Love it or hate it, the exclamation mark has been with us from Beowulf to the spam email - an enthusiastic history for language lovers! Few punctuation marks elicit quite as much love or hate as the exclamation mark. It´s bubbly and exuberant, an emotional amplifier whose flamboyantly dramatic gesture lets the reader know: here be feelings! Scott Fitzgerald famously stated exclamation marks are like laughing at your own joke; Terry Pratchett had a character say that multiple !!! are a ´sure sign of a diseased mind´. So what´s the deal with ! ? An Admirable Point recuperates the exclamation mark from its much maligned place at the bottom of the punctuation hierarchy. It explores how ! came about in the first place some six hundred years ago, and uncovers the many ways in which ! has left its mark on art, literature, (pop) culture, and just about any sphere of human activity - from Beowulf to spam emails, ee cummings to neuroscience. Whether you think it´s over-used, or enthusiastically sprinkle your writing with it, ! is inescapable.