A complex sentence is a sentence that contains an independent clause and one or more dependent clauses. In this lesson, we will learn all about this type!
What Are Complex Sentences?
A complex sentence is a sentence that has an independent clause and one or more dependent clauses.
Dependent vs. Independent Clauses
How to Identify a Complex Sentence?
Subordinating conjunctions are words that are used to link an independent clause to a dependent clause. The most common subordinating conjunctions are:
Michael studied law
One of the most common types of complex sentences are conditional sentences. These sentences talk about hypothetical situations, often using 'if' or 'unless' as condition markers.
The baby won't go to sleep
Compound Sentence vs. Complex Sentence
Complex sentences are similar to compound sentences, with only one difference: compound sentences have two independent clauses, but complex sentences have one independent and one or more dependent clauses.
Joining Clauses Together
When an independent and a dependent clause join together to form a complex sentence, the sentence can have two structures:
- the independent clause comes first:
I was snippy with him because I was running late for work.
- the dependent clause comes first:
Because I was running late for work, I was snippy with him.
If the dependent clause comes first, it's best to separate the clauses with a comma. However, if the independent clause comes first, there is no need for a comma.
'Complex sentences' are used with subordinating conjunctions. They are made up of one independent clause and one or more dependant clauses. The only difference between compound and complex clauses is that compound clauses are made up of two independent clauses.
Here are some examples of complex sentences.
Although I am not good at it, I enjoyed playing basketball with John.
Since she left me, I decided to raise our child on my own.
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