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The Blue Book of Grammar and Punctuation

Category: Commas

Commas in Lists

Posted on Wednesday, March 23, 2022, at 6:00 am

American English is rife with details concerning written style. One common item concerns how to punctuate lists and particularly whether to include commas in them. In this review, we'll consider ways you can approach presenting content in lists. Our focus will be on lists in a vertical format as opposed to in sentence form (e.g., …

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What Are Correlative Conjunctions?

Posted on Wednesday, February 23, 2022, at 6:00 am

A conjunction is a part of speech that connects words, phrases, or clauses. The two types of conjunctions are coordinating conjunctions and subordinating conjunctions. Correlative conjunctions are coordinating conjunctions used in pairs. They connect two items of equal rank and grammatical unit. Some common correlative conjunctions include: either…or neither…nor both…and not only…but also as…so rather…than …

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Should You Use a Comma After Hello?

Posted on Monday, January 24, 2022, at 6:00 am

Suppose you’re writing an email or a letter. Should you use a comma after the word Hello, or is another treatment more fitting? We’ll help you arrive at the answer. Why or Why Not to Use a Comma After Hello Confusion can surround this matter of style, and guiding answers might not always be clear. …

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Run-On Sentences

Posted on Wednesday, January 19, 2022, at 6:00 am

Many of us have seen a run-on sentence or what we thought might be one. Even if we couldn't explain technically why it was a run-on, we intuited that such a sentence included elements that were either improperly joined or insufficiently separated. In this discussion, we'll further review run-on sentences as well as different ways …

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Coordinating Conjunctions

Posted on Wednesday, December 8, 2021, at 6:00 am

A coordinating conjunction is a word that connects other words or phrases as well as clauses of equal rank. The seven coordinating conjunctions are for, and, nor, but, or, yet, and so. (One way to remember them is by using the acronym FANBOYS as a mnemonic device: For And Nor But Or Yet So.) We …

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What Is a Compound Sentence?

Posted on Monday, November 29, 2021, at 6:00 am

You might vaguely recall learning about compound sentences at some point earlier in your education. There's also a chance a refresher may help, because review and practice are good for remembering grammatical guidelines. In this post we'll revisit what a compound sentence is and how it is formed. How Do We Create a Compound Sentence? …

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Do You Need Commas Before Conjunctions?

Posted on Friday, September 17, 2021, at 6:00 am

A common debate in English grammar can concern whether commas need to be used before conjunctions such as and, or, and but. These debates may stem from the fact that different people have been taught different guidelines about this punctuation. Style guides often differ about it as well. Today's post will help to clear things …

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The Oxford Comma

Posted on Monday, August 9, 2021, at 6:00 am

Writers and editors tend to have strong opinions about the Oxford comma. If you don’t regularly work with words and grammar, however, you might not even be aware of what the Oxford comma is although you might be using it (or not) in your writing. Let’s break down what you need to know about the …

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i.e. vs. e.g.: How to Use i.e. or e.g.

Posted on Wednesday, March 31, 2021, at 6:00 am

We've probably all either seen or written the abbreviations i.e. and e.g. Some of us may have understood them, and some of us may have not been sure. For example, perhaps we've come across a statement such as: Please bring something to the potluck dinner (i.e., salad, appetizer, dessert). The context of that statement doesn't …

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To Restrict or Not to Restrict: That Is the Question

Posted on Tuesday, July 7, 2020, at 11:00 pm

Who, that, or which; restrictive or nonrestrictive: Most of us have at some point had to grapple with interpretation, pronoun choice, and punctuation for a statement containing essential or nonessential information. For example, what would be succinct within the following statements? Jayla always orders the surf and turf that the master chef prepares for her. …

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