Wednesday, January 20, 2010

Simple, Complex and Compound Sentences

While speaking or while writing, we commonly use three kinds of sentences.

  • Simple Sentences
  • Complex Sentences
  • Compound Sentences

We have been learning English for the past five years.

(Simple Sentence)

As we feel the need for English, we have been learning it.

(Complex Sentence)

English is a useful language and so we’ve been learning it.

(Compound Sentence)

In a Simple Sentence, we have one finite verb and it is the main clause of the sentence.

In a Complex Sentence, we have two clauses, one main clause and one subordinate clause.

In a Compound Sentence, we have two main clauses connected by a coordinating conjunction “and”, “so”, “but”, etc.

The subordinate clauses in complex sentences are caused by the following conjunctions:

  • For time concept: When, While, As, After, Before
  • For cause concept: Because, Since, As
  • For concession concept: Though, Although, Even though
  • For condition concept: If, Even if, As if, Unless
  • For inherent concept: So that

When John met his friend, he greeted him.

(Complex Sentence)

On meeting his friend John greeted him.

(Simple Sentence)

John met his friend and greeted him.

(Compound Sentence)

The program was cancelled due to heavy rains.

(Simple Sentence)

The program was cancelled because it rained heavily.

(Complex Sentence)

It rained heavily (and) so the program was cancelled.

(Compound Sentence)

Though she is rich, she is very simple.

(Complex Sentence)

In spite of being rich, she is very simple.

(Simple Sentence)

She is very rich but is very simple.

(Compound Sentence)

If you work hard, you will succeed.

(Complex Sentence)

In the event of working hard, you will succeed.

(Simple Sentence)

Work hard and you will succeed.

(Compound Sentence)

The problem is too difficult for me to solve.

(Simple Sentence)

The problem is so difficult that I can’t solve it.

(Complex Sentence)

The problem is very difficult and I can’t solve it.

(Compound Sentence)

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