English Knowledge - SPLessons


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SPLessons 5 Steps, 3 Clicks
5 Steps - 3 Clicks



shape Introduction

Words which are used to join the various other words and phrases of the sentence are called Conjunctions. Writing various sentences can confuse the reader reading the sentence. So conjunctions help in avoiding that confusion.
Conjunctions are also called linking words. For example: and, or, but, because, for, nor, so yet etc.
  • Shilpa and Sheena are going to the market.
  • Daughter is taking the glass of milk for her brother.
  • The results are not out yet.

The image below shows some more examples of conjunctions.

shape Types

Types of Conjunctions:
There are three main categories of conjunctions which are coordinating conjunctions, subordinating conjunctions and correlative conjunctions.

1. Coordinating Conjunctions: Words that are used to join two or more words, phrases and clauses are called Coordinating Conjunctions. There are only seven coordinating conjunctions used. These are for, and, nor, but, or, yet, so. These can be remembered with a mnemonic i.e. F (for) A (and) N (nor) B (but) O (or) Y (yet).
For example:
  • I would have a pizza for dinner.
  • Ben and Tim are brothers.
  • Jenny did not have the time but she managed to finish the assignment.
  • The date sheet for boards is not out yet.

Putting a coma after the use of Coordinating Conjunctions is not necessary but it should be used when two or more things or people are being talked about.
Some more examples of the coordinating conjunctions are shown in the image below.

The table below shows coordinating conjunctions connecting word, phrases and clauses.
Linking Individual Words Linking Phrases Linking Clauses
Pallavi, Surbhi and Tina decided to meet at the ground. The head or his junior from Egypt will inform you the deadline of the report. You must try hard or you won’t clear the test.
It is a small but a very neat room. Her assistance or manager would answer the call. They went to the museum and had amazing day.
John and George were up all night practicing guitar. I wanted to go to the beach or for a long walk. I liked the new phone but could not afford to buy it.

2. Subordinating Conjunctions: The words which help in linking two groups of words by making them into one clause are called Subordinating Conjunctions. These conjunctions basically join a subordinate clause and a main clause.
For example:
  • You will clear the exam provided that you study hard for it.
  • He helps his friends whenever they need it.
  • It makes me sad when you cry.
  • If you do not wear a raincoat, you will get ill.
  • He did not tell me the secret even when he was forced.
  • All the stores had offer discounts because of the festive season.

The table below shows some more examples of Subordinating Clauses.
after if though
although In order that unless
as Now that until
because once when
before since whenever
Even if So that where
Even though than wherever
how that while

Following are some examples of Subordinating Conjunctions.

Correlative Conjunctions: Conjunctions which are made up of two words and help in linking the words, phrases and clauses which have supportive relationship are called Correlative Conjunctions. Common correlative conjunctions which are used are either-or, neither-nor, whether-or, both-and, not only-but also etc.
  • He may either purchase a car or a flat for his family.
  • Both blue and black are my favorite colors.
  • She is not only interested in athletics but also dancing.
  • Neither Suresh nor Ramesh is to be blamed.
  • She will either take cold drink or a cup of coffee.

The table below shows some more examples of Correlative Conjunctions.
both…and just as…so
either…or the…the
neither…nor as…as
not only…but also as much…as
so…as no sooner…than
whether…or rather…than

Correlative conjunctions have been further exemplified through the below table.
Correlative Conjunctions Examples
Either...or You either do your work or prepare for a trip to the office.
not only...but also Not only is he handsome, but he is also brilliant.
neither...nor Neither the basketball team nor the football team is doing well.
both...and Both the cross country team and the swimming team are doing well.
whether...or Whether you stay or go is your decision.
just as...so Just as many Americans love football, so many Canadians love ice hockey.
Sl.No Conjuctions of Time Conjuctions of Order Conjuctions of Cause and effect
1. before next because
2. after lastly since
3. until firstly as
4. since before for
5. when in addition yet
6. while finally therefore
7. Finally
8. at the same time
Ex: Finish the Project while you have time. Leila doesn't need anew bag and secondly, she doesn't want one. I bought the book because I need it.

shape Rules

Rule 1: When in a sentence ‘and’ is being used, it should always be preceded by the conjunction ‘both’.
For example:
  • She looks beautiful in both red and pink dress.
  • He will be studying both English and Hindi as his main subjects.

Rule 2: For comparing two or more things in sentence conjunctions ‘as-as’ and ‘so-as’ is used. In negative sentences, conjunction ‘so…as’ is used where as in affirmative sentences and negative sentences conjunction ‘as…as’ can be used.
For example:
  • You do not sing so well as your sister.
  • He is as good as the rest of his classmates.

