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Parts of Speech,
Run-On Sentences,
Comma Splicing,
and
Fragments
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A Do-It-Yourself
WORKBOOK
By Barbara Murray
Parts of Speech, Run-On Sentences, Comma Splicing, and Fragments
Page 2
Table of Contents
To the Student …………………………………………………………………..………………………………..…….……………. 3
Parts of Speech
Nouns …………………….……………………………….……………………..………………………………………….. 4
Common Nouns and Proper Nouns …………………………………………………………………………….. 5
Compound Nouns …………………………………………………………………………………………………….. 6
Articles ……………………………………………………………………………………………………………………….. 7
Pronouns …………………………………………………………………………………………………………………….. 10
Verbs …………………..……………………………………………………………………………………………………… 13
Sentences
What is a Sentence? …………………………………………………………………………………………………… 17
What is a Fragment? …………………………………………………………………………………………………… 17
The Subject …..………………………………………………………………………………………………………………. 20
The Predicate ……..……………………………………………………………………………………………………… 21
Types of Sentences ………………………………………………………………………………………………………. 22
More Parts of Speech
Adjectives …………………………………………………………………………………………………………………. 24
Adverbs ……………………………………………………………………………………………………………………….. 27
Conjunctions ……………………………………………………………………………………………………………….. 29
Interjections ……………………………………………………………………………………………………………….. 31
Prepositions …………………………………………………………………………………………………………………. 32
Common Writing Errors
Run-On Sentences ………………………….……………………………………………………………………………. 35
Comma Splicing ……………………………………………………………………………………………………………. 38
Fragments ………………………………………….……………………………………………………………………….. 40
Final Exam ………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………….…. 47
Answers ………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………… 49
Parts of Speech, Run-On Sentences, Comma Splicing, and Fragments
Page 3
TO THE STUDENT
To get the most out of this booklet, it is strongly suggested that you check your answers at the
back of the book after each set of practice exercises. It is important to know as you go along if
you are understanding the concepts presented and doing the work correctly. You should correct
any mistakes you make before going forward. Proceeding slowly and cautiously is often the
fastest way to success.
You will get the most out of this booklet if you read everything and do not skip parts as you go
along. It is especially important that you read all examples so that you can use them as guides
in the exercises that follow.
Many of you will be able to go through this booklet without any outside help. However, if you
come across something that is unclear or that you don't understand, be sure to stop and ask your
teacher or some knowledgeable person for assistance.
It is my hope that this booklet will help you improve your writing skills and assist you in reaching
your academic goals.
Parts of Speech, Run-On Sentences, Comma Splicing, and Fragments
Page 4
Parts of Speech
Nouns
A noun is a word used to name a person, place, thing, or idea.
Examples of nouns:
Persons Places Things Ideas
mother city book memory
politician beach pencil beauty
brother state sneakers fear
doctor country jacket thought
uncle store cell phone dream
king mall computer happiness
president restaurant car success
Notice that persons, places, and things are physical and visible whereas ideas are not.
Ideas are abstract concepts that exist in the mind or are a product of mental activity.
Practice
Classify the following nouns as persons, places, things, or ideas, by writing them in the
appropriate columns below.
freeway hunger truth landscaper
umbrella kitchen calendar table
astronaut niece park violence
wealth theater DVD cemetery
canoe anger love watch
father iPad queen joy
airport lawyer island senator
Persons Places Things Ideas
____________ ____________ ____________ ____________
____________ ____________ ____________ ____________
____________ ____________ ____________ ____________
____________ ____________ ____________ ____________
____________ ____________ ____________ ____________
____________ ____________ ____________ ____________
____________ ____________ ____________ ____________
Parts of Speech, Run-On Sentences, Comma Splicing, and Fragments
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Common Nouns and Proper Nouns
Nouns are divided into two classes: common nouns and proper nouns.
A common noun names a class of things.
A proper noun names a particular person, place, or thing.
Examples:
Corresponding
Common Nouns Proper Nouns
city Boston
building World Trade Center
country England
mountain Mt. Washington
book Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire
(Proper nouns always begin with a capital letter.)
Practice
Choose from the list of words on the right to supply the missing common noun or proper
noun that is the best match in the pairs below.
Corresponding
Common Noun Proper Noun Word List
1. automobile ____________ God Bless America
2. ____________ Atlantic Tuesday
3. ____________ Chicago White Sox actor
4. song ____________ ocean
5. university ____________ president
6. day ____________ Titanic
7. ____________ Thoroughbred team
8. ____________ Tom Cruise Harvard
9. movie ____________ Toyota
10. ____________ Abraham Lincoln horse
Parts of Speech, Run-On Sentences, Comma Splicing, and Fragments
Page 6
Compound Nouns
Compound nouns are two or more words that are joined together to form a single noun.
Examples:
car pool blood pressure middle class
Some compound nouns are written as one word.
Examples:
football keyboard notebook
Some compound nouns are written with hyphens.
Examples:
sister-in-law cooking-oil six-pack
Practice
There is one compound noun in each of the following sentences. Underline each one.
1. An ice-axe is necessary when climbing some mountains.
2. The post office is closed on Sunday.
3. My grandmother will be ninety on Saturday.
4. His clothes were always secondhand.
5. The Air Force is in need of recruits.
6. I will search the database for his record.
7. Paul's half sister will visit next week.
8. On long hikes, you should take a water-bottle.
9. The evening was lit up by hundreds of fireflies.
10. Paper-clips are necessary in every office.
Parts of Speech, Run-On Sentences, Comma Splicing, and Fragments
Page 7
Articles
Articles are the words the, a, and an. These words are commonly found in sentences.
The difference between "the" and "a" or "an."
The is a definite article. It is used to refer to a particular noun, such as the book, meaning a
specific one.
"Get me the book," means get me a specific book.
A and an are indefinite articles as they refer to only one of a general group, such as a book,
meaning one of many.
"Get me a book," means "Get me any book. I don't care which one it is."
Whether to use "a" or "an" depends on the sound that begins the next word.
Rules:
1. An is used before words beginning with a vowel sound. The vowels are a, e, i, o, and u.
Examples: an apple, an elephant, an inch, an ox, an uncle.
2. A is used before words beginning with a consonant sound. A consonant is any letter that
is not a vowel: b, c, d, f, g, h, j, k, l, m, n, p, q, r, s, t, v, w, x, y, z.
Examples: a basketball, a carrot, a dog, a fly, a goat, a horse, a joke, a kite, a lemon,
a monkey, a nurse, a pie, a quarter, a rat, a squirrel, a toad, a vine, a wagon,
a xylophone, a yo-yo, a zoo.
Parts of Speech, Run-On Sentences, Comma Splicing, and Fragments
Page 8
Practice
Determine which indefinite article, a or an, goes before each of the words written below.
1. _____ ant 14. _____ only child 27. _____ mouse
2. _____ fence 15. _____ zipper 28. _____ school
3. _____ balloon 16. _____ egg 29. _____ newspaper
4. _____ orange 17. _____ pig 30. _____ enemy
5. _____ tractor 18. _____ umbrella 31. _____ vase
6. _____ eraser 19. _____ question 32. _____ orchard
7. _____ job 20. _____ hotel 33. _____ kitten
8. _____ insect 21. _____ reward 34. _____ garage
9. _____ debt 22. _____ igloo 35. _____ upgrade
10. _____ umpire 23. _____ car 36. _____ mile
11. _____ airplane 24. _____ halo 37. _____ axe
12. _____ iPad 25. _____ wheel 38. _____ yard
13. _____ hammer 26. _____ author 39. _____ letter
Parts of Speech, Run-On Sentences, Comma Splicing, and Fragments
Page 9
Exceptions to the previous rules for "a" and "an."
Whether to use "a" or "an" depends on the sound that begins the next word.
Therefore, there are a few exceptions to the previous rules for using "a" and "an:"
(a) In the previous rules, you were told to use "an" before a word beginning with a
vowel sound, such as an apple, an elephant, an inch, an ox, an uncle.
Sometimes, the letter h, a consonant, sounds more like a vowel when it is
pronounced because the h is silent. An should be used in this case.
Examples:
Sounds Like
an hour an our
an honorable discharge an onorable discharge
(b) In the previous rules, you were told to use "a" before a word beginning with a
consonant sound, such as a basketball, a carrot, a dog, a fly, a goat, a horse, a joke,
a kite, a lemon, a monkey, a nurse, a pie, a quarter, a rat, a squirrel, a toad, a vine,
a wagon, a xylophone, a yo-yo, a zoo.
Sometimes, a word that begins with a vowel actually has a consonant sound.
A should be used in this case.
Examples:
Sounds Like
a unicorn a yoo-nicorn
a European country a yer-opean country
Practice
Determine which indefinite article, a or an, goes before each of the words written below.
Sounds Like
1. _____ utility yoo-tility
2. _____ honest mistake onest mistake
3. _____ used car yoosed car
4. _____ university yoo-niversity
5. _____ x-ray ex-ray
6. _____ utensil yoo-tensil
Parts of Speech, Run-On Sentences, Comma Splicing, and Fragments
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Pronouns
A pronoun is a word used in place of one or more nouns.
