Wednesday, June 10, 2009

Your Simple Rules to Grammar, part 4

Part 1: Definitions
Part 2: IC/DC
Part 3: Prepositions

I can hear you. You're thinking that I can't possibly explain grammar in three short posts, one of which was just definitions.

You're right. There's one more caveat.

The Exception Rule: When you have dependent clauses or prepositional phrases in a row, the last one gets the comma unless it doesn't make sense in the sentence.

For example: I said before that you always follow a prepositional phrase with a comma. But what about this sentence?
After going to the bookstore in the city, I bought three books.
  • After going = prepositional phrase
  • to the bookstore = prepositional phrase
  • in the city = prepositional phrase
Punctuation follows the last one. You don't put a comma after every single one.

The Second Exception Rule: There are always exceptions to the rules. But don't you dare break them without understanding the rules first.

I love 'em. Ask away.
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