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Punctuation

  1. 1. Punctuation Karen Wright An Important Piece of the Puzzle
  2. 2. 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. 3. 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 that explains 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.
  4. 4. 6. When the date identifies the day of the week, the date is set off with a comma. On Thursday, August 25, school resumes. 7. Use a commas to set off the state when it identifies a city. I live in Chicago, Illinois, the home of the Cubs.
  5. 5. Commas 8. Use commas when writing full addresses in sentence form. I live at 2345 Westchester Blvd., Springfield, IL 62703 Do not use a comma between state and zip code. 9. Use commas to set off introductory phrases that come at the beginning of a sentence. Feeling anxious, George slowly stepped on the stage.
  6. 6. 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 relative clauses (not necessary to the meaning of the sentence) 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,
  7. 7. 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 quoted sentences from the rest of the sentence. Hamlet said, “To be or not to be. That is the question.”
  8. 8. Commas 15. 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.
  9. 9. The semi-colon has a greater degree of separation than the comma, but less than a period. A reader pauses more than he/she would for a comma and less than he/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.
  10. 10. 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 preceded an explanation or an enumeration. namely for instance that is for example Juan enjoys teaching English; namely he enjoys literature and composition.
  11. 11. 4. Use a semi-colon to separate the independent clauses of a compound sentence when the nonrestrictive word is a conjunctive adverb. Put a comma after the conjunctive adverb. accordingly likewise besides nevertheless consequently however hence otherwise She will type the letters today; however, they won’t be mailed until tomorrow.

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