Example: The teacher showed the students how to solve the problem.
She showed them how to do it.
She is used in place of teacher, them in place of students, and it in place of
problem.
There are many kinds of pronouns.
Personal pronouns, such as those shown below, are commonly used in sentences.
Singular Plural
I, me, my, mine we, us, our, ours
you, your, yours you, your, yours
he, his, him they, them, their, theirs
she, her, hers
it, its
Reflexive pronouns are:
Singular Plural
myself ourselves
yourself yourselves
himself, herself, itself themselves
Indefinite pronouns are:
all each more one
anybody either most other
another everybody much several
any everyone neither some
anyone everything nobody somebody
anything few none someone
both many no one such
Try to recognize pronouns when you see them. It is not necessary to remember what kind
they are.
Parts of Speech, Run-On Sentences, Comma Splicing, and Fragments
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Practice
There is one pronoun in each of the following sentences. Underline each one.
(All of the answers are listed as pronouns on the previous page. Look back if you aren't
sure or if you need a little help.)
1. I am going home.
2. We will meet in the morning.
3. The blue jacket belongs to me.
4. Take us to the airport.
5. The small dog is mine.
6. Our house is on the corner.
7. My phone is on the table.
8. The large pizza is ours.
9. You need to go home.
10. Is the basketball yours?
11. He is six feet tall.
12. Write down your phone number.
13. They belong to a rock band.
14. The blue car is his.
15. Show him how to use the calculator.
16. The fault is theirs.
17. She is on the honor roll.
18. Their lunch is on the counter.
19. Paul can see them swimming.
20. The future is known by no one.
21. The bicycle is hers.
22. It doesn’t matter.
23. Its owner is inside the house.
24. Sam can teach anyone to play the piano.
25. Treat yourselves to ice cream.
26. Jane did the job herself.
27. Everyone is welcome to come.
28. Several of the boys got into the row boat.
29. Is anybody home?
30. Someone lost a wallet.
31. Nobody knew the answer.
32. Alex and Alan will both be home.
33. Few of my friends like country music.
34. Somebody is at the door.
Parts of Speech, Run-On Sentences, Comma Splicing, and Fragments
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In addition to the previous pronouns, there are more.
Relative pronouns are:
who, whom, whose, which, and that.
Interrogative pronouns are:
who, whom, whose, which, and what.
Demonstrative pronouns are:
this, that, these, and those.
Practice
There is one pronoun in each of the following sentences. Underline each one.
(All of the answers come from the above list of pronouns.)
1. That is correct.
2. To whom is Alan speaking?
3. Those are expensive sneakers.
4. What is Wayne's favorite song?
5. Who is on the phone?
6. This is the time to begin dreaming.
7. These are hard times.
8. Which is the best painting?
9. Whose flashlight is on the ground?
Parts of Speech, Run-On Sentences, Comma Splicing, and Fragments
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Verbs
Some verbs are words that show action.
Action verbs
Examples of action verbs are:
run fight swim
shout laugh hit
Some action verbs express actions that cannot be seen because they are taking place
mentally. However, even though the action is invisible, an action is still taking place.
Examples of such verbs are:
trust ponder consider
evaluate review worry
Every sentence must have a subject.
The subject of sentence is the person or thing that the sentence is about.
The subject is usually a noun or pronoun.
Every sentence must have a verb.
An action verb tells what the subject of the sentence is doing, has done, or will do.
Examples:
Subject Action Verb
1. The dog chases the cat. The dog chases
2. Tim pondered the test question. Tim pondered
3. Shelly dances for a living. Shelly dances
4. Alan appears to be happy Alan appears
5. Paul shouts when he gets angry. Paul shouts
6. It takes four years to graduate. It takes
7. She fights for her life due to illness She fights
8. Babe Ruth hit the ball out of the park. Babe Ruth hit
9. We laughed a lot during the movie. We laughed
10. I will drive you to the store. I will drive
What part of speech a word is depends on how the word is used in a sentence.
Example: The light is still on in the other room. Light is used as a noun (a thing).
Please light the fire so it won't be cold. Light is used as a verb (an action).
Parts of Speech, Run-On Sentences, Comma Splicing, and Fragments
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Practice
There is one subject and one action verb in each of the following sentences. Write the subject
and the verb in the spaces provided.
Subject Action Verb
1. The deer sometimes run across the field. _______________ _______________
2. Nancy danced in a recital last night. ____________ ___ _______________
3. The birds chirp all day long. _______________ _______________
4. The baby cried all night long. _______________ _______________
5. Everyone sings before the baseball game. _______________ _______________
6. I love video games. _______________ _______________
7. The boy fell out of the tree. _______________ _______________
8. Dad built a deck onto the house. _______________ _______________
9. My son plays basketball at the high school. _______________ _______________
10. Mom cooked a roast beef dinner. _______________ _______________
11. The shark swam too close to the beach. _______________ _______________
12. The horse jumped over a four foot fence. _______________ _______________
13. Jane felt the soft fabric. _______________ _______________
14. I sent a text message to my friend. _______________ _______________
15. The woman stumbled over the rocky shore. _______________ _______________
16. Laura doubts the weather report. _______________ _______________
17. She studies hard for good grades. _______________ _______________
18. I ate lunch quickly. _______________ _______________
Parts of Speech, Run-On Sentences, Comma Splicing, and Fragments
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Linking verbs or being verbs
Some verbs are words that show being or existence.
Examples of these linking verbs or being verbs are:
be were shall have been should have been
being shall be will have been would have been
am will be should be
is has been would be
are have been can be
was had been could be
The above verbs are all forms of the verb "be." Any verb that ends with "be" or "been"
is a form of the verb "be."
Linking verbs link a noun or pronoun (the subject of a sentence) to words that describe
or rename it. Linking verbs serve as a link or connection between words on the left of
the verb and words on the right.
Examples:
1. I should be hungry. 3. The party was awesome.
The verb should be links I to hungry. The verb was links party to awesome.
Hungry describes the pronoun I. Awesome describes the party.
2. The world is a beautiful place. 4. Dinosaurs are extinct.
The verb is links the world to a beautiful place. The verb are links dinosaurs to extinct.
A beautiful place describes the noun world. Extinct describes dinosaurs.
The following verbs are also sometimes used as linking verbs:
appear become feel grow look
seem smell sound stay taste
Examples:
1. She seems tired. 3. Stephen King became famous.
Tired describes she. Famous describes Stephen King.
2. I feel good. 4. The strawberries taste delicious.
Good describes I. Delicious describes strawberries.
Parts of Speech, Run-On Sentences, Comma Splicing, and Fragments
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Practice
There is one linking verb in each of the following sentences. Underline each one.
1. I am so tired today.
2. The boys can be ready in five minutes.
3. The hot air balloon stays high in the sky.
4. School was closed today because of bad weather.
5. Pete could be a great athlete.
6. The corn grows high in August.
7. The children have been ill today.
8. The flowers smell wonderful.
9. Janice will be three this September.
10. Susan looked frightened during the movie.
11. Laura should have been careful with her money.
12. The surprise party was a success.
13. The football team appears worn out from the heat.
14. The politicians were desperate for votes.
15. Students will be happy on graduation day.
16. The storm had been violent for days.
17. My boss is being unreasonable today.
18. Today has been a lucky day.
Parts of Speech, Run-On Sentences, Comma Splicing, and Fragments
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Sentences
What is a Sentence?
A sentence is a group of words that:
a. expresses a complete thought.
b. has a subject.
c. has a predicate.
What is a Fragment?
A fragment is what results when one of the above parts (complete thought, subject,
or predicate) is missing. Fragments are a common writing error that students need
to understand and avoid.
A Complete Thought
In order to be a complete thought, a sentence must have two parts:
1. A sentence must be about someone or something.
This part is called the subject, which is usually a noun or a pronoun.
2. A sentence must tell something about the subject.
This part is called the predicate, and it must contain a verb.
The following groups of words do not express a complete thought. They are all fragments.
Each of them should make you feel that something is missing or unfinished.
Subject Predicate The Problem
1. The cat. The cat None What about the cat?
2. Warms my heart. None Warms my heart. Who or what warms my heart?
3. In the garden None None Who or what is in the garden?
There is no subject.
There also is no verb, and
therefore, no predicate.
Even if a group of words contains a noun or pronoun and a verb, this does not mean it is
a sentence. A complete thought may still be missing.
Noun or
Pronoun Verb The Problem
4. If it rains. it rains Not a complete thought.
If it rains, then what?
5. When the train arrives. train arrives Not a complete thought.
What will happen when the train
arrives?
Parts of Speech, Run-On Sentences, Comma Splicing, and Fragments
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Practice
Do the following groups of words express a complete thought? Write s for sentence if they do
and f for fragment if they do not.
