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It's true. I have on in just about every paper I turn in, you think I'd learn by now. lol
In front of conjunctive adverbs? Those are usually the ones that get people.
This is my most recent one: However, he also did not want to spoil it for his little sister, he liked watching the look of wonder and excitement in her eyes on Christmas morning.
Ah, that's because you're feeling that deep connection between the first independent clause and the second. Why not go for a dash or a colon?
A colon tells your reader very particularly that what follows in some way explicates or amplifies what precedes. It would be perfect in this situation.
Yeah I think I just type to fast and it's one of those errors that grammar checkers rarely pick up and I never see it in proofreading either.
I think a semicolon will work better than a colon in your above example. A semicolon separates two complete sentences and replaces [,and] or [,but]. A colon precedes a list, most of the time.
No, a colon does far more than that. Grammatically, semicolons and colons can both conjoin two independent thoughts. Rhetorically, they differ. The semicolon balances and weighs two thoughts to be considered together. Often, they are balanced in parallel structure as well. The colon indicates that what follows further explains or illustrates in some way what has gone before. Additionally, the colon can be used to introduce a single word, a phrase, a series of phrases, a dependent clause, or a series of dependent clauses. It is very versatile. The semicolon is much more restricted. If you check in any good and complete grammar guide, you should see examples of this usage. I'll quote briefly from The Chicago Manual of Style (used throughout the publishing industry) -- 6.59 Use of the colon. A colon introduces an element or a series of elements illustrating or amplifying what has preceded the colon. Between independent clauses, it functions much like a semicolon, and in some cases either mark may work as well as the other; use a colon sparingly, however, and *only* to emphasize that the second clause illustrates or amplifies the first.
The example that follows of a colon between two independent clauses is this --
They even relied on a chronological analogy: just as the Year II had overshadowed 1789, so the October Revolution had eclipsed that of February.
That's all fine and dandy, but a semicolon STILL works better. :)
The semicolon balances like thoughts, meant to be held and weighed and judged together. If the second sentence clarifies the first, that is not a semicolon relationship. That is a colon relationship. In other words . . . Semicolons coordinate; colons explicate. If the relationship between the two thoughts can be characterized with "and," "but, "while," or "instead," the relationship is best expressed by a semicolon. If the relationship between the two thoughts can be characterized by words like "because," "that is," "namely," or "furthermore," the relationship is best expressed by a colon. In some cases, the relationship between the two thoughts could be characterized either way, and the mark of punctuation you choose indicates the relationship you intend. More examples (drawn from various sources) . . . Semicolons -- The tobacco companies produce products that kill the body; the networks spew out garbage that corrupts the mind. People today don’t talk about their consciences and how to appease them; they talk about their guilt trips and how to avoid them. Only the device interfaces of the driver are published in the Interface namespace; the names of interfaces “below” the driver are not. The advantage is central maintenance; the disadvantage is increased network traffic and slower response. Manipulating the grammar of the sentence alters clarity and precision; manipulating its rhetoric affects drama, emphasis, and impact. Artistic passion is necessary to genius; inartistic passion hinders it. Colons -- Few people will admit to being superstitious: it implies naivete or ignorance. This policy has introduced a new concept into German production: “birth to death” responsibility for commodities on the part of German manufacturers. My experience, however, has changed me: a certain innocence is gone forever. Filming an episode is a tedious process: capturing less than half an hour of entertainment will take nearly five hours. The ending of the letter is a conclusion: it implies that the foregoing qualities are good reason to interview or hire the employee. Actually, the data is not copied: it is “read” by creating a Java object with a reference to its memory location.
Thanks for the explanation Redwood Girl. I usually avoid colons and semicolons as much as possible because I always use them wrong. I think I can actually use them correctly now.
Nope. I still like the semicolon. I received a 4.0 in 2 college English classes using it this way. I stand by it.
@jagatuba, I'm so glad! The colon is a much-neglected mark of punctuation. I've had a difficult time convincing some students of this however. I don't know. Misguided rules learned early, I suppose. You should hear the controversy raised in some quarters by the revelation that you can, legitimately and quite successfully, begin a sentence with a coordinating conjunction. Miss Thistlebottom's hobgoblins live on . . .