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GEN 100

Writing Workshop

Forms of Sentences

A clause is a simple sentence, with a subject and a predicate. Clauses can be either independent (they can stand alone) or dependent (they require an independent clause).

There are four basic sentence forms:

Simple Sentence

Independent Clause

This is a simple sentence with a subject and predicate. Adjuncts can fill out the sentences.

Compound Sentence

Independent Clause
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Independent Clause

A compound sentence has two or more independent clauses joined by a coordinating conjunction. Both clauses could stand by themselves without the other. There is no dependent clause.

Complex Sentence

Independent Clause
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Dependent Clause

A complex sentence has one independent clause, and one or more dependent clauses. In the following examples, the independent clause is underlined. The dependent clause can appear before, after, or within the independent clause.

Compund-Complex

Independent Clause
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Independent Clause
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Dependent Clause

A compound-complex sentence has at least two independent clauses and at least one dependent clause. They can be in any order. In the following examples, the independent clauses are underlined.