1. Over the rainbow. 1. _______
2. Somewhere over the rainbow. 2. _______
3. Somewhere over the rainbow, skies are blue. 3. _______
4. Once in a while. 4. _______
5. The cabin in the mountains is isolated. 5. _______
6. It is true. 6. _______
7. Not true. 7. ________
8. The lighthouse on the rocks near York, Maine. 8. ________
9. Places to go and so much to do. 9. ________
10. The dog barked. 10. ________
11. Red, white, and blue. 11. ________
12. The American flag. 12. ________
13. The American flag is red, white, and blue. 13. ________
14. To be or not to be. 14. ________
15. I'm ready for whatever comes. 15. ________
16. A threatening storm is predicted for tonight. 16. ________
17. After high school, when I get a job. 17. ________
18. My brother and I share the computer. 18. ________
19. Not a cloud in the sky. 19. ________
Parts of Speech, Run-On Sentences, Comma Splicing, and Fragments
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It is not length and number of words that make a sentence.
______________________________________________________________________________
A VERY SHORT SENTENCE
It may surprise you to learn that the following is a complete (although short) sentence:
"T'is." is a complete sentence.
T'is is a shortcut way of saying, "It is."
The subject is "It." The verb is "is." The predicate is "is."
"It is." expresses a complete thought.
An example of how this sentence might show up in a paragraph is as follows:
"Is it likely that our dog Rover stole the hamburgers off the grill when we weren't looking?"
"T'is."
"T'is." or "It is." answers the question by implying, "Yes, it is likely that Rover stole the
hamburgers."
______________________________________________________________________________
A VERY LONG FRAGMENT
On the other hand, a lot of words do not necessarily make a sentence.
As an example, the following group of words, although many, represent a long fragment.
Under the shade of the apple tree down in the meadow by the meandering stream.
There are plenty of nouns in the above fragment: shade, tree, meadow, stream.
However, there is no subject and no action or linking verb.
The above fragment merely names a place, "under the shade of the apple tree" and then
goes on to describe where this apple tree is located: "down in the meadow by the
meandering stream." This is not a complete thought because the words fail to convey what
happened or is going to happen under the apple tree. Why is this place being described?
For what reason? Something is missing.
The above fragment could be made into a sentence by adding a subject and verb.
I will meet you under the shade of the apple tree down in the meadow by the meandering
stream. Now there is a pronoun, I, which is the subject of the sentence, and a verb, will meet.
Now there is a complete thought.
Please note: Noun and subject are not the same thing. A noun names a person, place, thing,
or idea. A subject is a name for a part of a sentence.
Parts of Speech, Run-On Sentences, Comma Splicing, and Fragments
Page 20
The Subject
Every sentence must have a subject because a sentence must be about someone or something.
The subject is usually a noun or a pronoun
The Complete Subject and the Simple Subject
The complete subject is all the words taken together that describe the subject.
The simple subject is the main word (or group of words) that describes the subject.
Examples:
1. Sentence: The large red apple fell from the tree to the ground.
Complete Subject: The large red apple
Simple Subject: apple
2. Sentence: The Grand Canyon in Arizona is a wonderful sight to see.
Complete Subject: The Grand Canyon in Arizona
Simple Subject: Grand Canyon
Locating the simple subject can help to determine whether a group of words is a sentence
or a fragment.
Practice
For each of the following sentences, underline the complete subject. Then write the simple
subject on the line provided.
Simple Subject
1. Larry's leather jacket is still his favorite. 1. ____________
2. The John Deere tractor does a great job. 2. ____________
3. Bob's trailer truck overturned on the highway. 3. ____________
4. The young pilot flew his helicopter over the city. 4. ____________
5. Mr. Johnson's class went on a field trip. 5. ____________
6. Sixty-two people entered the bicycle race. 6. ____________
7. Two young girls sold lemonade on the corner. 7. ____________
8. Three wild turkeys walked down a country road. 8. ____________
Parts of Speech, Run-On Sentences, Comma Splicing, and Fragments
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The Predicate
Every sentence must have a predicate because a sentence must tell something about the subject.
The predicate must contain a verb.
The Complete Predicate and the Simple Predicate
The complete predicate is all the words that say something about the subject.
The simple predicate is the verb. The verb is the essential part of the predicate.
Examples:
1. Sentence: The large red apple fell from the tree to the ground.
Complete Predicate: fell from the tree to the ground
Simple Predicate: fell
2. Sentence: The Grand Canyon in Arizona is a wonderful sight to see.
Complete Predicate: is a wonderful sight to see
Simple Predicate: is
Locating the simple predicate, the verb, can help to determine whether a group of words
is a sentence or a fragment.
Practice
For each of the following sentences, underline the complete predicate. Then write the
simple predicate on the line provided.
Simple Predicate
1. Larry's leather jacket is still his favorite. 1. ______________
2. The John Deere tractor does a great job. 2. ______________
3. Bob's trailer truck overturned on the highway. 3. ______________
4. The young pilot flew his helicopter over the city. 4. ______________
5. Mr. Johnson's class went on a field trip. 5. ______________
6. Sixty-two people entered the bicycle race. 6. ______________
7. Two young girls sold lemonade on the corner. 7. ______________
8. Three wild turkeys walked down a country road. 8. ______________
Parts of Speech, Run-On Sentences, Comma Splicing, and Fragments
Page 22
Types of Sentences
There are four types of sentences:
1. declarative 2. imperative 3. interrogative 4. exclamatory
--------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
A declarative sentence makes a statement and ends with a period. Most sentences are of
this type.
Examples:
1. Niagara Falls is the name given to three waterfalls that are on the border between
Canada and New York state.
2. The seven continents are Africa, Antarctica, Asia, Australia, Europe, North America,
and South America.
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An imperative sentence gives a command or makes a request. This type of sentence also ends
with a period.
Examples:
1. Please pass the potatoes.
2. Be home by midnight at the latest.
IMPORTANT: The above sentences appear to have no subject. There is a subject, even though
it is not written. The subject of both sentences is "you." "You" is understood to
be the subject of every imperative sentence. The word "you," although not
written, is implied. The above sentences could be interpreted as:
1. You, please pass the potatoes.
2. You be home by midnight at the latest.
You is the subject of the sentences because "you" is the person being spoken to.
Go! is a sentence. It is an imperative sentence with a subject (you) and a verb (go). This one
word meets the requirements of a sentence because there is a subject, a predicate, and a
complete thought.
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An interrogative sentence asks a question and ends with a question mark.
Examples:
1. Where are you going?
2. What time will you be home?
3. Who else is going?
4. When are you leaving?
5. Why are you looking at me like that?
Many questions begin with the words who, what, when, where, or why. Others do not:
6. Can I come too?
7. Would you like me to bring pizza?
Every question expects or waits for an answer.
Parts of Speech, Run-On Sentences, Comma Splicing, and Fragments
Page 23
An exclamatory sentence expresses strong emotion and ends with an exclamation point.
Exclamation points should be used sparingly in your writing.
Examples:
1. The house is on fire!
2. Don't pat that stray dog!
Be careful!
If a declarative, imperative, or interrogative sentence shows strong emotion, it should be
considered an exclamatory sentence and should end with an exclamation point.
Examples:
1. Hornets are everywhere!
A statement showing strong emotion should end with an exclamation point.
2. Get out now!
A request or command showing strong emotion should end with an exclamation point.
3. Did that dog bite you!
A question showing strong emotion should end with an exclamation point.
--------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Practice
For each sentence below, supply the ending punctuation mark by writing either a period,
a question mark, or an exclamation point. Then state whether the sentence is declarative,
imperative, interrogative, or exclamatory.
1. Have you seen my car keys _____ _________________________
2. I would like to be a great artist someday _____ _________________________
3. What time is it _____ _________________________
4. Call 911 _____ _________________________
5. Help me set the table for dinner _____ _________________________
6. Hybrid cars are powered by gasoline and electricity _____ _________________________
7. Take an umbrella with you _____ _________________________
8. Do you think she'll return my call _____ _________________________
9. Watch out for that snake _____ _________________________
10. When are you going to Bermuda _____ _________________________
Parts of Speech, Run-On Sentences, Comma Splicing, and Fragments
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More Parts of Speech
Adjectives
An adjective is a word that describes (or modifies) a noun or a pronoun.
An adjective may indicate:
a. what kind of a thing something is:
old car heavy package long rope
b. which one something is:
this jacket that building those papers
c. how many there are of something:
few words some people sixty-two feet
The above adjectives all describe nouns.
-----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
An adjective does not always come before the noun or pronoun it describes.
Examples:
The grass is green. Green describes grass.
The boy was hungry. Hungry describes boy.
She is excited. Excited describes "she."
They seem disappointed. Disappointed describes "they."
An adjective is almost always separated from a pronoun, such as "she" or "they."
-----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
The words the, a, and an are also adjectives, but since they are the most frequently used
adjectives, they are given the special name of articles.
Examples:
The dog barked.
She waited for an hour.
Dan got on a boat at the dock.
-------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Pronouns or adjectives?
What about sentences like "This is my book" or "That is her phone."
Since my describes book and her describes phone, are these words adjectives or
are they still pronouns?
