Daily Grammar

Lesson 250

Parts of the Sentence - Compound Sentences

A clause is a group of words having a subjectThe subject tells who or what about the verb.  Source: Lesson 91 and a verbVerbs show action or state of being. Most verbs are action words, but a few verbs indicate state of being or existence.
Source: Lesson 1
.  An independent clause can stand alone as a sentence.  A dependent clause is always used as some part of speech.  It can be an adjectiveAdjectives modify or affect the meaning of nouns and pronouns and tell us which, whose, what kind, and how many about the nouns or pronouns they modify. They come before the noun or pronoun they modify.  Source: Lesson 151, adverbAdverbs are words that modify (1) verbs, (2) adjectives, and (3) other adverbs. They tell how (manner), when (time), where (place), how much (degree), and why (cause). Source: Lesson 161, or nounA noun is a word that names a person, place, thing, or idea. Examples: man, city, book, and courage.  Source: Lesson 16.  It cannot stand alone as a sentence.

A phrase is a group of words used as a sentence part. It does not have a subject and a verb.  It can be a noun, adjective, or adverb.  We have studied the following phrases: prepositionalA prepositional phrase starts with a preposition, ends with an object, and may have modifiers between the preposition and the object of the preposition.
Source: Lesson 180
, gerundA gerund is a verbal that always ends in ing and is used as a noun. Example: Eating is fun.  Gerunds can have with them direct objects, predicate nominatives, predicate adjectives, or modifiers to form what is called a gerund phrase.  Source: Lesson 212, participialA participle is a verbal and is used as an adjective. Participles end in various ways. They modify nouns and pronouns and can precede or follow the word they modify.  A participial phrase is made up of a participle and any complements.  Source: Lesson 222, and infinitiveAn infinitive is a verbal that is to plus a verb form. It can be a noun, an adjective, or an adverb. Examples: to be, to see, to be seen, to be eaten.  An infinitive phrase is made up of a infinitive and any complements.  Source: Lessons 217, 224, & 232.


A compound sentence combines two or more independent clauses.  Commas separate the clauses of a compound sentence. (A short sentence joined by and is sometimes combined without a comma.)  A semicolon can take the place of the conjunctionA conjunction is a word that joins other words, phrases (groups of words), or clauses (groups of words with a subjects and verb).  Source: Lesson 201 and comma.  Only clauses closely related in thought should be joined to make a compound sentence.

SheS talksV andC heS listensV.


Instructions: Tell whether the words in quotation marks are independent clauses, dependent clauses, prepositional phrases, participial phrases, gerund phrases, or infinitive phrases.

1. "When I received the email," I knew it was "not to be opened."

"WhenC IS receivedV theAdj emailDO," I knew it  
was "notAdv to be openedVbl."

  - "When I received the email" - dependent clause
  - "not to be opened" - infinitive phrase

2. When you go to the store, "buy some ice cream and cookies."

When you go to the store, "buyV someAdj  
ice creamDO andC cookiesDO.  

  - independent clause

3. The vase must have been broken "by the grandchildren."

The vase must have been broken "byPrep theAdj grandchildrenOoP."

  - prepositional phrase

4. "Having been left alone," the boy jumped at every noise.

"Having been leftVbl aloneAdv," the boy  
jumped at every noise.

  - participial phrase

5. "Planning a successful wedding" requires lots of work.

"PlanningVbl aAdj successfulAdj weddingDO"  
requires lots of work.

  - gerund phrase

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