Conjunction is a word used for connecting or joining clauses, words, phrases together in a sentence e.g. and, but, yet, or, because, nor, while, where etc.
- Rameen and Maham are real sisters. (The Conjunction "and" joins two words, Rameen and Maham).
- She is poor but she does not steal. (The Conjunction "but" joins two sentence).
Conjunctions are used as single words or in pairs. Examples: and, but, or are used by themselves, whereas, neither/nor, either/or are conjunction pairs.
Types of Conjunction
There are three types of conjunctions; Coordinating Conjunctions, Subordinating Conjunctions and Correlative Conjunctions. Let us learn the types and examples of conjunctions and their correct use.
- The Coordinating Conjunctions are single words that join clauses of equal rank or have similar grammatical structure; for example:
- He is a doctor and his father is a lawyer.
These Conjunctions may be Cumulative (as; and, also, too, as well as, etc.), Alternative; (as; or, else, otherwise); Adversative (but, yet, still, only, etc.) or Illative (as; for, then, so, therefore).
- The Subordinating Conjunctions also join similar words, phrases or elements to another on which it depends for its full meaning; for example:
- Wait here till I return.
These may show: Time: (before, after, till, until, etc.); Cause or Reason; (since, as, because); Purpose: (that, so that, lest, etc.); Effect: (so...that); Condition; (if, unless, provided, etc.); Comparison: (as...as, as much, no less than); Concession or Contrast: (though, although, however); or Extent or Manner: (as...as...so, so long as, etc.).
- Correlative Conjunctions are actually adverbs that are used as conjunctions.
Single-word conjunctions list: after, although, and, also, as, because, before, but, for, however, if, lest, nor, only, or, otherwise, provided, since, so, still, that, then, therefore, though, till, too, unless, until, while, where, yet etc.
Compound conjunctions list: as...as...so, as long as, as far as, as...as, as much, as well as, in order to, even if, no less than, so long as, so that etc.
Examples of Conjunctions
Let us understand the use of different conjunctions that we use commonly.
- And - It connects or adds one thing to another. Example: I love both cheesecake and the chocolate cake.
- But - It is used to show a contrast between two items or ideas. Example: I wanted to go to the party, but I have to go to work today.
- For - It is used to sight a reason or purpose. Example: I bought a new racket for my upcoming match.
- Nor - It is used to indicate a negative idea to an already existing negative idea. Example: Neither Italy nor France got to the quarter finals last year.
- Or - It is used to present an alternative to an already present positive idea. Example: I don't like tea or coffee.
- So - It is a conjunction that is used to indicate the effect or result of an occurrence. Example: It was so dark that we could hardly see.
- Yet - It is used to introduce an idea that adds something to a previous idea and is usually contrasting with it. Example: I practice daily yet I couldn't put up a good show yesterday.
Use of Certain Conjunctions
The use of certain Conjunctions needs some explanation and here it is.
- No sooner...than: "No sooner" is always followed by did; as,
- No sooner did I reach the station than the train started.
- No sooner did they enter the house than it feels down.
- Unless and Lest : "Unless" means if not and another "not" therefore, is not required; as,
- Unless you work (=if you do not work) hard, you cannot succeed.
- Unless you speak the truth (if you do not speak the truth), you cannot be forgiven.
" Lest " means so that not, and is always followed by "should"; as,
- Work hard lest you should (so that you should not) fail.
- Run fast lest you should (=so that you should not) miss the train.
- Though... yet & As if: "Though" may or may not be followed by "yet"; but it is never followed by "but"; as,
- Though she is poor, yet she is contented.
- Though she is poor, she is contented.
"As if" is followed by a Verb in the Subjective Mood; as,
- She speaks English as if it were her mother-tongue.
- His ten years old son sings as if he was a born singer.
- Scarcely: it is followed by "when"; as,
- Scarcely had I left the house, when it began to rain.
- Scarcely had the rain stopped, when our compartment caught fire.
- Such... as; As... so; As... as; so... that; Both... and... &; Whether...or; Not...only; but also: These are all Correlatives and their use, as illustrated below, should be noted very carefully;
- I like such boys as are very healthy and strong.
- As you sow, so shall you reap.
- She is as intelligent as she is industrious.
- I am so tired that I cannot walk a step further.
- He is both a fool and a knave.
- I have to be there, whether I like it or not.
- He is not only cunning but also dishonest.
Common Errors in the Use of Conjunctions
Any violation of the rules of the correct use of a conjunction leads to a serious mistake as shown by the sentences given below examples:
- He must either go or I. Either he or I must go.
- Neither he is here nor is his brother. Neither he nor his brother is here.
- Both Abid as wall as Amir are happy. Both Abid and Amir are happy.
- As she is ill so she cannot come. As she is ill, she cannot come.
- If he is poor, then I will help him. If he is poor, I will help him.
- Because he is honest, therefore we believe in him. We believe in him, because he is honest.
- No sooner we left the shop, it began to rain. No sooner did we leave the shop than it began to rain.
- I cannot say if he will pass or not. I cannot say whether he will pass or not.
- Unless you do not tell the truth, you must be punished. Unless you tell the truth, you must be punished.
- Although he is old, but he is strong. Although he is old, yet he is strong.
- Walk with care lest you should not fall down. Walk with care lest you should fall down.
- I like such books which are interesting. I like such books as are interesting.
- Not only I went home but I stayed there. Not only did I go home but also I stayed there.
- I asked him that whether he was ill. I asked him whether he was ill.
- He asked me that if she was ill. He asked me if she was ill.
- We asked him that how he had escaped. We asked him how he had escaped.
- I had scarcely gone out than the rain started. I had scarcely gone out when the rain started.
- She is not healthy as her mother. She is not so healthy as her mother.
- We could both see the tiger and the tigress. We could see both the tiger and the tigress.
- Scarcely had I begun my work as he arrived. Scarcely had I begun my work when he arrived.