Grammar |
The Blue Book of Grammar and Punctuation

Category: Clauses and Sentences

Like vs. As, Such As

Posted on Wednesday, June 12, 2024, at 6:00 am

Most of us are likely aware of the give and take of spoken and written language. We give extra license for looseness when speaking; we take that license back to ensure and protect proper form when writing (or at least that should be our aim). Like a thriving rooftop cocktail party at sunset, American English …

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Cumulative Sentence: Definition and Examples

Posted on Wednesday, November 1, 2023, at 6:00 am

Writers focused on pacing, mechanics, and style have many tools at their disposal in English. One such technique is the placement of a main clause at the beginning or end of a sentence. Placing a main (independent) clause at the end of a sentence creates what is referred to grammatically as a periodic sentence. Examples …

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Periodic Sentence: Definition and Examples

Posted on Wednesday, September 13, 2023, at 6:00 am

Many of us will write for different reasons, such as to convey information, enjoy and maintain relationships, or journal our distinctive experience perceiving the people, places, and things that we see. Some of us also write from a desire to explain or create. Beyond applying good grammar, one's writing can develop its own texture and …

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Balanced Sentences: Usage and Examples

Posted on Wednesday, August 9, 2023, at 6:00 am

Expressing ourselves with words is as much nuanced art as it is refined precision and clarity. One can wield superior knowledge of grammar and verbal construction but not always reach readers with compelling rhythm and voice. The same can be said about our arrangements of words when we speak. Consider the following statements: We are …

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Transitional Words and Phrases

Posted on Wednesday, July 26, 2023, at 6:00 am

Each writer's art is the formation of voice and technique over time. The more we write, the more we find and reveal thoughts and words connected only as we might convey them. The more we study and apply the principles for shaping good writing, the more eloquent and precise we can become. Writing differs from …

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What Is a Cleft Sentence?

Posted on Wednesday, June 21, 2023, at 6:00 am

Clear and expressive writing in English will mainly apply the active voice, in which a lead subject performs an action by means of the verb. In developing style and voice, writers will become proficient in facets such as mood and tone and nimble variation as well. At times we also may find ourselves wanting or …

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What Is a Sentence Modifier?

Posted on Wednesday, April 26, 2023, at 6:00 am

A modifier is a word, phrase, or clause used to provide additional information in a sentence. The information is not vital to the sentence's meaning, but it often gives details that offer readers extra clarity. Examples I love when Samantha wears that jacket. Josef waited patiently for two hours. Kathy plans to work as a …

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What Is a Comma Splice?

Posted on Wednesday, April 5, 2023, at 6:00 am

Imagine you are driving down the road in your car. Picture the signs, lights, and symbols you see on the way to help you know where to go at which speed, as well as when to stop and go. Now envision what your route would be like if those indicators were absent or misplaced. Punctuation …

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Elliptical Sentence Constructions

Posted on Wednesday, November 16, 2022, at 6:00 am

Mr. Burns is wiser than I. Tara knows more about football than baseball. Yama's thinking seeks truth; his writing, the expression of it. Many of us are familiar with these types of statements in English. They are elliptical sentence constructions, which omit sentence components without losing clarity. Those components can be words, phrases, or clauses. …

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When to Use (and Not Use) a Comma Before Which

Posted on Wednesday, October 26, 2022, at 6:00 am

Writing and speaking in American English often includes the relative pronouns which and that. We use these words to provide essential and nonessential (also known as restrictive and nonrestrictive) information that further explains or identifies. The distinction between which and that was once more established within daily formal writing. The word which was used for …

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