Answer: Pronouns
Pronouns that describe nouns are considered possessive pronouns and not adjectives.
Parts of Speech, Run-On Sentences, Comma Splicing, and Fragments
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Practice
There is one adjective in each of the following sentences. Underline each one.
1. The big hill is good for skiing.
2. The dark sky predicts trouble.
3. Several cows live in the barn.
4. The popcorn was tasty.
5. I saw two accidents this morning on my way to work.
6. Many students have trouble with algebra.
7. Look at that beautiful car.
8. Alice does not like black olives.
9. Few people come to this place.
10. There are fifty states in the U.S.
11. The great Titanic hit an iceberg.
12. The boys love pepperoni pizza.
13. They are happy to be here.
14. A small box arrived in the mail.
15. The doctor wore a white jacket.
16. The students were glad when school ended.
17. My throat is sore this morning.
18. The water in the lake was cold.
Parts of Speech, Run-On Sentences, Comma Splicing, and Fragments
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What part of speech a word is depends on how the word is used in a sentence:
I am wearing a silver bracelet. Silver is an adjective because it describes bracelet.
I love gold and silver. Silver is a noun because it names a thing.
Those are my books. Those is a pronoun because it takes the place of books.
Those books are mine. Those is an adjective because it describes books.
[When deciding if a word is a pronoun or adjective, the word is an adjective if it comes immediately
before the noun, such as in those books.
The light is on in the kitchen. Light is a noun because it names a thing.
Let's light the candles tonight. Light is a verb because it indicates an action.
Give me the light package to carry. Light is an adjective because it describes the package.
[Sometimes nouns are used as adjectives, as in college campus. College describes campus.]
---------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Practice
Name the part of speech that is shown in bold in the sentences below. The answer will be
either a noun, a pronoun, a verb, or an adjective.
Part of Speech
1. The tall ship sailed into the harbor. 1. _______________
2. The tall ship sailed into the harbor. 2. _______________
3. Cook the hotdogs on the grill. 3. _______________
4. The cook prepared a feast for us. 4. _______________
5. Let the pie cool on the counter. 5. _______________
6. That is such a cool idea. 6. _______________
7. They watched the game on T.V. 7. _______________
8. There is no excuse for what you did. 8. _______________
9. Please excuse me. 9. _______________
10. The wool blanket kept me warm. 10. _______________
Parts of Speech, Run-On Sentences, Comma Splicing, and Fragments
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Adverbs
An adverb describes a verb by telling how, when, where, or to what extent.
An adverb often comes right after the verb it describes.
Examples:
1. Alan swims. The verb in this sentence is swims.
2. Alan swims quickly. Quickly is an adverb that describes how Alan swims.
3. Alan swims nightly. Nightly is an adverb that describes when Alan swims.
4. Alan swims here. Here is an adverb that describes where Alan swims.
5. Alan swims frequently. Frequently is an adverb that describes to what extent
Alan swims.
------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Sometimes an adverb describes an adjective.
Examples:
1. The performance was remarkably good.
Good is an adjective that describes performance.
Remarkably is an adverb that describes good. How good? Remarkably good.
2. Dan is an extremely nice man.
Nice is an adjective that describes man.
Extremely is an adverb that describes nice. How nice? Extremely nice.
3. I am very tired tonight.
Tired is an adjective that describes the word I.
Very is an adverb that describes tired. How tired? Very tired.
Note: The most frequently used adverb is very. You should avoid it whenever possible in
your writing and try to find another word to take its place, such as extremely,
awfully, especially, vastly, enormously.
------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
An adverb can also describe another adverb.
Example:
The horse moved too quickly.
Quickly is an adverb that describes how the horse moved.
Too is an adverb that describes quickly. How quickly? Too quickly.
----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Most adverbs end in - ly, but some that do not are always, never, very, soon, not, too.
Example:
Rene did not win a spot on the team.
Not is an adverb that comes between the parts of the verb did and win.
How did Rene win? She did not win.
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Practice
There is one adverb in each of the following sentences. Find the adverb by identifying the
word that describes how, when, where, or to what extent. Then underline the adverb.
1. Laura sings beautifully.
2. John ran swiftly toward the finish line.
3. We yelled excitedly when our team won.
4. It is too hot to work.
5. I am very happy you came.
6. They carefully planned their vacation.
7. The rabbit cleverly avoided the fox.
8. The kids adjusted easily to their new school.
9. An unusually large package arrived in the mail.
10. Some people are always late.
11. The car was slightly damaged in the accident.
12. Diane did remarkably well on her calculus test.
13. She ran angrily out of the room.
14. Lost in a blizzard, the men were terribly cold.
15. I left your car keys there.
16. It was quite warm in the sun.
17. It is extremely cold outside.
18. I seriously believe you are making a big mistake.
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Conjunctions
Conjunctions are used to join words or groups of words or sentences.
Note: When two complete sentences are combined with a conjunction, a comma comes
before the conjunction.
Below is a list of commonly used conjunctions and when they are used. Each of the examples
shows two complete sentences being joined by a conjunction. Therefore, notice that there is
a comma before the conjunction.
Used to Example
1. and add information The car hit a tree, and the driver was injured.
2. but show a contrast It was raining, but I went for a swim.
3. yet show a contrast Sam is sixty years old, yet he still runs every day.
4. so show a cause and then the effect The dog got sick, so she took him to the vet.
5. for show an effect and then the cause She shut the windows, for a storm was coming.
6. or show two alternatives I'll sit in the sun, or I'll go in the water.
7. nor show two negatives Jan will not study, nor will she practice the piano.
In the examples shown above, there is a complete sentence to the left of the conjunction and a
complete sentence to the right of the conjunction:
Two Complete Sentences The Two Sentences Combined
1. The car hit a tree. The car hit a tree, and the driver was injured.
The driver was injured.
2. It was raining. It was raining, but I went for a swim anyways.
I went for a swim anyways.
3. Sam is sixty years old. Sam is sixty years old, yet he still runs every day.
He still runs every day.
4. The dog got sick. The dog got sick, so she took him to the vet.
She took him to the vet.
5. She shut the windows. She shut the windows, for a storm was coming.
A storm was coming.
6. I'll sit in the sun. I'll sit in the sun, or I'll go in the water.
I'll go in the water.
7. Jan will not study Jan will not study, nor will she practice the piano.
She will not practice the piano.
(Nor is used to combine these two negatives.
Jan will not study, nor will she practice the piano
has the same meaning as
Jan will not study, and she will not practice the piano.
Parts of Speech, Run-On Sentences, Comma Splicing, and Fragments
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Practice
Combine the two sentences below by using the conjunction shown in parenthesis.
Remember to put a comma before the conjunction.
1. It's a beautiful summer day. We're off to the beach. (and)
________________________________________________________________________
2. The meeting starts at 7:00 p.m. You need to be on time. (and)
________________________________________________________________________
3. I would like to go to school today. I'm feeling too sick. (but)
________________________________________________________________________
4. Alice would love to buy a new car. She can't afford the payments. (but)
________________________________________________________________________
5. This jacket is so old and worn out. It remains my favorite. (yet)
________________________________________________________________________
6. I'll have to study. I can pass algebra. (so)
________________________________________________________________________
7. Bob yelled at the dog. It was digging holes in the yard. (for)
________________________________________________________________________
8. Do your homework. You can't watch T.V. (or)
________________________________________________________________________
9. Emily does not want to go shopping. Emily does not want to see a movie. (nor)
________________________________________________________________________
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Some conjunctions are used in pairs:
Either . . . or An either must have an or
Neither . . . nor A neither must have a nor
Both . . . and A both needs an and
Not only . . . but also A not only needs a but also
Examples:
1. Either you or your sister will have to help me bring groceries in from the car.
2. Neither bad weather nor the cold I feel coming on will keep me from seeing that new movie.
3. Both my teacher and the students in my class enjoyed my book report.
4. The fire destroyed not only the house but also the barn.
Notice that there are no commas in the above sentences.
-------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
More will be said about conjunctions later on in this book.
-------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Interjections
An interjection is a word that expresses emotion and is not grammatically related to other
words in the sentence.
Interjections that show sudden or strong emotion can stand alone and are usually followed
by an exclamation point.
Examples:
Aha! Gee! Ha-ha! Huh? Ouch! Shh! Uh-oh! Oops! Whoa! Oh! Yuck! Wow! Ugh! Hooray!
Interjections that show only mild emotion at the beginning of sentence should be followed
by a comma.
Examples:
Hey, get off that bike. It's mine!
Wow, look at that old Model T Ford.
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Prepositions
Below is list of commonly used prepositions:
about because by including outside until
above before concerning inside over up
across behind down into past upon
after below during like since with
against beneath except near through within
along beside following of throughout without
among besides for off to
around between from on toward
as beyond given into under
at but in onto underneath
Prepositional Phrase
A prepositional phrase is a group of words that begins with a preposition and ends with a
noun or pronoun: at the table, beside her.
