Independent Clause

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What Is an Independent Clause? (with Examples)

An independent clause is a clause that can stand alone as a sentence (i.e., it expresses a complete thought).

An independent clause, like all clauses, has a subject and verb.

When there are no dependent clauses in the same sentence as an independent clause, the independent clause is a simple sentence. For example:

Examples of Independent Clauses

Here are some examples of independent clauses (shaded). Notice how they could stand alone as sentences. (This is the difference between an independent clause and a dependent clause.)

USE A COMMA BEFORE A CONJUNCTION THAT JOINS TWO INDEPENDENT CLAUSES

Writers are often unsure whether to use a comma before a coordinate conjunction (i.e., a word like and and but). You should use a comma before a coordinate conjunction that joins two independent clauses. For example: .

THE MAIN TYPES OF SENTENCE

A sentence with two or more independent clauses is called a compound sentence. Here are the basic types of sentence with the independent clauses shaded:

A Quick Test



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See Also

What is a clause? What is a sentence? What is the subject of a sentence? What are verbs? What is a dependent clause? What is a simple sentence? What is a complex sentence? What is a compound sentence? What are coordinate conjunctions?