Grammar Lesson: Sentences, Fragments, and Run-On Sentences
A sentence can be a word (Stop!) or a group of words that must contain a subject (doer), a verb (action), and a complete thought.
- In the sentence, ''Lorina washed her face,'' the subject is Lorina, the verb is washed, and the group of words makes a complete thought.
A fragment is a group of words that might lack a subject or a verb and does not make a complete thought.
- ''During the trial'' is a fragment since there is no subject, verb, or complete thought.
- ''Vicki running next to her sister'' is another fragment because, though it has a subject, (Vicki), and possibly a verb (running), the group of words does not make a complete thought. Thus, it is not a sentence.
- The group of words ''After these stray dogs were placed in the pound'' is also a fragment. It has a subject (dogs) and a verb (were placed), but there is no complete thought.
A run-on sentence is two (or more) sentences incorrectly written as a single sentence.
- ''The sofa is comfortable, the chair is too'' is an example of a run-on sentence because two complete sentences are incorrectly joined (or spliced) by a comma.
- Sometimes run-on sentences have no punctuation at all! An example of this is, ''Princeton University is a fine place of higher learning it is located in New Jersey.'' Here, there are really two sentences that have been mistakenly joined or spliced into one.
Activity 1- What's What?
Five sentences (S), five fragments (F), and five run-on sentences (ROS) are found in these fifteen groups of words. Write the appropriate code letter(s) on the line next to the group of words.
- ____ Have you already visited that famous London museum?
- ____ At the beginning of the movie.
- ____ Let's open the presents, we want to see what you have been given.
- ____ Last year we photographed some of the events.
- ____ Again after all of the applause.
- ____ Before they started their photography business.
- ____ Please handle these expensive vases with care.
- ____ The men fixing the heater need more time, they can bill us more if they need to do so.
- ____ During the celebration held at the plaza.
- ____ Bring the empty cartons back from the factory they can be used again.
- ____ While you dial Molly's number, the rest of us can continue to set the table.
- ____ There are too many people in this elevator, who can take another one so this one is not so crowded?
- ____ Several telephone operators tried to assist me finally I gave up.
- ____ Leaving through the back door in the middle of the night last August.
- ____ We would really like to accept your invitation.
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