More examples:
Above the horizon, across the street, after the storm, along the road, against the wind, among
the crowd, around the corner, before dinner, behind the barn, below the deck, beneath the
beach umbrella, beyond belief, during the night, following the parade, from the beginning,
including her, inside the shelter, near the lake, into the forest, outside the gymnasium, since
many days ago, throughout the night, under the overpass, until tomorrow, up the mountain,
upon hearing about it, without a clue.
How to Find the Subject of a Sentence with Prepositional Phrases
Every sentence must have a subject. The subject of a sentence is NEVER in a prepositional phrase.
It can sometimes be difficult to find the subject of a sentence. It helps to first locate the verb and
go from there.
Examples:
1. The flowers in the garden are growing rapidly.
The verb is "are growing." What are growing? The flowers are growing.
Flowers is the subject. "In the garden" is a prepositional phrase. To find the subject of a
sentence, it often helps to cross out any prepositional phrases:
The flowers in the garden are growing rapidly.
Parts of Speech, Run-On Sentences, Comma Splicing, and Fragments
Page 33
Examples (continued):
2. Into the forest ran the black bear.
The verb is "ran." What ran? The bear ran. Bear is the subject.
Into the forest ran the black bear.
This could also be written or interpreted as "The black bear ran into the forest.
3. One of my friends likes to talk a lot.
The verb is "likes." Who likes to talk? You may be tempted to say friends, but this
is not the subject. The subject is One. "Of my friends" is a prepositional phrase.
One of my friends likes to talk a lot.
Sentences Beginning with There or Here
When a sentence begins with the words "There" or "Here," you may think that "there" or "here"
is the subject of the sentence, but this is not the case. Once again, use the verb to help you
find the subject.
4. There is an eagle flying above the lake. What is flying? An eagle is flying.
The subject is eagle. Above the lake is a prepositional phrase.
There is an eagle flying above the lake.
Sentences That Ask Questions
Questions usually begin with When, Where, How, Why, What, or a verb.
A good way to find the subject is to turn the question into a statement, then find the verb
and go from there.
5. Question: Is Susan going to San Francisco?
Statement: Susan is going to San Francisco.
Who is going? Susan. Susan is the subject.
6. Question: Why is the horse limping?
Statement: The horse is limping.
What is limping? The horse. Horse is the subject.
(When a verb is separated into two parts, such as in this example, Why is the horse limping?,
the subject always comes in the middle of the two parts of the verb.)
Parts of Speech, Run-On Sentences, Comma Splicing, and Fragments
Page 34
A compound preposition is composed of more than one word.
Examples:
according to by reason of in order to on account of
along with due to in place of out of
as of except for in spite of prior to
because of in addition to instead of together with
by means of in front of next to with regard to
Practice
For each sentence below, determine the simple subject. Cross out any prepositional phrases
if they exist.
Simple Subject
1. The boys in the back of the room were texting. _______________
2. Behind the parade strolled clowns holding red balloons. _______________
3. Two of the New England Patriots are being traded this year. _______________
4. There are storm clouds on the horizon. _______________
5. What are the consequences of getting a speeding ticket? _______________
6. When will you come to visit me again? _______________
7. Is the store on the corner open until 11:00 p.m.? _______________
8. Why is that airplane flying so low? _______________
9. According to the weather forecast, a hurricane is coming. _______________
10. Instead of going skiing, we could go ice skating. _______________
11. Due to a bad economy, many people are unemployed. _______________
12. Because of reduced rates, many joined the health club. _______________
13. Down in the meadow the birds chirped. _______________
14. In order to succeed, one needs to work hard. _______________
15. Over the river and through the woods to Grandmother's
house we go. _______________
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Page 35
Common Writing Errors
Run-On Sentences
A run-on sentence consists of two complete sentences run together without the correct
punctuation between them. This is one of the most common writing errors among beginners.
Below are two examples of run-on sentences. In each case, two complete sentences are
simply run together with no punctuation between them.
One way to correct this type of run-on sentence is to write two separate sentences.
Examples:
1. Run-on: The earthquake surprised everyone many people died.
Corrected: The earthquake surprised everyone. Many people died.
Note: A period has to be written at the end of the first sentence, and the first word of
the second sentence needs to be capitalized.
2. Run-on: It is a beautiful day today I'm going to make the most of it.
Corrected: It is a beautiful day today. I'm going to make the most of it.
Practice
Correct each of the run-on sentences below by writing two separate sentences.
1. I bought a red canoe I can't wait to use it on the lake.
_________________________________________________________________________
2. The police saw the robber exit the store they chased him.
_________________________________________________________________________
3. Cooking is Alice's favorite activity she is an expert cook.
_________________________________________________________________________
4. A strange dog chased my cat the cat ran up a tree to get away.
_________________________________________________________________________
5. After the storm, a rainbow appeared the air smelled fresh and clean.
_________________________________________________________________________
6. There was an accident on the freeway traffic was backed up for miles.
_________________________________________________________________________
7. Jim buys lottery tickets every week he has never won a thing.
_________________________________________________________________________
Parts of Speech, Run-On Sentences, Comma Splicing, and Fragments
Page 36
There is a second way to correct a run-on sentence.
Instead of making two separate sentences out of the run-on sentence, the first sentence can be
joined to the second sentence by using a conjunction. Any conjunction (and, but, yet, so,
for, or, nor) can be used to join sentences, but for this set of exercises, only and will be used.
Examples:
1. Run-on: Mt. Everest is the tallest mountain many have died climbing to its summit.
Corrected: Mt. Everest is the tallest mountain, and many have died climbing to its summit.
Note: A comma needs to be written at the end of the first sentence and before the
conjunction.
2. Run-on: The wind howled outside Sam was glad to be inside by the fire.
Corrected: The wind howled outside, and Sam was glad to be inside by the fire.
Practice
Correct each of the run-on sentences below by joining the two sentences with the conjunction
"and." (Don't forget the comma before the conjunction!)
1. The quarterback threw the ball the wide receiver caught it easily.
_________________________________________________________________________
2. We played Monopoly last night Matt beat everyone.
_________________________________________________________________________
3. We lost power all the food in the refrigerator spoiled.
_________________________________________________________________________
4. The Titanic sank on April 15, 1912 more than 1,500 people lost their lives.
_________________________________________________________________________
5. The seagull perched on the rock for awhile then it took off and flew away.
_________________________________________________________________________
6. I want to visit the Grand Canyon my plan is to go there next summer.
_________________________________________________________________________
7. My favorite meal is spaghetti and meatballs I make it every Sunday.
_________________________________________________________________________
Parts of Speech, Run-On Sentences, Comma Splicing, and Fragments
Page 37
There is a third way to correct a run-on sentence.
Instead of making two separate sentences or joining the two sentences with a conjunction,
the third method is to put a semicolon (;) between the two sentences.
Examples:
1. Run-on: Safety is important welders should wear goggles to protect their eyes.
Corrected: Safety is important; welders should wear goggles to protect their eyes.
Note: A semicolon should only be used when the thoughts in the two sentences are
closely connected or about the same subject, and the two sentences are fairly
short. Do not capitalize the first word of the second sentence.
2. Run-on: Eagles soared above the lake what a beautiful sight to see!
Corrected: Eagles soared above the lake; what a beautiful sight to see!
Practice
Correct each of the run-on sentences below by inserting a semicolon between the two
sentences.
1. Jupiter is the largest planet in our solar system it can be seen by the naked eye.
_________________________________________________________________________
2. The Nobel Peace Prize is awarded every year the winner receives over a million dollars.
_________________________________________________________________________
3. My apple pie won the contest this was the second year in a row that I got the blue ribbon.
_________________________________________________________________________
4. Joe swims thirty laps a day at the pool he is a physical fitness instructor.
_________________________________________________________________________
5. Inflation is causing prices to rise people are buying less these days at the grocery store.
_________________________________________________________________________
6. Owls are solitary birds that are active at night a group of owls is called a parliament.
_________________________________________________________________________
7. A piece of paper cannot be folded in half more than eight times is this true?
_________________________________________________________________________
Parts of Speech, Run-On Sentences, Comma Splicing, and Fragments
Page 38
Comma Splicing
It is also NOT CORRECT to connect two complete sentences with a comma.
This results in what is called "comma splicing," which is another form of a run-on sentence.
Comma splicing is another writing error that is common among beginners.
As with all run-on sentences, comma splicing can be corrected in three different ways:
1. Remove the comma, and write two separate sentences.
2. Join the two sentences with a conjunction.
3. Remove the comma, and put a semicolon between the two sentences.
Below are two examples of comma splicing,
Example 1:
Comma splice: The train was late arriving at the station, many people were unhappy.
Correction 1: The train was late arriving at the station. Many people were unhappy.
Correction 2: The train was late arriving at the station, and many people were unhappy.
Correction 3: The train was late arriving at the station; many people were unhappy.
Example 2:
Comma splice: New York City has five boroughs, one of them is Manhattan.
Correction 1: New York City has five boroughs. One of them is Manhattan.
Correction 2: New York City has five boroughs, and one of them is Manhattan.
Correction 3: New York City has five boroughs; one of them is Manhattan.
