or typographic rules: it's implicitly assumed that only one dash symbol exists, and its size is determined by the font'
If I'm not mistaken, Microsoft Word automatically replaces - with en dashes (–).
Yes, that sound reasonable but does not take into account when writing in something that is not a text editor with different fonts. So, when writing on the Internet, e.g. in a forum on Duolingo, the em dash is the most popular is the em dash. — Got it! Спасибо за помощь!
In Russian there are two dashes, one is "дефис" (hyphen), the other is "тире" (dash). Дефис is used for hyphenation and for two- (or more) parts words (i.e. "чёрно-белый"). Тире is used in a number of cases, it is not as long as English m-dash (n-dash is Ok), and there is always some space (shorter than regular space between words) between тире and words that it separates.