An independent clause is a clause that can stand alone as a sentence (i.e., it expresses a complete thought).
An independent clause, like all clauses, has a subject and verb.
When there are no dependent clauses in the same sentence an independent clause, the independent clause is a simple sentence. For example:
Examples of Independent ClausesHere are some examples of independent clauses (shaded). Notice how they could stand alone as sentences. (This is the difference between an independent clause and a dependent clause.)
What is a clause?
What is a sentence?
What is the subject of a sentence?
What are verbs?
What is a dependent clause?
What is a simple sentence?
What is a complex sentence?
What is a compound sentence?
What are coordinate conjunctions?
Commas before conjunctions
USE A COMMA BEFORE A CONJUNCTION THAT JOINS TWO INDEPENDENT CLAUSES
Writers are often unsure whether to use a comma before a coordinate conjunction (i.e., a word like and and but). You should use a comma before a coordinate conjunction that joins two independent clauses. For example:
THE MAIN TYPES OF SENTENCE
A sentence with two or more independent clauses is called a compound sentence. Here are the basic types of sentence with the independent clauses shaded:
Click on the