Is It a Phrase or a Clause? It Matters

Margie Wakeman Wells General, The Comma Leave a Comment

A dependent clause has a subject and a verb; a phrase does not. …after lunch (phrase) …after we ate lunch (clause) …since Friday (phrase) …since I left Friday (clause) …before the session (phrase) …before the session ended (clause) The difference matters. For example, at the beginning of a sentence, the phrases above do NOT take a comma; the clauses do. …

Is It a Phrase or a Clause? It Matters!

Margie Wakeman Wells Definitions 9 Comments

I want to get some terminology straight. I often see posts on Facebook that use the terms phrase and clause — incorrectly. It is important to recognize the difference because whether something is a phrase or a clause directly affects punctuation. Here is the “CliffsNote” version of the grammar of phrases and clauses. A phrase is a group of related …