____________________________________________________________________________
Experienced writers sometimes ignore the standards of English in their writing in order to
produce a certain effect.
A famous example of comma splicing is the sentence,
"I came, I saw, I conquered."
Suggestion: Do not use comma splicing in your writing and then tell your teacher you're
doing it to produce a desired effect!
Parts of Speech, Run-On Sentences, Comma Splicing, and Fragments
Page 39
Practice
If you are in the habit of writing run-on sentences or comma splices, these practice problems
will help you break this habit and recognize this error when it occurs.
Use each of the three methods shown on the previous page to correct the comma splicing in
the sentences below. (Use and for the correction requiring a conjunction.)
1. The dog bit the cat's tail, the cat meowed loudly.
_________________________________________________________________________
_________________________________________________________________________
_________________________________________________________________________
2. The left side of a ship is called port side, the right side is called starboard.
_________________________________________________________________________
_________________________________________________________________________
_________________________________________________________________________
3. A major 7.9 earthquake hit San Francisco in 1906, over 3,000 people died.
_________________________________________________________________________
_________________________________________________________________________
_________________________________________________________________________
4. Cherokee Indians were forced to move to Oklahoma, many died on the Trail of Tears.
_________________________________________________________________________
_________________________________________________________________________
_________________________________________________________________________
5. A crock-pot is a handy cooking device, it can produce excellent meals.
_________________________________________________________________________
_________________________________________________________________________
_________________________________________________________________________
6. Every student of geometry knows Pythagoras, a theorem is named after him.
_________________________________________________________________________
_________________________________________________________________________
_________________________________________________________________________
7. Rabies is a deadly viral infection, it is spread through the bite of an infected animal.
________________________________________________________________________
_________________________________________________________________________
_________________________________________________________________________
Parts of Speech, Run-On Sentences, Comma Splicing, and Fragments
Page 40
Fragments
When we talk, we often leave out parts of sentences and speak in fragments.
Example:
"Where's Holly?" This is a sentence.
"At the office working overtime." This is not a sentence. There is no subject.
Explanation:
"At the office" is a prepositional phrase. Every sentence must have a subject, and the
subject is never in a prepositional phrase. "At the office working overtime." If you remove
the prepositional phrase, all that is left is "working overtime." There is no subject. Who is
working overtime? A complete sentence would be: "Holly is at the office working overtime."
Fragments are not allowed in formal writing. It is necessary to write complete sentences.
There is one exception to this, however, and it comes when you are quoting someone, and
you put what the person says in quotation marks. This is often done in novels. Authors
want their stories to sound authentic. They want people to sound the way they actually talk,
so they put what their characters say in quotation marks to show those words as being the
actual words spoken. Fragments are appropriate and are allowed in this instance.
Take a moment to review a list of commonly used prepositions shown below:
about because by including outside until
above before concerning inside over up
across behind down into past upon
after below during like since with
against beneath except near through within
along beside following of throughout without
among besides for off to
around between from on toward
as beyond given into under
at but in onto underneath
Parts of Speech, Run-On Sentences, Comma Splicing, and Fragments
Page 41
A fragment is a group of words that does not express a complete thought.
Beginning a sentence with a prepositional phrase and stopping there results in a
fragment. Examples of this are shown below. Something must be added to the
prepositional phrase to complete the thought and make a sentence
Please note in all of the sentences below, a comma is placed after each prepositional
phrase before more words are added to make a sentence.
Examples:
1. Fragment: About the time I was getting up.
This fragment only names a time. What happened about that time? The thought is unfinished.
Sentence: About the time I was getting up, I heard a loud bang outside.
2. Fragment: Underneath the ocean, 12,600 feet down.
This fragment only names a place. What happened in that place? The thought is unfinished.
Sentence: Underneath the ocean, 12,600 feet down, the Titanic rested for 74 years until
it was discovered in 1985.
3. Fragment: Following my discussion with the principal.
This fragment describes a time. What happened after that time?
Sentence: Following my discussion with the principal, I better understood my son's problems.
4. Fragment: Without knowing any details.
This fragment is an incomplete thought. What about not knowing any details?
Sentence: Without knowing any details, I responded to the cry for help from my neighbor.
5. Fragment: Behind the store in the alley.
This fragment describes a place but does not say what is going on in that place.
Sentence: Behind the store in the alley, the truck parked to unload our order.
6. Fragment: Out on the ocean far away.
This fragment again describes a place. What about that place?
Sentence: Out on the ocean far away, I saw a huge cargo ship.
7. Fragment: Throughout the long night.
This fragment describes a time. What happened during that time?
Sentence: Throughout the long night, the storm increased in intensity.
Parts of Speech, Run-On Sentences, Comma Splicing, and Fragments
Page 42
Practice
Do the following groups of words express a complete thought? Write s for sentence if they do
and f for fragment if they do not.
1. During the wettest summer on record. 1. _______
2. Until 7:00 p.m., Harry will be busy. 2. _______
3. Up on the rooftop, Rudolph pranced. 3. _______
4. Across the Mexican border in Tijuana. 4. _______
5. Around the time of the setting sun. 5. _______
6. Down on the river, the boats are all anchored. 6. _______
7. Inside the mall by the bookstore. 7. _______
8. Within the halls of ivy at Harvard University. 8. _______
9. From now on, I'll try harder. 9. _______
10. Given the seriousness of this illness. 10. _______
11. Since I've last seen you, I've changed jobs. 11. _______
12. Because of my headache, I'm not going. 12. _______
13. Beneath the ground, the worms are crawling. 13. _______
14. Before summer ends and fall begins. 14. _______
15. Like my brothers before me, I joined the Marines. 15. _______
16. Below the deck of the ship. 16. _______
17. Between the covers of some books, a good story waits. 17. _______
18. Into the abandoned house, the curious boys walked cautiously. 18. _______
19. By the dim light of the early morning sunrise. 19. _______
20. Outside on the window sill, a butterfly was perched. 20. _______
Parts of Speech, Run-On Sentences, Comma Splicing, and Fragments
Page 43
It was stated previously that a run-on sentence can be corrected by joining the two sentences
with a conjunction.
Example:
Run-on Sentence: The bear wandered into the Smith's yard Mrs. Smith screamed and ran.
Correction: The bear wandered into the Smith's yard, and Mrs. Smith screamed and ran.
Notice that there is a complete sentence on both the left and right side of the conjunction and.
-------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Sometimes a conjunction can be used to combine a fragment and a complete sentence. This type
of conjunction is called a subordinating conjunction.
A subordinating conjunction joins a fragment and a complete sentence.
One commonly used subordinating conjunction is the word if.
Beginning a sentence with the word IF
Examples:
1. Fragment: If I tell you to do something.
This is an incomplete thought. Any sentence that begins with an "if" part
needs a "then" part, even though the word "then" does not have to be
written. If it is not written, it is said to be implied or intended to be there.
Correction: If I tell you to do something, I mean it!
If I tell you to do something, then I mean it!
2. Fragment: If I'm not home by five o'clock.
This is an incomplete thought. What will happen if this person is not home
by five o'clock?
Correction: If I'm not home by five o'clock, put the roast in the oven to warm it up.
If I'm not home by five o'clock, then put the roast in the over to warm it up.
3. Fragment: If the verdict is guilty.
This is an incomplete thought. What will happen if the verdict is guilty?
Correction: If the verdict is guilty, John will be going to prison for a long time.
If the verdict is guilty, then John will be going to prison for a long time.
Every if part of a sentence needs a then part.
Notice that the if part contains the fragment, and the then part is a complete sentence.
Parts of Speech, Run-On Sentences, Comma Splicing, and Fragments
Page 44
Another name for a sentence is "an independent clause." It is called independent because
it can stand on its own and does not need any help.
Another name for a fragment is "a dependent clause." It is called dependent because it
cannot stand alone. By itself, it doesn't make sense. It needs help from an independent
clause to make sense.
The subordinating conjunctions when, after, and before all indicate time. Like fragments
that begin with if, fragments that begin with these words need an independent clause to
complete their meaning.
Examples:
When I get home (a fragment), I will wash the car (a sentence).
After the game (a fragment), we are all going out for pizza (a sentence).
Before you go (a fragment), please turn out all the lights and lock the door (a sentence).
A list of common subordinating conjunctions
Following is a list of common subordinating conjunctions.
.
after as soon as if provided until
although because if only rather than when
as before in order that since whenever
as if even just as supposing where
as long as even if now though whether
as much as even though once unless while
Be careful: if you use any of the above words to begin a sentence, make sure that the fragment
is followed by a comma and then a complete sentence.
Parts of Speech, Run-On Sentences, Comma Splicing, and Fragments
Page 45
Practice
Do the following groups of words represent a sentence or a fragment? Write s for sentence
and f for fragment.
