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Comma splices

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Mon Nov 28, 2011 9:46 am
Lavvie says...

It's an elaborate name for something grammatical but hardly as elaborate to understand or fix. Comma splices are simply two independent clauses joined together by a comma but without a proper coordinator and, in this case, coordinating conjunctions. You may use the following words as coordinating conjunctions: and, but, or, nor, yet, so. It is also said that for is included among this list, but I tend to disagree since for is a synonym for because (in the way that it would be used) and because is not included or even hinted to be included within that last. Thus, it makes little sense for for to be considered a coordinating conjunction.

You can also use end-stop punctuation to bring two independent clauses together. The more popular of end-stop of punctuation is the period (.) and the semi-colon (;).

Let's have an example. I have two sentences here:

The keys were lost.

We were locked out of the house.

If one were to make a mistake and write a comma splice with these two sentences, it would be something like:

The keys were lost, we were locked out of the house.

That is a comma splice since it the two independent clauses are being joined by a comma but without a coordinator. If then you were fix this error, you might write it using a period:

The keys were lost. We were locked out of the house.

With a semi-colon:

The keys were lost; we were locked out of the house.

With a coordinating conjunction:

The keys were lost, so we were locked out of the house.

The keys were lost, and we were locked out of the house.

Also, if you feel like keeping the comma, you can form a dependent clause:

Because the keys were lost, we were locked out of the house.
What is to give light must endure burning. – Viktor Frankl


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Fri Feb 03, 2012 10:56 pm
AlfredSymon says...

Yes, the clauses. I've always been confused without the commas! :D
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