Altering Quotes with Brackets
The idea of adding or changing words in a quote might seem counterintuitive. After all, the whole purpose of quoting is to use someone else’s words verbatim. Still, there are times when we need to add or delete words or letters to improve sentence flow or to make a quote grammatically correct in its new home. Of course, as with any alterations to a quote, we must avoid any changes that would twist the quote’s original meaning. We use brackets, [ ], to show how we’ve modified the quote.
Joe Fore, Altering Quotes with Brackets, 71 Virginia Lawyer 54 (October, 2022).