Co-ordinating Conjunctions

Conjunctions are joining words. They join words, phrases,  and clauses. Some conjunctions can join words and phrases and clauses:

♦ Taylor Swift is beautiful and talented.  ∼  The conjunction and is joining the words ‘beautiful’ & ‘talented’.

♦ You can read about Taylor Swift on her website, or on Wikipedia, or on a post on this blog.  ∼  The conjunction or is joining the phrases ‘on her website’ & ‘on Wikipedia’ & ‘on a post on this blog’.

Co-ordinating Conjunctions

Co-ordinating Conjunctions connect sentences (independent clauses). Think of co-ordinating as balancing, like the two stones in the picture above. You can see two separate, independent stones, which are equal, but not the same. The object in the middle is balancing the stones. Co-ordinating Conjunctions are the objects (words) which balance two sentences. When two or more sentences are connected by Co-ordinating Conjunctions, they are called COMPOUND SENTENCES. You can remember the seven co-ordinating conjunctions by the ACRONYM FANBOYS:

F for     Aand     Nnor     Bbut     Oor     Yyet     Sso

∗ The co-ordinating conjunctions for, nor, and yet are not used as often as the others. For is rarely used in conversation, being more suited to literary writing.

♦ Romeo would do anything for Juliet.                        He loved her more than life itself.

⇒Romeo would do anything for Juliet,         for        he loved her more than life itself.

♦ Taylor Swift has a marvellous singing voice.            She wrote many of her  hit songs.

⇒Taylor Swift has a marvellous singing voice, and she wrote many of her hit songs.

♦ When you’re reading, you shouldn’t translate                                                               every unknown word.                                                              You shouldn’t read too slowly. 

⇒ When you’re reading, you shouldn’t translate,   nor   should you read too slowly.

♦ Learning English isn’t always easy.                                    It can be fun.

⇒ Learning English isn’t always easy,             but            it can be fun.

♦ You need to do revision within 24 hours.                         You’ll forget up to 70%.

 ⇒ You need to do revision within 24 hours,     or             you’ll forget up to 70%.

♦ Students say they want to improve.                                   They forget to do revision.

⇒ Students say they want to improve ,               yet          they forget to do revision.

♦   Hiro is a committed and talented student.                     He will be successful in life.

⇒ Hiro is a committed and talented student,     so           he will be successful in life.

 **********************

 ∗ Remember that these words (For, And, Nor, But, Or, Yet, and So) are used in other ways. They are not always c0-ordinating conjunctions:

I haven’t finished writing this post yet. ‘Yet’ is not joining two clauses. Also, it does not have the meaning ‘but’. It is not a co-ordinating conjunction in this sentence.

I love travelling; so does my husband. ‘So’ does not have the meaning ‘result’. It is not a co-ordinating conjunction in this sentence.

Romeo would do anything for Juliet. ‘For’ is not joining two clauses. Also, it does not have the meaning ‘because’. It is not a co-ordinating conjunction in this sentence.

Click here for more information.   Click here for practice exercises.

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This entry was posted in Grammar, Intermediate (Level 4), Pre-Intermediate (Level 3), Upper Intermediate (Level 5) and tagged , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

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