Wednesday, February 9, 2011


Use commas ...
  1. after an introductory phrase or statement, like a prepositional phrase.
    • After her introduction, the magician took the stage.
  2. to separate three or more words in a list (unless you are using the word 'and' (or 'or') to separate each of the words).
    • I packed socks, pajamas, and t-shirts.
    • I packed socks and pajamas and t-shirts.
    • You may wear slacks or shorts or jeans.
  3. to separate two adjectives, unless one refers to age, color, or construction material.
    • The cold, hard bed was very uncomfortable.
    • He was a dignified older man.
    • It was a large brick house.
    • He drove a sleek red car.
  4. to set off extra information in a sentence, sometimes called parenthetical information.
    • His truck, a Ford F-150, was parked in the driveway.
  5. to separate the statement of a sentence from the closing question.
    • That was an awesome Super Bowl, wasn't it?
Never use commas ...
Special comma rules
See my previous posts for specific comma rules involving:


  1. I will bookmark this post with your excellent reminders. I have comma concerns ALL the time!

  2. On #2, you should mention Oxford Commas aren't always correct depending on context.

  3. @Michael I can't do that because I don't know the circumstances in which that comma should be left out! Feel free to post a link or further explanation.