Explain the proper use of the comma to set apart nonessential elements within a sentence


Answer 1


Commas are used as a signal to readers that a modifying element is not essential to their understanding of the sentence. Commas must be placed before and after the nonessential element when it appears in the middle of a sentence. For example: The Library of Congress, located in Washington, DC, has one of three original Gutenberg Bibles in its collection.


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Answer 2
Answer: A nonessential element, also referred to as nonrestrictive element, is a word, phrase or clause that is not essential to the meaning of the sentence. When a nonessential clause is removed from the sentence, the sentence still makes sense without it; it is unrestricted, or not essential.

Nonessential elements are always offset with commas. The commas dictate a pause when you are reading the sentence or speaking it out loud. If the word, phrase or clause is easily removed from the sentence or moved to another spot within the sentence, the clause is set off with commas on each side. Likewise, if the element interrupts the flow of the sentence, offsetting commas are used.


-The information, however, was inaccurate.
-The information was inaccurate, however.
-The information was inaccurate.

“However” is a nonessential word because it interrupts the flow of the sentence, requiring offsetting commas. It is also moved without changing the meaning of the sentence.

Related Questions


Read the passage. Edgar Allan Poe

The great American writer Edgar Allan Poe is known for his haunting poetry and his literary criticism. His skill as a critic had great influence on the writing of his time; it also earned him enemies. Poe led a life that can only be described as tragic, yet he left an indelible mark on American literature.

What makes this passage an example of formal rather than informal writing?

its vocabulary and grammar
its use of conversational language
its first-person narration
its humorous tone


The answer is: its vocabulary and grammar.

The passage about Edgar Allan Poe contains formal writing characteristics, which are used to communicate in a business or academic environment, or with people we are not acquainted with. For example, the text does not include contractions or slang, it is not written in the first person and it makes use of the passive voice. Furthermore, it possesses some compound sentences, and its vocabulary consists of longer words than in informal language, some of which have Latin and Greek origins.

Its vocabulary and grammer

Does Sula tell American history



Sula is a novel that was written by Toni Morrison.  It is about the struggles of African Americans in the first half of the 1900s.  The struggles described are those based upon racism—injustice and non-equality.  The struggles detailed are those of perseverance in the face of resistance, resistance brought about by those who sought to keep African Americans down (socially and economically).  Thus, yes, because African Americans are Americans, and this novel details the truth of their struggles, Sula is definitely a novel that tells American history.


Run from your house to the train station because the train will arrive


But, what if i don't need to take the train?

Read the excerpt from Narrative of the Life of Frederick Douglass. And to cap the climax of their base ingratitude and fiendish barbarity, my grandmother, who was now very old, having outlived my old master and all his children, having seen the beginning and end of all of them, and her present owners finding she was of but little value, her frame already racked with the pains of old age, and complete helplessness fast stealing over her once active limbs, they took her to the woods, built her a little hut, put up a little mud chimney, and then made her welcome to the privilege of supporting herself there in perfect loneliness; thus virtually turning her out to die! How does Douglass use imagery in the excerpt to emphasize how old and weak his grandmother is? He claims that the slaveholders are “virtually turning her out to die.” He points out that she is “supporting herself there in perfect loneliness.” He explains that the slaveholders found that “she was of little value.” He describes her body as being “racked with the pains of old age.”



B. He points out that she is “supporting herself there in perfect loneliness.”


Imagery is used in different writings to make a story interesting to the reader. It brings the reader close to the environment of narration. The imagery also makes the reader understand fully the surrounding under which the reader features the story. For instance, the above excert, the reader describe her grandmother’s situation with perfect loneliness to express how deep she was alone and needed somebody by her side even though she was growing very old. The description, therefore, takes the reader to the narrator’s psyche.

The correct answer is D. I just took the test

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