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Common Core: 9-10.L.2a


Author: Sydney Bauer

This lesson introduces semicolons and how they are used.

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The semicolon falls somewhere between the full stop of a period and the slight pause of a comma. A semicolon connects two independent clauses that are closely related, but are either too long to be separated by a comma or contain commas within their structures (although it is perfectly fine to use a semicolon even when the independent clauses are short). To a certain extent you could replace the semicolon with “and.” 



When two independent clauses are connected by a coordinating conjunction, a semicolon appears after the first independent clause, but before the coordination conjunction. The coordinating conjunction is then followed immediately by a comma. Coordinating conjunctions include however, moreover, nonetheless…


Semicolons are also used to separate items in a list or series when the items are long or contain commas.