Sentence Combining

Combine sentences using coordination when the ideas are equally important:

Use a coordinating conjunction and comma:

My friend is coming to town for the weekend. I’m excited to see him.
My friend is coming to town for the weekend, and I’m excited to see him.

(Coordination conjunctions: for, and, nor, but, or, yet, so)

Use a semicolon alone or with a conjunctive adverb:

My computer crashed. I lost all of my files.
My computer crashed; I lost all of my files.

I lost all of my files. I will have to retype my paper.
I lost all of my files; therefore, I will have to retype my paper.

(Commonly used conjunctive adverbs: afterwards, as a result, consequently, however, in addition, instead, then, therefore)

Combine sentences using subordination when one idea is more important than the other:

I had a terrible cold. I decided to go to work anyway.
Although I had a terrible cold, I decided to go to work anyway.

(Commonly used subordinating conjunctions: after, although, as if, because, before, even though, since, so that, unless, when, whenever, where, while)

Start with an adverb:

Hurricanes lose force as they approach the coast. This happens frequently.
Frequently, hurricanes lose force as they approach the coast.

Turn one sentence into an –ing verb phrase:

Jonah did well in the high jump. He came in second.
Jonah did well in the high jump, coming in second.

Turn one sentence into an –ed verb phrase:

He won the election easily. He is noted for his honesty.
Noted for his honesty, he won the election easily.

Turn one sentence into an appositive:

Margo is a single mother of three. She has a hard time paying her bills.
Margo, a single mother of three, has a hard time paying her bills.

Turn one sentence into an adjective clause:

Margo is a single mother of three. She has a hard time paying her bills.
Margo, who is a single mother of three, has a hard time paying her bills.

The pie made me sick. I ate it yesterday.
The pie that I ate yesterday made me sick.

(An adjective clause describes a noun. It usually begins with who, which, or that. If the clause is an essential modifier, as in the second case, do not enclose it in commas.