Rule 3: In a sentence when ‘although’ or ‘though’ is used it should be followed by a coma (,) or a yet.
For example:
  • Though he tried hard, he still could not finish the project on time.
  • Although the notes are very much, still the students copy them to study for the exams.

Rule 4: While writing, correct pair of words, like no sooner….than, hardly…. when, or before, scarcely.. when or before, barely…. when or before, should be used always.
For example:
  • No sooner did I step out then it started to rain.
  • Hardly had I stepped out of my bed before having lunch.
  • Barely had he got his new phone before it was stolen.

Do not use negative words like no, never, not with hardly, scarcely and barely because these are also negative words.
Rule 5: When using lest in a sentence, always remember that should or first form of verb should come after it.
For example:
  • Take an umbrella with you lest it should rain.

Rule 6: Unless and until are negative terms and are time oriented and action oriented respectively. Since these words are negatives so do not use words like no, never, not with these words.
For example:
  • Wait here until your parents work.
  • Unless you study hard, you will not succeed in life.

Rule 7: While using doubt and doubtful in negative sentences, it is followed by if and whether. Where as in interrogative sentences, that is preceded by doubt or doubtful.
For example:
  • I doubt if they will attend the wedding ceremony. (This is a negative sentence.)
  • I do not doubt that he will be able to climb up the rope. (This is an affirmative sentence.)

Rule 8: The correct pairing is ‘not only…but also’. Words being used other than these are wrong pair of words.
For example:
  • He let down not only his parents but also his best friend.

Rule 9: “And” is always preceded by between in order to frame the sentence, in the same manner “To” is always followed by from, when used in a sentence.
For example:
  • You have to choose between politics and geography.
  • My sister keeps dancing from morning to evening.

Rule 10: In a sentence when more than two things or persons are used, ‘none of’ is used. ‘Neither of’ means ‘none of the two’ in other sense.
For example:
  • None of his relatives came forward to help his family.

When more than two persons or things are used, ‘one of’ is used. ‘Either of’ means ‘one of the two’ in other words.
For example:
  • One of your siblings is responsible for the damage done to the car.

Rule 11: While writing, people generally tend to use the phrase ‘seldom or ever’ which is a wrong phrase. Use the correct phrase which is ‘seldom or never’.
For example:
  • The local channel seldom or never telecasts good movies.

Rule 12: While using rather or other in a sentence, conjunction ‘than’ should be placed after them.
For examples:
  • She has no other choice than to go for higher education.
  • I would rather read a novel than go and party in a club.

Rules for using comas in coordinating conjunctions:
1. When a coordinating conjunction links two independent clauses, put a coma before the coordinating conjunction.
For example:
  • Rita walked her dog, so she got the loaf of bread.
  • I want to go see the play, but my brother has my scooter.
  • Alia loves parrots, yet she does not want one in her own house.

2. When a coordinating conjunction links two items, no need to use a coma in those cases.
For example:
  • My father likes guavas and mangoes.
  • My sister is old but foolish.

3. The use of coma is optional when a coordinating conjunction is used with a list of items i.e. three or more numbers.
For example:
  • She is cooking dal, making chapattis, listening to songs and talking to mother in the kitchen. (This was without the coma.)
  • She is cooking dal, making chapattis, listening to songs, and talking to mother in the kitchen. (This was with the use of coma.)

The image below shows some more rules regarding conjunctions.

The exemplified table for coma rules is as under.
Rules Special Words Sentences
Rule 1: Subordinate Conjunctions If, when, because, although and all the same words. Because I like teaching, I am considering a teaching career.
Rule 2: Coordinate Cconjunctions For, although, nor, but, or, yet, so I suggested movie, but everyone else wanted a disco night.
Rule 3: Interrupters Who and which Tina who joined the team just now, will be the captain next year.

shape Errors

Following are some errors which are usually committed by people while using Conjunctions.
Incorrect: By the time we reached the venue then everybody was left.
Correct: By the time we reached the venue, everybody had left.
Incorrect: The teacher asked me that why I was late.
Correct: The teacher asked me why I was late.
Incorrect: No sooner she has reached the railway station the train left.
Correct: No sooner did she reach the railway station than the train left.
Incorrect: Not only he insulted her but also slapped her.
Correct: Not only did he insult her but he also slapped her.
Incorrect: unless you do not study, you will never clear the test.
Correct: Unless you try, you will never clear the test.
Incorrect: There is no such novel which you told me.
Correct: There is no such novel as you told me.
Incorrect: my friend suggested me certain genres such that fantasy fiction, thriller and non-fiction.
Correct: My friend suggested my certain genres like fantasy fiction, thriller and non-fiction.
Hope that the article is clear to you and now you can enjoy using conjunctions confidently in day 2 day life.