Use of Conjunctions

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What are Conjunctions?

Conjunctions are the connecting words that are used to connect or join other words in a sentence or phrases together to form a proper and appropriate sentence.

The main function of this part of speech (conjunction) is to link words or join words together in such a way that it forms an interesting sentence.

Some Examples of Conjunctions are: and, but, because, since, while, etc.

Let us try to learn more types of conjunctions and it uses.

Types and Uses of Conjunctions

Conjunctions are of three types and these three types are further divided or separated into different parts.

Uses of conjunctions with respect to their types are discussed below.

Three types of conjunctions are:

  • Coordinating Conjunctions

  • Subordinating Conjunctions

  • Correlative Conjunctions.

1. Coordinating Conjunctions: This type of conjunction links equal parts of a sentence or tries to join two equal elements of a sentence which includes phrases or clauses.

A comma is used when two coordinating conjunctions are used to join or connect two independent clauses or phrases.

There are seven types of words in coordinating conjunctions and these types can be easily remembered by the most commonly used pneumonic acronym.

FANBOYS: for, and, nor, but, or, yet, so.

Let us learn how these words function with examples

  • For - It explains reason or sights purpose.

Example: I will overcome this obstacle, for I am not weak. 

  • And – It helps to add one phrase or clause to another similar one

Example: Rima ate eggs and bacon at brunch.

Rahul and his brother look alike.

  • Nor - It is used to add a negative idea to an already existing negative idea.

Example: Seta is neither hungry nor thirsty.

I don’t like mango nor do I like an apple.

  • But - It helps us to show a contrast.

Example: Hanna loved her little puppy, but she couldn’t take it to the school.

Sheena loved ice cream but due to cold or flu, she couldn’t have it.

  • Or - It helps to add an alternative to an already existing positive alternative.

Example:  would you prefer tea or coffee?

Be ready to leave by 10 am, or else we’ll leave without you.

  • Yet - It helps us to provide a contrasting ide to an existing logical idea or point.

Example: The play had a great beginning, yet it fell flat in act three.

Sheetal fears other dogs yet she loves my sister’s poodle.

  • So - It is usually used to indicate or show a result or consequence of an event.

Example:  My cat was hungry so I fed her.

I am allergic to wheat, so I can’t have that sandwich.

2. Subordinating Conjunctions: Subordinating conjunctions are simply the word/words that are used to join a subordinating clause to another clause or sentence.

For example: ‘’ He was annoyed, the train had stopped.’’

(Change the sentence using subordinating conjunctions)

‘’He was annoyed because the train had stopped.’’

(Because is the subordinating sentence used in the above example)

The most commonly used subordinating conjunctions are: because, since, while, though, although, until, when, where, once. These words show us the relation in time, place, situation, or condition.

Let us form a few sentences using subordinating conjunctions:

  • Sarita took an umbrella because it was raining.

  • Although she was disabled, she was involved in many social service campaigns.

  • Until spring arrives, we have to be prepared for more snow.

  • He was working hard while his wife was recovering at home.

  • Though they were not rich, they made monthly donations for the betterment of society.

  • Ever since she left her job, she has been actively taking care of her children at home.

3. Correlative Conjunctions: They are paired conjunctions that are generally used together like neither……nor, not……only, but……also, both…and, either….or, whether….or, no sooner…..than, rather….or etc. These conjunctions connect or join two balanced phrases or words. Correlative conjunctions exist in pairs.

Few sentences of correlative conjunctions are:

  • We can either go to Greece or Spain for our holiday.

  • Not only is he a professional footballer, but he’s also a successful businessman.

  • Neither Norway nor Switzerland is in the England Union.

  • Whether you love them or hate them.

  • No sooner had I finished watering the garden than it started raining.

  • Would you rather go shopping or spend the day at the beach.

Solved Questions

1) She is neither rich _____educated

  1. Either

  2. Or

  3. Nor

  4. But

Solution: (c) Nor (Correlative conjunction).

2) ______ The basement flooded, we spent all day cleaning up.

  1. After

  2. Although

  3. Before

  4. Even if

Solution: (a) After (subordinating conjunctions).


3) I wanted to go to the beach, ____ Mary refused.

  1. But

  2. Or

  3. So

  4. For

Solution: (a) but (Coordinating conjunctions).

FAQ (Frequently Asked Questions)

1. What are the 7 Fanboys?

Ans: Fanboys is a mnemonic that consists of seven words: for, and, nor, but, or, yet, so that is used as conjunctions.

2. What is the Basic Rule of Using Paired Conjunction in a Sentence?

Ans: The basic rule of using paired conjunctions is the subject should agree with the verb.