Punctuation Karen WrightAn Important Piece of the Puzzle
How Do You Use the Comma? The comma is the most abused form of punctuation. When in doubt, leave out. 1. Use commas to separate words, phrases, and clauses when there are three or more in a series. Matilda can run, jump, and skip. Clue: Can the word AND be substituted for the comma? Then use the comma. 2. Use a comma to separate independent clause (sentences) in a compound sentence. I like English, BUT it is difficult.
3. Use Comma to set off nouns of direct address. Gertrude, I want you to know that Matilda like George.4. Use a noun to set off a word or phrase thatexplains a preceding word. Please ask your teacher, Mr. Crab, about commas. 5. Use a comma to set off a year when it is with a month and date. Julius was born June 25, 1954, in Canton, Illinois.
6. When the date identifiesthe day of the week, the dateis set off with a comma. On Thursday, August 25, school resumes.7. Use a commas to set offthe state when it identifies acity. I live in Chicago, Illinois, the home of the Cubs.
Commas8. Use commas whenwriting full addresses insentence form.I live at 2345 WestchesterBlvd., Springfield, IL 62703Do not use a comma between state and zip code.9. Use commas to set off introductory phrasesthat come at the beginning of a sentence. Feeling anxious, George slowly stepped on the stage.
10. Use a comma after a long prepositional phrase or two short prepositional phases. On the seventh day of creation, God rested.11. Use commas to set off nonrestrictive relativeclauses (not necessary to the meaning of thesentence) from the rest of the sentence. Who Whose) Restrictive/nonrestrictive Whom Which) Nonrestrictive (needs a comma) That man, who is standingis needed) is my son. That) Restive (no comma by the door,
12. Use commas to set of parenthetical expressions. Jason is handsome, however, looks can be deceiving.13. Use commas to set off words such as yes, no,well, when they are used independently. Yes, it is a hot summer.14. Use a comma to set off short quotedsentences from the rest of the sentence. Hamlet said, “To be or not to be. That is the question.”
Commas15. Use a comma to set off contrasting expressions. School is in session during the week, seldom on Saturday and Sunday. 16. Use a comma to prevent misreading. Just a month before, Bill accepted the promotion.
The semi-colon has a greater degree of separation thanthe comma, but less than a period. A reader pausesmore than he/she would for a comma and less thanhe/she would for a period, thus we have ( ; ). 1. Use a semi-colon to separate independent clause (sentences) is a compound sentence that are closed conned in thought and not joined by a conjunction. After class, I went to the Pizza Hut; then I graded papers for an hour.
2. Use a semi-colon to separate independent clause if there are commas within the parts. I wrote to George, Matilda, and Gertrude; and Ellen notified Jason by phone.3. Use a semi-colon after an introduction that precededan explanation or an enumeration. namely for instance that is for example Juan enjoys teaching English; namely he enjoys literature and composition.
4. Use a semi-colon to separate the independent clausesof a compound sentence when the nonrestrictive word isa conjunctive adverb. Put a comma after the conjunctiveadverb. accordingly likewise besides nevertheless consequently however hence otherwise She will type the letters today; however, they won’t be mailed until tomorrow.