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Help with placing a comma?





Ghost900
I don't know if this is a good place to post this but couldn't find anything better.

Where do you add a comma in an instance like this?

(e.g. This pie was made by my brother, John)
(e.g. I was posting on Frihost while my older sister, Sarah was cooking)

Should there be a comma after brother and before the name?
TomS
1. e.g. This pie was made by my brother, John

Depends on who John is. Your brother? Or the person, you are talking to?

If it's your brother, there's no need for a comma. It's even misleading.
If you are talking to a John. There has to be a comma after "brother".

2. There's no need for a comma after sister. The acting person is "my older sister Sarah".
I'd say: "I was posting on Frihost, while my older sister Sarah was cooking".
Ghost900
Thanks, John is my brother in the example so then I don't want the commas.

Thanks TomS Very Happy
TomS
You're welcome.
Always to glad to be helpful Smile
Btw. The plural of comma is commata Wink
Diablosblizz
I would probably write this for the second example:

"I was posting on Frihost while my older sister, Sarah, was cooking."

Although I am not quite sure if that is grammatically correctly.
AftershockVibe
Diablosblizz wrote:
I would probably write this for the second example:

"I was posting on Frihost while my older sister, Sarah, was cooking."

Although I am not quite sure if that is grammatically correctly.



I agree with this version. You could also use brackets like so...
"I was posting on Frihost while my older sister (Sarah) was cooking."
Arty
I don't think the second sentence needs any commas.
TomS
Arty wrote:
I don't think the second sentence needs any commas.


Agreed. You could use those dashes or brackets.

"I was posting on Frihost while my older sister - her name is Sarah - was cooking."
"I was posting on Frihost while my older sister (her name is Sarah) was cooking."

The subject is "my sister" or "my sister Sarah" oder "my older sister Sarah". No need for a comma.

But: "I was posting in Frihost while my sister Sarah, who is older than me, was cooking."
Or: "I was posting on Frihost while my older sister, whose name is Sarah, was cooking."
mesianica
Comma is very important:

Quote:
A comma ( , ) is a punctuation mark. It has the same shape as an apostrophe or single closing quotation mark in many typefaces, but it differs from them in being placed on the baseline of the text. Some typefaces render it as a small line, slightly curved or straight, or with the appearance of a small filled-in number 9.

The comma is used in many contexts and languages, principally for separating things. According to the Oxford English Dictionary, the word comma comes directly from the Greek komma (κόμμα), which means something cut off or a short clause.

In the 3rd century BC, Aristophanes of Byzantium invented a system of single dots (distinctiones) that separated verses (colometry) and indicated the amount of breath needed to complete each fragment of text when reading aloud (not to comply with rules of grammar, which were not applied to punctuation marks until much later). The different lengths were signified by a dot at the bottom, middle, or top of the line. For a short passage (a komma), a media distinctio dot was placed mid-level ( · ). This is the origin of the concept of a comma, though the name came to be used for the mark itself instead of the clause it separated.

The mark used today is descended from a diagonal slash, or virgula suspensiva ( / ), used from the 13th to 17th centuries to represent a pause, notably by Aldus Manutius. In the 16th century, the virgule dropped to the bottom of the line and curved, turning into the shape used today ( , ).

The comma may be used to perform a number of functions in English writing. It is used in generally similar ways in other languages, particularly European ones, although the rules on comma usage – and their rigidity – vary from language to language.

In lists
Commas are used to separate items in lists, as in They own a cat, a dog, two rabbits and six mice. In English a comma may or may not be used before the final conjunction (and, or, nor) in a list of more than two elements. A comma used in such a position is called a serial comma or an Oxford or Harvard comma (after the Oxford University Press and Harvard University Press, both prominent advocates of this style). In some cases use or omission of such a comma may serve to avoid ambiguity, as in:

I spoke to the boys, Sam and Tom. – The boys refers to Sam and Tom (I spoke to two people).
I spoke to the boys, Sam, and Tom. – The boys, Sam, and Tom are separate units (I spoke to four or more people).
If the individual items of a list are long, complex, affixed with description or themselves contain commas, semicolons may be preferred as separators, and sometimes the list may be introduced with a colon.