1. Because of my love for children. 1. _______
2. Although I'm not rich. 2. _______
3. Since I got discharged from the army. 3. _______
4. Until we meet again, stay safe. 4. _______
5. As long as I'm healthy. 5. _______
6. Now that I'm back at school. 6. _______
7. Once I heard the bad news. 7. _______
8. Even if I can't be there, I'll be thinking of you. 8. _______
9. Just as I thought. 9. _______
10. Unless Jan completes the project, she will fail the class. 10. _______
11. While you were gone. 11. _______
12. Whenever I hear her voice. 12. _______
13. In order that I may better serve you. 13. _______
14. As much as I would like to, I can't. 14. ________
15. Even though the sun is shining. 15. _______
16. Whether you believe me or not, I'm telling the truth. 16. _______
17. As soon as I get my pay check, I'll pay you what I owe you. 17. _______
18. Rather than stay late at work, I'd rather go in early. 18. _______
19. Though I don't agree, it's your decision. 19. _______
20. Wherever you go, I will follow. 20. _______
Parts of Speech, Run-On Sentences, Comma Splicing, and Fragments
Page 46
Beginning a sentence with a verb that ends with the letters i-n-g often leads to writing fragments.
Examples:
1. Looking out over the ocean.
This fragment describes what someone is doing, but there is no subject, and the thought is
unfinished. Who is looking out over the ocean?
Correction:
Looking out over the ocean, John watched the sun set on the horizon.
2. Climbing up the tall ladder.
This fragment again describes what someone is doing. Who is climbing the ladder?
Correction:
Climbing up the tall ladder, Mark suddenly lost his balance.
Practice
Do the following groups of words represent a sentence or a fragment? Write s for sentence
and f for fragment.
1. Hearing a knock at the door. 1. _______
2. Waiting by the phone, I hoped Chris would call me. 2. _______
3. Speaking his mind, Larry later ended up apologizing because of it. 3. _______
4. Being angry about the events of the day. 4. _______
5. Answering a call for donors. 5. _______
6. Needing a ride, I called the Yellow Cab Company. 6. _______
7. Believing strongly in his own abilities. 7. _______
8. Driving while texting, Amy veered off the road and hit a tree. 8. _______
9. Judging from past experience. 9.________
10. Using a chain saw, I was able to remove the large fallen branch. 10. _______
11. Worrying so much, I had to call to see how Sam was. 11. _______
12. Walking home in the dark. 12. _______
Parts of Speech, Run-On Sentences, Comma Splicing, and Fragments
Page 47
Final Exam
1. For each of the following, write correct if the words represent sentences that are written
correctly and incorrect if the words represent sentences that are written incorrectly.
a. Rain is predicted for tonight I will need to bring an umbrella. a. ____________
b. Baseball is Joe's favorite sport. He is a Yankee's fan. b. ____________
c. Alice loves to watch movies, this is her favorite way to relax. c. ____________
d. Golden Retrievers are wonderful dogs; they have great personalities. d. ____________
e. Many senior citizens love to play golf, they try to improve their score. e. ____________
f. I bought a new air conditioner yesterday it was on sale for 25% off. f. ____________
g. Stephanie wants to become an architect. She loves to design homes. g. ____________
2. For each of the following, state whether the words represent a fragment or a sentence.
a. Not at all. a. ___________
b. The Golden Gate Bridge in San Francisco. b. ___________
c. I am finished. c. ___________
d. Red, blue, yellow, orange, white, green, and pink. d. ___________
e. Get out of here! e. ___________
f. High up in the tree out at the end of the longest branch. f. ___________
g. Beneath the front porch steps, the dog slept peacefully. g. ___________
h. Fierce pounding rain. h. ___________
i. Made the varsity basketball team this year. i. ____________
j. During the winter, I love to ski. j. ____________
k. Down at the docks, the boats are securely tied. k. ____________
l. Beneath the beach umbrella on the sand. l. ____________
m. Unless we hear from you, we will worry. m. ____________
n. While you were away. n. ____________
o. Using my best judgment. o. ____________
p. Realizing I was lost, I called for help from my cell phone. p. ____________
q. If I have to ask you one more time to take out the trash. q. ____________
3. Write either a or an before each of the words shown below.
a. _____ baby b. _____ apple c. _____ hour
d. _____ expert e. _____ university f. _____ battery
4. In the spaces provided, write the simple subject and the verb in each of the sentences below.
Subject Verb
a. The cat sleeps most of the day. _______________ _______________
b. Jack installed new windows in his house. _______________ _______________
Parts of Speech, Run-On Sentences, Comma Splicing, and Fragments
Page 48
5. State whether each of the following is a true or false statement.
_____ a. Every sentence must have a subject.
_____ b. The sentence, "Help your sister carry the groceries." has no subject.
_____ c. An imperative sentence gives a command or makes a request.
_____ d. A sentence must have a subject and a predicate and express a complete thought.
_____ e. A fragment is a short sentence.
_____ f. The subject of a sentence is usually a noun or a pronoun.
_____ g. Every predicate must contain a verb.
_____ h. Every sentence must have a predicate.
_____ i. The subject of a sentence is often found in a prepositional phrase.
_____ j. An exclamatory sentence asks a question.
_____ k. It is okay to connect two sentences with a comma.
_____ l. Connecting two sentences with a comma is called comma splicing.
_____ m. What part of speech a word is depends on how the word is used in a sentence.
_____ n. An interrogative sentence always expresses strong emotion.
_____ o. A verb often tells what the subject of a sentence is doing, has done, or will do.
_____ p. Exclamation points should be used frequently when writing.
_____ q. Most sentences are declarative and end with a period.
_____ r. Two sentences run together without any punctuation between them is
called a run-on sentence.
Given the sentence, "Ouch! She saw the yellow bees quickly sting Frank and Bob on their legs,"
match each of the words on the left with the parts of speech shown at the right by writing the
appropriate letter in the space provided.
_____ 6. Ouch! a. noun
_____ 7. She b. preposition
_____ 8. the c. adverb
_____ 9. yellow d. article
_____ 10. bees e. conjunction
_____ 11. quickly f. adjective
_____ 12. sting g. pronoun
_____ 13. and h. interjection
_____ 14. on i. verb
15. The following sentence is not correct. Show three different ways to correct it.
The antique car collector looked at my 1948 Ford then he bought it.
a. ________________________________________________________________________
b. ________________________________________________________________________
c. ________________________________________________________________________
Parts of Speech, Run-On Sentences, Comma Splicing, and Fragments
Page 49
ANSWERS
Page 4 Page 8
---------------------------------------------------- ----------------------------------------------------
Persons Places Things Ideas 1. an 14. an 27. a
astronaut freeway umbrella wealth 2. a 15. a 28. a
father airport canoe hunger 3. a 16. an 29. a
niece kitchen iPad anger 4. an 17. a 30. an
lawyer theater calendar truth 5. a 18. an 31. a
queen park DVD love 6. an 19. a 32. an
landscaper island table violence 7. a 20. a 33. a
senator cemetery watch joy 8. an 21. a 34. a
(Order of answers in columns may vary.) 9. a 22. an 35. an
10. an 23. a 36. a
Page 5 11. an 24. a 37. an
--------------------------------------------------- 12. an 25. a 38. a
1. automobile Toyota 13. a 26. an 39. a
2. ocean Atlantic
3. team Chicago White Sox Page 9
4. song God Bless America ----------------------------------------------------
5. university Harvard 1. a
6. day Tuesday 2. an
7. horse Thoroughbred 3. a
8. actor Tom Cruise 4. a
9. movie Titanic 5. an
10. president Abraham Lincoln 6. a
Page 6 Page 11
--------------------------------------------------- ----------------------------------------------------
1. ice-axe 1. I 16. theirs
2. post office 2. We 17. She
3. grandmother 3. me 18. Their
4. secondhand 4. us 19. them
5. Air Force 5. mine 20. no one
6. database 6. Our 21. hers
7. half sister 7. My 22. It
8. water-bottle 8. ours 23. Its
9. fireflies 9. You 24. anyone
10. Paper-clips 10. yours 25. yourselves
11. He 26. herself
12. your 27. Everyone
13. They 28. Several
14. his 29. anybody
15. him (continued on next page)
Parts of Speech, Run-On Sentences, Comma Splicing, and Fragments
Page 50
Page 11 (Continued.) Page 16
---------------------------------------------------- ----------------------------------------------------
30. Someone 1. am
31. Nobody 2. can be
32. both 3. stays
33. Few 4. was
34. Somebody 5. could be
6. grows
Page 12 7. have been
---------------------------------------------------- 8. smell
1. That 9. will be
2. whom 10. looked
3. Those 11. should have been
4. What 12. was
5. Who 13. appears
6. This 14. were
7. These 15. will be
8. Which 16. had been
9. Whose 17. is being
18. has been
Page 14
---------------------------------------------------- Page 18
Subject Action Verb ----------------------------------------------------
1. The deer run 1. fragment
2. Nancy danced 2. fragment
3. The birds chirp 3. sentence
4. The baby cried 4. fragment
5. Everyone sings 5. sentence
6. I love 6. sentence
7. The boy fell 7. fragment
8. Dad built 8. fragment
9. My son plays 9. fragment
10. Mom cooked 10. sentence
11. The shark swam 11. fragment
12. The horse jumped 12. fragment
13. Jane felt 13. sentence
14. I sent 14. fragment
15. The woman stumbled 15. sentence
16. Laura doubts 16. sentence
17. She studies 17. fragment
18. I ate 18. sentence
19. fragment
Parts of Speech, Run-On Sentences, Comma Splicing, and Fragments
Page 51
Page 20 Page 26
---------------------------------------------------------- ------------------------------------------------------
1. Larry's leather jacket jacket 1. verb shows action
2. The John Deere tractor tractor 2. adjective describes ship
3. Bob's trailer truck truck 3. verb shows action
4. The young pilot pilot 4. noun names a person
5. Mr. Johnson's class class 5. verb shows action
6. Sixty-two people people 6. adjective describes idea
7. Two young girls girls 7. Pronoun takes the place of a noun
8. Three wild turkeys turkeys 8. noun names an idea
9. verb shows action
Page 21 10. adjective describes blanket
----------------------------------------------------------
1. is still his favorite is Page 28
2. does a great job does ----------------------------------------------------------
