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The SIX Basic Comma Rules
Thanks to a great book:
The LEAST You Should Know
about English
Comma Rule #1
 The Serial…Comma, not Killer…
Place a comma between items in a series
as in the example below.
I have my ...
Comma Rule #2
 The Coordinating Conjunction Comma...
Place a comma before a coordinating
conjunction that joins two indep...
Comma Rule #3
 The Introductory Word or Phrase
comma…
Always place a comma after an
introductory word or phrase. See belo...
Comma Rule #4
 The Interrupting Word/Phrase Comma…
Always place a comma before and after
any word or phrase that can be r...
Comma Rule #5
 The Concluding Word/Phrase Comma…
Always place a comma before any word or
phrase that is just tagged on at...
Comma Rule #6
 The Catch-all Comma…use it…
to separate numbers more than four digits
long (1,000,000),
to separate city f...
Here’s the book…
Brought to you by
Tim McGinn
&
The NWACC
Writing Center
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Wk 14 the six basic comma rules

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Wk 14 the six basic comma rules

  1. 1. The SIX Basic Comma Rules Thanks to a great book: The LEAST You Should Know about English
  2. 2. Comma Rule #1  The Serial…Comma, not Killer… Place a comma between items in a series as in the example below. I have my laptop, my pens, my pencils, and my MP3 Player in my backpack.
  3. 3. Comma Rule #2  The Coordinating Conjunction Comma... Place a comma before a coordinating conjunction that joins two independent clauses. The coordinating conjunctions are: and, but, for, nor, or, so, and yet. For Example: The best place to take a vacation is Chicago, but the best place to take a honeymoon is Hawaii.
  4. 4. Comma Rule #3  The Introductory Word or Phrase comma… Always place a comma after an introductory word or phrase. See below. John, what are you doing to my car? OR As I walked down the street, I ran into a friend I hadn’t seen in years.
  5. 5. Comma Rule #4  The Interrupting Word/Phrase Comma… Always place a comma before and after any word or phrase that can be removed from the sentence and still make sense. For Example: John, the teacher, wrote his name on the board. OR I ran down the street, though I didn’t have to, and fell down and hurt my crown.
  6. 6. Comma Rule #5  The Concluding Word/Phrase Comma… Always place a comma before any word or phrase that is just tagged on at the end of the sentence. See below. Is that you in the corner, John? OR I hadn’t seen John in years, though that didn’t make much difference in our friendship.
  7. 7. Comma Rule #6  The Catch-all Comma…use it… to separate numbers more than four digits long (1,000,000), to separate city from state, (Paris, Texas), to separate month & year (August 15, 1980), before and after titles (James Smith, M.D., is no longer working here.), or to prevent confusion (To err is human; to forgive, divine.)
  8. 8. Here’s the book…
  9. 9. Brought to you by Tim McGinn & The NWACC Writing Center

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