Separation of clauses
Commas are often used to separate clauses. In English, a comma is generally used to separate a dependent clause from the independent clause if the dependent clause comes first: After I brushed the cat, I lint-rollered my clothes. (Compare I lint-rollered my clothes after I brushed the cat.) A relative clause takes commas if it is non-restrictive, as in I cut down all the trees, which were over six feet tall. (Without the comma, this would imply that only some of the trees – those over six feet tall – were cut down.)

Two independent clauses joined by a coordinating conjunction (for, and, nor, but, or, yet, so) may or may not be separated by commas, depending on preferred style, or sometimes a desire to overcome ambiguity.

In some languages, such as German and Polish, stricter rules apply on comma usage between clauses, with dependent clauses always being set off with commas, and commas being generally proscribed before certain coordinating conjunctions.

The joining of two independent sentences with a comma and no conjunction is known as a comma splice, and is often considered an error in English.

Parenthetical phrases
Commas are often used to enclose parenthetical words and phrases within a sentence (i.e. information which is not essential to the meaning of the sentence). Such phrases are both preceded and followed by a comma, unless that would result in a doubling of punctuation marks, or the parenthetical is at the start or end of the sentence. The following are examples of types of parenthetical phrases:

Introductory phrase: Once upon a time, I didn't know how to use commas.[5]
Address: My father ate the bagel, John.
Interjection: My father ate the bagel, gosh darn it!
Aside: My father, if you don’t mind my telling you this, ate the bagel.
Appositive: My father, a jaded and bitter man, ate the bagel.
Absolute phrase: My father, his eyes flashing with rage, ate the bagel.
Free modifier: My father, chewing with unbridled fury, ate the bagel.
Resumptive modifier: My father ate the bagel, a bagel which no man had yet chewed.
Summative modifier: My father ate the bagel, a feat which no man had attempted.
Between adjectives
A comma is used to separate coordinate adjectives; that is, adjectives that directly and equally modify the following noun. Adjectives are considered coordinate if the meaning would be the same if their order were reversed or if and were placed between them. For example:

The dull, incessant droning but the cute little cottage.
The devious lazy red frog suggests there are lazy red frogs (one of which is devious), while the devious, lazy red frog does not carry this connotation.
Before quotes
A comma is used to set off quoted material that is the grammatical object of an active verb of speaking or writing, as in Mr. Kershner says, "You should know how to use a comma." Quotations that follow and support an assertion should be set off by a colon rather than a comma.

In dates
When a date is written as a month followed by a day followed by a year, a comma separates the day from the year: December 7, 1941. This style is common in American English. Additionally, most style manuals, including the Chicago Manual of Style[6] and the AP Stylebook,[7] recommend that the year be treated as a parenthetical, requiring a second comma after it: "Feb. 14, 1987, was the target date."

In geographical names
Commas are used to separate parts of geographical references, such as city and state (Dallas, Texas) or city and country (Kampala, Uganda). Additionally, most style manuals, including the Chicago Manual of Style[8] and the AP Stylebook,[9] recommend that the second element be treated as a parenthetical, requiring a second comma after: "The plane landed in Kampala, Uganda, that evening."[10]

The United States Postal Service encourages the writing of address labels without any punctuation (and all in capital letters).

In numbers
Main article: Decimal separator
In representing large numbers, English texts use commas (or spaces) to separate each group of three digits. This is almost always done for numbers of six or more digits, and optionally for five (or even four) digits. (The SI writing style is to use spaces for this purpose.[11]) However, in many other languages (and in South Africa) the comma is used as a decimal separator, equivalent to the decimal point. In addition, the comma may not be used for this purpose at all in some number systems, and a space may be used to separate every three digits instead.

In names
Commas are used when writing names that are presented last name first: Smith, John. They are also used before many titles that follow a name: John Smith, Ph.D.

Emphasis and clarity
Fowler's Modern English Usage demonstrates an optional use of commas in the following sentences:

The teacher beat the scholar with a whip. A simple description.
The teacher beat the scholar, with a whip. For emphasis, as an expression of outrage; or to clarify that the teacher whipped the scholar, rather than the teacher beat a scholar who had a whip.
Elision
Commas may be used to indicate that a word has been omitted or that the comma has replaced the word itself, as in The cat was white; the dog, brown. (Here the comma clearly replaces was.)


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