English Grammar Lessons

  Biscuit Trail: Home  Glossary of Grammatical Terms  Conjunctive Adverbs

Conjunctive Adverbs - Glossary of Terms

Conjunctive Adverbs

A conjunctive adverb is used to join two simple sentences (or clauses).  The following can all be used as conjunctive adverbs:


also, consequently, furthermore, however, incidentally, indeed, likewise, meanwhile, nevertheless, nonetheless and therefore

When used to join two sentences, a conjunctive adverb must be preceded by a semicolon and not a comma.  (This is a common mistake - particularly with however.)  Conjunctive adverbs are also known as "transitional phrases".


The instructor's English is poor; consequently, they all failed the exam.
I know Mr Evans was drunk; however, I am not responsible for his actions.

Interactive example:
You failed to meet the deadline; consequently, the deal is off. [show me the conjunctive adverb]
The word "however" nearly always starts a sentence.  Occasionally, it can be preceded by a semicolon (when used as a conjunctive adverb). Preceding it with a comma and writing a new sentence is a very common mistake.

I normally like toffees, however, I dislike these ones.
Associated pages:
What are adverbs?
Semicolons before transitional phrases
Glossary of grammatical terms

Grammar Monster | Copyright Registration Number: 226604 | All rights reserved