The Comma

The comma is one of the most important punctuation marks in English. Knowing how to use it properly is essential for every ESL student.


1. Use commas before co-ordinating conjunctions that join independent clauses.

  • I gave him a severe punishment, but it didn't help at all.

2. Use commas after introductory phrases and adverb clauses.

  • After he had humiliated himself in front of the jury, he gave up singing for good.

3. Use commas to seperate things in a series:

  • We went to the shop and bought a lot of products: vegetables, fruits, sweets and spices.

 4. Use commas to set off non-restrictive elements and other parenthetical elements.

  •  This restaurant, that I discovered last week, serves exellent wine.