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Semi Colon

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  Angbeen Chaudhary  —  Grammar Tips
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Punctuation is the basic element of English grammar and without it a sentence is not only incomplete but also insensible. There are various marks of punctuation that are used in sentences to give them more meaning and make it easier for the reader to understand. If we omit these punctuation marks from a sentence we will be left hanging. Also, without a punctuation mark a sentence can have various meanings and the reader might assume the meaning the writer is not conveying.

Today I will talk about the punctuation mark called semi colon and its usage in English language.

Denotation:

A semi colon is denoted by a period stacked on top of a comma and is represented by the symbol (;).

Semi Colon:

A semi colon’s usage in English language is somewhat between a comma and a period (the symbol it is represented by). In general it is used to join or connect two independent clauses without adding a conjunction like and or but etc.

Example:

I am planning to catch the evening bus; it leaves at 3:00 p.m.

In the above example, two independent clauses are used in a single sentence and they are joined together by a semi colon.

Note that the first letter of the first word coming after a semi colon is not capitalized.

The function of a semi colon is to act stronger than a comma and weaker than a period. So if there arise a need for pause that is stronger than comma and weaker than period, a semi colon is used.

Example:

I went up to the library; there was much to research about.

The conjunction in a sentence is omitted once a semi colon is used.

Example:

The play was awesome; the actors’ performance was great.

Note that the ‘and’ that would have been used if semi colon was not there is omitted in the above sentence.

 

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