Clause and Punctuation Summary
1. End an independent clause with a period.
What is an independent clause?
It can take several forms:
Subject Verb [S-V]
The sun rises.
Subject Verb Object [S-V-O]
The parrot whistled a strange tune. Subject Linking Verb Predicate Noun [S-LV-PN] The boy is a hero. Subject Linking Verb Adjective [S-LV-A] The girl is heroic.
A Partial List of LinkingVerbs:
is have been seem smell am had been appear sound are will be look remain was become feel prove were grow taste
2. Join two independent clauses with a semi-colon.
independent clause ; independent clause
3. Or join two independent clauses with a semi-colon and a conjunctive adverb + a comma.
independent clause; conjunctive adv, independent clause
Partial List of Conjunctive Adverbs:
|accordingly||for example||in addition||nevertheless||thereafter|
|afterward||for instance||in fact||notwithstanding||therefore|
|afterwards||for one thing||in general||obviously||thereupon|
|all in all||fourth||in other words||of course||third|
|also||furthermore||in particular||on the whole||thus|
|as a matter of fact||granted||in short||otherwise||to be sure|
|clearly then||hence||in summary||second||to make matters worse|
4. Or join two independent clauses with a comma and a conjunction.
independent clause, conjunction independent clause
5. Join a dependent clause and an independent clause with a comma
dependent clause, independent clause
Partial List of Subordinating Conjunctions (Words Beginning Dependent Clause)
|after||as though||if||now||so much as||until||whereas||whoever|
|although||because||if ever||now that||so near as||what||wherever||whom|
|as||before||if only||once||so that||whatever||whether||whomever|
|as close as||but that||in case||provided||such that||what if||whether ... or||whose|
|as if||but what||in order that||provided that||than||whatsoever||which||whosoever|
|as long as||except||in which||since||that||when||whichever||why|
|as often as||except that||lest||so far as||though||whenever||while|
|as soon as||how||like||so long as||unless||where||who|
6. Join an independent clause and a dependent clause with a subordinating conjunction and no punctuation.
independent clause (subordinating conjunction) dependent clause
7. Interrupt an independent clause with a comma and a parenthetical addition.
independent, parenthetical element, clause
Partial List of Parenthetical Elements:
|of course||I believe||on the other hand||however||therefore|
|by the way|
8. Follow an independent clause introducing a series with a colon.
independent clause : A, B, and C.
Practices to Avoid
DO NOT JOIN TWO INDEPENDENT CLAUSES WITH JUST A COMMA.
independent clause, independent clause = comma splice
DO NOT JOIN TWO INDEPENDENT CLAUSES WITH NO PUNCTUATION.
independent clause independent clause = fused sentence