A complex sentence consists of one independent clause and at least one dependent clause. It is formed by connecting the clauses using subordinating conjunctions. A compound sentence, on the other hand, is made up of two or more independent clauses joined by coordinating conjunctions.
Independent vs Dependent Clause
An independent clause is a complete sentence that can stand alone and express a complete thought. It contains both a subject and a predicate. A dependent clause, also known as a subordinate clause, cannot stand alone as a sentence because it does not express a complete thought. It relies on an independent clause to make sense.
Examples of Independent Clauses:
- I love to read books.
- She sings beautifully.
- We went to the beach.
Examples of Dependent Clauses:
- After the rain stopped,
- Because I was tired,
- When she arrives,
Coordinating vs Subordinating Conjunction
Coordinating conjunctions are used to join independent clauses of equal importance and structure within a compound sentence. They can show a relationship of addition, contrast, choice, or other connections. Subordinating conjunctions, on the other hand, are used to introduce dependent clauses and connect them to independent clauses within a complex sentence. They indicate a relationship of dependence or subordination.
Examples of Coordinating Conjunctions:
- I like coffee and I enjoy tea.
- She is smart but sometimes lazy.
- We can go by car or take the bus.
Examples of Subordinating Conjunctions:
- After I finish my homework,
- Although it was raining,
- Because she was sick,
Examples: Complex vs Compound Sentence
I felt tired because I had a long day at work.
More Examples of Complex Sentences:
- I stared out of the window while I reminisced.
- Supposing you are wrong, always have a backup plan.
- Even though it was too hot to go out, we left for a long drive.
I like coffee and I enjoy tea.
More Examples of Compound Sentences:
- I was sitting beside you but I was somewhere else.
- Kara’s advice was illogical, yet I considered following it.
- I haven’t been to Disneyland nor am I interested.
|Elements||Complex Sentence||Compound Sentence|
|Clause||One Independent & at least one Dependent||Two or more Independent|
With a clear understanding of complex and compound sentences, you can effectively use them to convey different types of information and create more varied and engaging writing.