Presentation on theme: "Rule 1 : Commas in a compound sentence - Compound sentences are two independent clauses joined by a comma and a coordinating conjunction (FANBOYS). * One."— Presentation transcript:
Rule 1 : Commas in a compound sentence - Compound sentences are two independent clauses joined by a comma and a coordinating conjunction (FANBOYS). * One of the most frequent errors in comma usage is the placement of a comma after a coordinating conjunction. When speaking, we sometimes pause after the conjunction, but there is seldom good reason to put a comma there. Rule 2 : Commas in a series - Use commas to separate three or more words, phrases or clauses in a series. * He ate a sandwich, an apple, and a cup of yogurt. * He hit the ball, dropped the bat, and ran to first base. Rule 3 : Commas with adjectives - Use commas to separate adjectives of equal rank but not adjectives that must stay in a specific order. Hint: if you can put an and or a but between the adjectives without making the sentence sound awkward, a comma probably belongs there. * That tall, distinguished fellow is my father. (You could say “that tall and distinguished fellow” without the sentence sounding awkward. * She is a little old lady. (You would probably NOT say “She is a little and old lady,” so it does not require a comma.)
Rule 4 : Commas after introductory material- Use a comma to set off introductory words, phrases, or clauses. * Running toward third base, he suddenly realized how stupid he looked. If the introductory element has fewer than five words, it is permissible to omit the comma; however, if there is ever any doubt, use the comma, as it is always correct in this situation. Rule 5 : Commas with parenthetical and nonessential expressions – A parenthetical element can be called “added information.” It is not essential to the meaning of the sentence. * Names of people being addressed: Did you know, Tom, that I am a twin? * Certain adverbs: We hoped, however, that the weather would improve. * Common expressions: The outcome, in my opinion, looks bleak. * Contrasting expressions: The scrolls are from China, not Korea. * Nonessential expressions: Jack, a football player, is trying for a scholarship. Alice, now approaching the microphone, will introduce the speaker.
Rule 6 : Commas for typographical reasons- Use a comma between a city and state [Hartford, Connecticut], a date and the year [June 15, 1997], a name and a title when the title comes after the name [Bob Downey, Professor of English], in long numbers [5,456,783 and $14,682], salutations and closings [Dear Aunt Julia, and Your Loving Niece,], etc. Rule 7 : Commas to prevent confusion – This is often a matter of consistently applying rules #4 and 5. * For most the year is already finished. For most, they year is already finished. (Meaning is much clearer.) * Outside the lawn was cluttered with hundreds of broken branches. Outside, the lawn was cluttered with hundreds of broken branches. (Meaning is much clearer.) * Along with Bobby Ray is going to the concert. Along with Bobby, Ray is going to the concert. (Meaning is much clearer.)
Rule 8 : Commas with quoted material- Use a comma to set off quoted material. Use a comma to separate quoted material from the rest of the sentence that explains or introduces the quotation: * Summing up this argument, Peter Coveney writes, “The purpose and strength of the romantic image of the child had been above all to establish a relation between childhood and adult consciousness.” If the designation of the speaker comes in the middle of the quotation, two commas will be required: * “The questions is,” said Alice, “whether you can make words mean so many things.” Be careful NOT to use commas to set off a quoted element introduced by the word that or quoted elements that are embedded within a larger structure: * Peter Coveney writes that “the purpose and strength of….” * We often say “sorry” when we don’t really mean it.