Comma splices occur when two independent clauses (sentences that can stand alone) are joined into one sentence with only a comma.

Comma Splice

Both sections (clauses) of the sentence can stand alone (independent) even though the second does not have a pronoun.

This is usually considered grammatically incorrect, or at least an error in style.

A comma by itself usually is not enough and should is accompanied by a coordinating conjunction. In some cases, a semicolon (;) may be used instead of a comma, but both sentences remain seperate so a coordinating conjunction is not used.

Preventing Comma SplicesEdit

Main Article: Coordinating Conjunctions

Either separate the sentences with a period or add coordinating conjuctions, which are words that link two parts of a sentence. All of the conjunctions are summed up using this acronym, FANBOY:

  • For
  • And
  • Nor
  • But
  • Or
  • Yet

An older acronym is "andbutornorfor" but it does not include yet.


A comma splice (bad style, usually considered incorrect!):

  • "I decided to order a hamburger, the waitress apologetically told me that they ran out of hamburger buns."

To correct the sentence, either seperate the sentence into two or completely join the sentences using a conjunction:

  • "I decided to order a hamburger. The waitress apologetically tole me that they ran out of hamburger buns."
  • "I decided to order a hamburger, but the waitress apologetically told me that they ran out of hamburger buns."

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