In English, you use commas to separate introductory elements from the rest of a sentence. Find out how with David and Paige!
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- At1:45I think maybe you don’t need a comma when the independent clause is first because the tree can stand up on its own, and you can just place the ladder against it. If you place the ladder first, then it’ll fall. The comma is like a person holding it up while the tree grows to hold it up.(45 votes)
- It seems to me that in the sentence, "Initially, I was afraid." the word 'Initially' is more of a preposition because it casts "I was afraid" in light of a certain point in time. Am I wrong to think that?(14 votes)
- What is a dependent clause?(0 votes)
- Hi Judy! A dependent clause is a chunk of a sentence that can't stand on its own. For example: "*Although she had only been playing for two years,* Anna played the piano beautifully."
The first part of this sentence (before the comma) is a dependent clause. There's not enough information in this sentence element for it to stand on its own as a complete sentence. "Although she had only been playing for two years..." what? What was she playing? What was the result?
The second part of the sentence is an independent clause because "Anna played the piano beautifully" has enough information to stand on its own as a complete sentence. Hope this helps!(24 votes)
- So the sentence adverb is called that because it modifies the whole sentence? If it only modified one word, it wouldn't be called that?(8 votes)
- Do we always have to use commas?(6 votes)
- I know i have asked this before can you use a comma in a question(4 votes)
- Let's try one. "When Stacey preached at church on Easter Sunday, did she mention bunnies and colored eggs?"(6 votes)
- I am having trouble understanding how please take off your shoes is an independent clause because I do not see a subject. Is it because it is also an imperative sentence?
Thank you.(4 votes)
- The rule of thumb for identifying whether a clause is independent is to check whether it can act as a full sentence if you take it as a whole.
For the example you pointed out,yes,it is an imperative clause and hence has no subject.(6 votes)
- this is not related to the video at all but I want to know if I'm the only person that likes the read other users bio(5 votes)
- I occasionally read others' bios. I am impressed by how young learners are careful about putting too much information out there. That's good sense. I am, however, negatively impressed when learners in their early teens boast of being President and CEO of some corporation or other.(3 votes)
- At4:01Paige said, "Basically,you're the greatest." Can that sentence end with an exclamatory mark?(3 votes)
- [Voiceover] Hello grammarians! Paige and I are here to teach you about introductory elements in sentences and how commas relate to them. Paige, how should we define what an introductory element is? - [Voiceover] So, it's pretty much something that happens at the beginning of a sentence. It can be a dependent clause or an adverb. But as we will see soon, it is something that is separated off with, of course, a comma. - [Voiceover] Because that's what commas do. They are separators. So, let's talk about dependent clauses first. And let me just write out a sentence that begins with a dependent clause. "When you come in, please take off your shoes." And I've made the difference between the dependent clause and the independent clause pretty clear. So, this the dependent clause is purple, the independent clause is green. Is there a need for a comma here? - [Voiceover] Of course. - [Voiceover] Okay. (Paige laughs) Because we're leading with a dependent clause, and that means that this thing can't stand on it's own, right? It's like the ladder up against the tree. Because an independent clause, in green, can stand on its own; a dependent clause cannot. So, we need to differentiate it from the rest of the sentence by putting the comma there. So, this is a dependent clause. And this is an independent clause. So, if you start a sentence with a dependent clause, you're gonna need to put the comma in the middle before you proceed to the independent clause, which is the part that makes it an actual functioning sentence. - [Voiceover] Right. - [Voiceover] If you have it the other way around though, if it's just, "Please take off your shoes when you come in," no need for a comma. I'll show you. So, I'm not sure why this is. I think it may just sort of be a style relic. I'm not entirely certain. I mean, if you go back in American history and you look at the Federalist Papers and you look at the way that people used commas in the 18th century, it doesn't make a whole lot of sense, relative to how we use commas today. So, a lot of this is cultural. But I can tell you that when an independent clause comes before a dependent clause, you don't use a comma. And if you are uniting two independent clauses, in the following sentence, "I rode an elephant "and then I ate a mango," these two things are both independent clauses, right? I rode an elephant. Then I ate a mango, right? These two things need to be connected by this conjunction, and. But that's not all. They also need to be joined by a comma. Now, you could also sub out, if you wanted to, get rid of this comma and this and and put in a semicolon, but that's a story for another time. So, if you're uniting two independent clauses, just do comma and then a conjunction. So, that's one way to think about how to use commas for introductory elements like dependent and independent clauses. But there's also another thing I wanna introduce you to, and that's sentence adverbs. Follow us over to the next screen. So, Paige, what is a sentence adverb? How does it work? - [Voiceover] So, we've been talking about starting sentences with clauses, but that doesn't always have to be the case. You can start a sentence with an adverb. Like, let's say, "Initially, I was afraid." - [Voiceover] So, what is initially doing in this sentence here, in this expression? - [Voiceover] Basically, it's modifying the whole rest of the sentence. It's modifying the "I was afraid." - [Voiceover] So, we're gonna put a comma here to separate it from the rest of that expression. That's why we call it a sentence adverb, 'cause it's not, this is not the same as saying, "I was initially afraid." This is kind of, like you said, modifying the entire expression. Let's look at another example. - [Voiceover] "Basically, you're the greatest." - [Voiceover] Aww, thanks, Paige! So, we've got this word, basically, and basically is modifying the entire expression. It's kind of qualifying the whole thing. - [Voiceover] Right. - [Voiceover] So, we're gonna put a comma between this sentence adverb and the sentence itself. - [Voiceover] Exactly. - [Voiceover] Cool, so, initially, Paige, this seemed pretty complicated to me. - [Voiceover] Right, but, basically, I think we got it down. - [Voiceover] All right, we think that, essentially, you can learn anything. - [Voiceover] David out. - [Voiceover] Paige out.