Help, I have no "Comma Sense"!

"Hooray for Bad Puns!"

Frequently Asked Questions

  • When do I use commas?
~ Use the rules listed below to obtain a full understanding of the concept.

  • Why are there a bunch of puns?
~ Puns are, in our opinion, quite amazing. "DEAL WITH IT!"

  • What do commas look like?
~ They resemble tear drops, and no, this wasn't a serious question or answer, I was simply checking if you were actually paying attention.

Rules for Using Commas

Rule No. 1: In a simple series, use a comma to separate the elements, but don’t put a comma before the conjunction.

Rule No. 2: Use a comma to separate two independent clauses connected by a coordinating conjunction.

Rule No. 3: Use a comma following an introductory clause or prepositional phrase of four words or more.

Rule No. 4: Use commas to set off modifiers that are not essential to the reader's ability to identify a particular person, place or thing.

Rule No. 5: Use commas to separate adjectives of equal rank.

Rule No. 6: Use commas to set off words that add emphasis, shift attention or provide a fuller explanation (parenthetical, "yes," "no," names in direct address).

Rule No. 7: Use commas to set off participial modifiers that come at the beginning of a sentence or after the verb.

Rule No. 8: Use a comma, carefully, to set off quotes or paraphrases.

Rule No. 9: Use a comma with hometowns, ages, years with months and days, names of states and nations with cities, affiliations and most large numbers.

Rule No. 10: Use a comma to separate duplicate words to eliminate confusion.

Rule No. 11: Use a comma to separate independent and dependent clauses.


Commas are used to separate clauses, or parts of a sentence.


Commas in a Series:

  • My $10 million estate was split between my husband, daughter, son, and nephew.
  • The child had a collection consisting of toys, candy, and random socks.
Commas separating prepositional phrases:

  • My project is quite astonishing, since it consists of many facts and is visually appealing.
  • Above the house, there is a rather gargantuan hornets nest.
Commas separating clauses:

  • I am quite talented with fabricating extensive sentences, and my fellow classmates are unable to comprehend its sophisticated structure.
  • The cat is white, and the dog is brown. (Quite elementary, I concur.)