Commas and semi-colons. If the rules you learned about commas and semi-colons don't mean much to you, forget them and try this: Read one of your sentences aloud and see where you would naturally pause, where you would draw a breath. If it's a short pause, like that just was, you probably need a comma. If it's a longer pause, but not quite a full stop for which you'd need a period , you probably need a semi-colon; remember that whatever follows a semi-colon must be able to stand on its own, as a full sentence, like this one. If you don't want your reader to pause, there shouldn't be a comma, there, because as, this demonstrates it's very difficult to figure, out, what you're saying when your punctuation, makes the sentence unreadable. Your sentences shouldn't leave your reader hyperventilating from the constant shallow breaths that over-punctuation requires.
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A colon : is a punctuation mark used to start any kind of enumeration or lists. It is also used in titles and subtitles of books, business or formal letters, to distinguish hours from minutes when specifying time, and in a number of other cases. However, knowing how to use colons properly requires the knowledge of the following rules:. At the end of an independent clause when it is needed to list several items; usually, such lists are introduced with the words for example, namely, such as, like, as follows, and so on.
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Even expert English writers have trouble with figuring out how to use a semicolon and colon. Therefore, it comes as little surprise to learn that foreign students have an especially hard time with it. While this may not be the easiest form of punctuation to master, there are actually quite a few rules and tricks that can help you. If you are eager to learn what these are, then you have come to the right place. Below, you will discover the proper use of semicolon and colon, making your writing seem a lot more polished.