Brackets ( ), sometimes called round brackets or parentheses, have several uses.

They add a small amount of additional information to help the reader understand something:

  • A dinner of pho (a Vietnamese dish) will be served at 7pm.
  • This year’s sales figures (see attachment) are a big improvement on last year.

They show plural options:

  • All guest(s) must leave before 11pm.
  • Please leave your phone(s) at reception.

They show new abbreviations:

  • This will be voted upon by the International Olympic Committee (IOC) in June. The IOC will then publish the results.