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Coordinating and Correlative Conjuctions

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A conjunction is a word that is used to connect words, phrases, or clauses.
Adverbs can also be used to link related ideas. When adverbs are used in this way, they are called conjunctive adverbs.

Coordinating Conjunction

A coordinating conjunction is a word that functions individually to connect sentence parts.

To "coordinate" implies ranking equal ideas.

Medical insurance is expensive, but dental insurance is prohibitive.

Some of the Coordinating Conjunctions are :

and, but, nor, or, for, so, yet

How to Use Coordinating Conjunctions

As a general rule,
use and, but, nor, or or to connect matching words, phrases, or clauses;
use for or so to connect subordinate or independent clauses rather than individual words.

The conjunctions have different meanings as well:

and shows connection;
but, nor, and yet show contrast;
or shows choice;
so indicates result;
for shows causality.


And Shows Connection:

1) The children cleaned up quickly and quietly.

But, Nor, and Yet Show Contrast:

2) The living room was extremely elegant but surprisingly comfortable.

3) My supervisor will never give us half days on Friday, nor will she agree to our other demands.

4) She took good care of the houseplant, yet it wilted and lost its leaves anyway.

Or Shows Choice:

5) You can have the spaghetti and meatballs or the veal and peppers.

So Shows Result:

6) We missed the dinner party, so we ended up eating peanut butter and jelly sandwiches.

For Shows Causality:

7) Laura stayed in the office late all week, for she had to finish the project by Friday.

Correlative Conjunctions

Correlative conjunctions always work in pairs to connect words, phrases, or clauses.

Some of the Correlative Conjunctions are :

both ... and, neither ... nor, whether ... or, either ... or, not only ... but also, not ... but


1) Both the bank and the post office are closed on National holidays.

2) The envelopes are neither in the drawer nor in the cabinet.

3) Whether you agree to implement my plan or not, you have to concede that it has merit.

4) Either you agree to ratify our contract now, or we will have to once again return to the bargaining table.

5) Not only the children but also the adults were captivated by the dancing bears at the circus.

6) Not the renters but the homeowners were most deeply affected by the recent change in tax laws.

Sample Usage

As mentioned above.

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