Introduction to Compound Sentence
A compound sentence is one of the 8 kinds of sentences, based on the structure. It comes after the simple sentence and before the complex sentence. In short, a compound sentence comes with at least two independent clauses. You may know what an independent clause is about. An independent clause can convey a complete meaning of a sentence without any external help. The dependent clause is just the opposite of the independent clause.
When it comes to connecting two independent clauses in a compound sentence, the coordinating conjunction comes up. Note that you must use a comma before the coordinating conjunction in a compound sentence.
Let's take some examples now:
Harry is an avid gardener, so he devotes a lot of time to his garden.
Independent Clause 1: Harry is an avid gardener
Independent Clause 2: He devotes a lot of time to his garden
Coordinating Conjunction: So
You can clearly see in the above example that a comma has been placed before the coordinating conjunction 'so.'
Note that two or more independent clauses in a compound sentence must have equal weight and related meaning. That means every clause must have a connection with each other.
Some Other Examples:
Miranda left for the office, but she forgot her file in the home.
You can take two days two complete the project, or he will assign it to someone else.
He is not well prepared for the final test, yet he is not worried about it.
Sheila is coming to our home after five years, and we are very happy about it.
David is not feeling well, for he cannot join the party.
I hope you can point out the independent clauses from the above compound sentences. The coordinating conjunctions are the bolded words in every sentence.
Use the acronym "FANBOYS" to memorize all the coordinating conjunctions, which are for, and, nor, but, or, yet, so.
You can also make use of a semicolon to connect two independent clauses. However, the practice is not widely popular. Moreover, two independent clauses must be closely connected.
Miranda is a marketing expert; she knows how to deal with online marketing campaigns.
Thomas is a brilliant student; he comes first in every exam.
Robert invited us for his birthday party; we could not join due to the bad weather.
Using Conjunctive Adverb
A conjunctive adverb can also be used to connect two independent clauses in a compound sentence. Note that a conjunctive adverb must be preceded with a semicolon and followed by a comma.
Peter came to the city; however, he did not come to meet us.
Amanda has excellent academic records; moreover, she is an accomplished dancer.
It's raining cats and dogs; therefore, we cannot go for the excursion today.
There are many other conjunctive adverbs available that you can use to construct a compound sentence. Some of them are rather, instead, furthermore, of course, in addition, similarly, then, in conclusion, certainly, undoubtedly, likewise, definitely, etc.
Now, you are familiar with the features and characteristics of a compound sentence. It's time to talk about how to spot a compound sentence in the mix of simple and complex sentences.
How to spot a Compound Sentence?
The first parameter of recognizing a compound sentence is the coordinating conjunction. Most compound sentences make of use coordinating conjunctions. Some use a semicolon as well.
Do not forget to check if the coordinating conjunction is connecting independent clauses or not.
John and David were promoted this year.
It is not a compound sentence. 'And' is not joining two independent clauses. Look at the subject- it is a compound subject. In short, it is a simple sentence.
David met his relatives and talked to his friends after returning home.
Here, 'and' is not connecting two independent clauses. It is again a simple sentence. However, it is an example of a compound predicate ('met' and 'talked').
Now, how can you differentiate between a compound sentence and a complex sentence?
A compound sentence is only about two or more independent clauses. On the other hand, a complex sentence is about an independent clause as well as at least one dependent clause.
Moreover, a complex sentence joins clauses together with a subordinating conjunction.
Miranda planted a tree many years ago, and it bears lots of fruits now. (A compound sentence with 'and' as a coordinating conjunction)
Miranda keeps on planting trees because she is an ardent gardener. (A complex sentence with 'because' as subordinating conjunction)
The compound sentence is not too difficult to spot. You just need to remember its characteristics and the features that make it different from the simple and complex sentence.