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 Post subject: comma followed by an and
PostPosted: Sun Aug 21, 2016 2:16 pm 
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Joined: Thu Dec 11, 2014 9:47 am
Posts: 108
Hi all

Another punctuation question, please help.

Can there be a comma before a "and" ? I am reading mixed information about this. If anybody of you have a good understanding and can share, it shall help.

Thanks in advance.


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PostPosted: Sun Aug 21, 2016 3:05 pm 
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Joined: Mon Mar 03, 2014 10:24 pm
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Location: Petts Wood, Bromley, Kent
Some like what is known as the 'Oxford comma', the comma before the last 'and' in a sentence, others don't, hence your mixed reviews. I tend to use it where I feel it enhances the pace of the sentence but some may consider that rather old fashioned now. https://www.grammarly.com/blog/what-is- ... /?AT3697=1


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PostPosted: Sun Aug 21, 2016 4:00 pm 
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Joined: Thu Dec 11, 2014 9:47 am
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Well, my daughter is under the impression that there should not be a comma with an and, thus she marked it as a punctuation mistake.

I kind of agree.

However, in the CGP 10mins English book it has been clearly allowed.

The sentence was:
"Despite the road closure, it's still possible to go out. Put on some suitable shoes (such as walking boots), leave in good time, and walk rather than drive."

I am not sure what to tell my daughter if this comes up in the exam!


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PostPosted: Sun Aug 21, 2016 5:30 pm 
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Joined: Thu Nov 22, 2007 10:30 am
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Location: Warwickshire
It's generally felt that the Oxford comma is a bit old fashioned these days, hence I guess it's probably safer not to use it - though I'm not in education so others are probably better qualified to answer!

There are times when it's needed for clarity, however. The Guardian Style Guide has a good example:

https://www.theguardian.com/guardian-ob ... le-guide-o

You'll need to scroll down to 'Oxford comma' to see it!


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PostPosted: Sun Aug 21, 2016 8:54 pm 
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Joined: Sat Mar 06, 2010 11:39 pm
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Ooh, thank you for that link, Warks mum.


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PostPosted: Mon Aug 22, 2016 8:08 am 
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Joined: Wed Sep 02, 2015 9:56 am
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Sorry WorkingMom, did I put you onto this book with my comments on your grammar post?

I think I'll go back to asking the questions, rather than trying to answer them :)

I have only admiration for all those primary teachers trying to navigate this stuff.


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PostPosted: Sat Nov 05, 2016 10:37 pm 
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Joined: Sat Nov 05, 2016 10:18 pm
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A comma is, or so I believe, necessary if the second clause in the sentence has a different subject to the first.

For example:

Anna took off her jacket and threw it on the floor. (No comma needed, as the subject Anna governs both verbs)

Anna took off her jacket, and her brother hung it up for her. (A comma is needed as there is a different subject for each of the two verbs)

At least I think that is right. It looks and feels right, but I'll go and check it now!


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