3. overturned on the highway overturned 1. beautifully
4. flew his helicopter over the city flew 2. swiftly
5. went on a field trip went 3. excitedly
6. entered the bicycle race entered 4. too
7. sold lemonade on the corner sold 5. very
8. walked down a country road walked 6. carefully
7. cleverly
Page 23 8. easily
---------------------------------------------------------- 9. unusually
1. ? (question mark) interrogative 10. always
2. . (period) declarative 11. slightly
3. ? (question mark) interrogative 12. remarkably
4. ! (exclamation mark) exclamatory 13. angrily
5. . (period) imperative 14. terribly
6. . (period) declarative 15. there
7. . (period) imperative 16. quite
8. ? (question mark) interrogative 17. extremely
9. ! (exclamation mark) exclamatory 18. seriously
10. ? (question mark) interrogative
Page 25
----------------------------------------------------------
1. big 8. black 15. white
2. dark 9. Few 16. glad
3. Several 10. fifty 17. sore
4. tasty 11. great 18. cold
5. two 12. pepperoni
6. Many 13. happy
7. beautiful 14. small
Parts of Speech, Run-On Sentences, Comma Splicing, and Fragments
Page 52
Page 30
----------------------------------------------------------
1. It's a beautiful summer day, and we're off to the beach.
2. The meeting starts at 7:00 p.m., and you need to be on time.
3. I would like to go to school today, but I'm feeling too sick.
4. Alice would love to buy a new car, but she can't afford the payments.
5. This jacket is so old and worn out, yet it remains my favorite.
6. I'll have to study, so I can pass algebra.
7. Bob yelled at the dog, for it was digging holes in the yard.
8. Do your homework, or you can't watch T.V.
9. Emily does not want to go shopping, nor does she want to see a movie.
Page 34
----------------------------------------------------------
Simple Subject
1. The boys in the back of the room were texting. boys
2. Behind the parade strolled clowns holding red balloons. clowns
3. Two of the New England Patriots are being traded this year. Two
4. There are storm clouds on the horizon. clouds
5. What are the consequences of getting a speeding ticket? consequences
6. When will you come to visit me again? you
7. Is the store on the corner open until 11:00 p.m.? store
8. Why is that airplane flying so low? airplane
9. According to the weather forecast, a hurricane is coming. hurricane
10. Instead of going skiing, we could go ice skating. we
11. Due to a bad economy, many people are unemployed. people
12. Because of reduced rates, many joined the health club. many
13. Down in the meadow, the birds chirped. birds
14. In order to succeed, one needs to work hard. one
15. Over the river and through the woods to Grandmother's we
house we go.
Page 35
----------------------------------------------------------
1. I bought a red canoe. I can't wait to use it on the lake.
2. The police saw the robber exit the store. They chased him.
3. Cooking is Alice's favorite activity. She is an expert cook.
4. A strange dog chased my cat. The cat ran up a tree to get away.
5. After the storm, a rainbow appeared. The air smelled fresh and clean.
6. There was an accident on the freeway. Traffic was backed up for miles.
7. Jim buys lottery tickets every week. He has never won a thing.
Parts of Speech, Run-On Sentences, Comma Splicing, and Fragments
Page 53
Page 36
----------------------------------------------------------
1. The quarterback threw the ball, and the wide receiver caught it easily.
2. We played Monopoly last night, and Matt beat everyone.
3. We lost power, and all the food in the refrigerator spoiled.
4. The Titanic sank on April 15, 1912, and more than 1,500 people lost their lives.
5. The seagull perched on the rock for awhile, and then it took off and flew away.
6. I want to visit the Grand Canyon, and my plan is to go there next summer.
7. My favorite meal is spaghetti and meatballs, and I make it every Sunday.
Page 37
----------------------------------------------------------
1. Jupiter is the largest planet in our solar system; it can be seen by the naked eye.
2. The Nobel Peace Prize is awarded every year; the winner receives over a million dollars.
3. My apple pie won the contest; this was the second year in a row that I got the blue ribbon.
4. Joe swims thirty laps a day at the pool; he is a physical fitness instructor.
5. Inflation is causing prices to rise; people are buying less these days at the grocery store.
6. Owls are solitary birds that are active at night; a group of owls is called a parliament.
7. A piece of paper cannot be folded in half more than eight times; is this true?
Page 39
----------------------------------------------------------
1. The dog bit the cat's tail. The cat meowed loudly.
The dog bit the cat's tail, and the cat meowed loudly.
The dog bit the cat's tail; the cat meowed loudly.
2. The left side of a ship is called port side. The right side is called starboard.
The left side of a ship is called port side, and the right side is called starboard.
The left side of a ship is called port side; the right side is called starboard.
3. A major 7.9 earthquake hit San Francisco in 1906. Over 3,000 people died.
A major 7.9 earthquake hit San Francisco in 1906, and over 3,000 people died.
A major 7.9 earthquake hit San Francisco in 1906; over 3,000 people died.
4. Cherokee Indians were forced to move to Oklahoma. Many died on the Trail of Tears.
Cherokee Indians were forced to move to Oklahoma, and many died on the Trail of Tears.
Cherokee Indians were forced to move to Oklahoma; many died on the Trail of Tears.
5. A crock-pot is a handy cooking device. It can produce excellent meals.
A crock-pot is a handy cooking device, and it can produce excellent meals.
A crock-pot is a handy cooking device; it can produce excellent meals.
6. Every student of geometry knows Pythagoras. A theorem is named after him.
Every student of geometry knows Pythagoras, and a theorem is named after him.
Every student of geometry knows Pythagoras; a theorem is named after him.
7. Rabies is a deadly viral infection. It is spread through the bite of an infected animal.
Rabies is a deadly viral infection, and it is spread through the bite of an infected animal.
Rabies is a deadly viral infection; it is spread through the bite of an infected animal.
Parts of Speech, Run-On Sentences, Comma Splicing, and Fragments
Page 54
Page 42 Page 47 48 Final Exam
---------------------------------------------------------- ----------------------------------------------------------
1. fragment 11. sentence 1. a. incorrect
2. sentence 12. sentence b. correct
3. sentence 13. sentence c. incorrect
4. fragment 14. fragment d. correct
5. fragment 15. sentence e. incorrect
6. sentence 16. fragment f. incorrect
7. fragment 17. sentence g. correct
8. fragment 18. sentence 2. a. Fragment
9. sentence 19. fragment b. Fragment
10. fragment 20. sentence c. Sentence
d. Fragment
Page 45 e. Sentence
---------------------------------------------------------- f. Fragment
1. fragment 11. fragment g. Sentence
2. fragment 12. fragment h. Fragment
3. fragment 13. fragment i. Fragment
4. sentence 14. sentence j. Sentence
5. fragment 15. fragment k. Sentence
6. fragment 16. sentence l. Fragment
7. fragment 17. sentence m. Sentence
8. sentence 18. sentence n. Fragment
9. fragment 19. sentence o. Fragment
10. sentence 20. sentence p. Sentence
q. Fragment
Page 46 3. a. a baby b. an apple c. an hour
--------------------------------------------------------- d. an expert e. a university f. a battery
1. fragment 4. Subject Verb
2. sentence a. cat sleeps
3. sentence b. Jack installed
4. fragment
5. fragment
6. sentence
7. fragment
8. sentence
9. fragment
10. sentence
11. sentence
12. fragment
Parts of Speech, Run-On Sentences, Comma Splicing, and Fragments
Page 55
Page 47 48 Final Exam (continued)
----------------------------------------------------------
5. a. True
b. False
c. True
d. True
e. False
f. True
g. True
h. True
i. False
j. False
k. False
l. True
m. True
n. False
o. True
p. False
q. True
r. True
6. h
7. g
8. d
9. f
10. a
11. c
12. i
13. e
14. b
15. a. The antique car collector looked at my 1948 Ford. Then he bought it.
b. The antique car collector looked at my 1948 Ford, and then he bought it.
c. The antique car collector looked at my 1948 Ford; then he bought it.