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Overview: Conjunctions | Basic English Grammar for Competitive Exams - Bank Exams PDF Download

Introduction of Conjunction

Conjunctions are words that join together sentences, phrases, or words in both Hindi and English. They help in making sentences more meaningful and smooth.

Types of Conjunction

1. Coordinating Conjunctions: Coordinating conjunctions connect words, phrases, or clauses of equal importance.

Some common coordinating conjunctions are:

  • (and) - I have a book and a pen.
  • (but) - He is rich but unhappy.
  • (or) - Would you like tea or coffee?
  • (otherwise) - Do your homework, otherwise, you will fail the exam.

2. Subordinating Conjunctions: Subordinating conjunctions connect dependent clauses to independent clauses.

Some common subordinating conjunctions are:

  • (when) - I will call you when I reach home.
  • (because) - She was absent because she was sick.
  • (like/as) - She sings like an angel.
  • (if) - If it rains, we will stay at home.

3. Correlative Conjunctions: Correlative conjunctions work in pairs to connect words, phrases, or clauses.

Some common correlative conjunctions are:

  • (neither...nor) - She neither drinks tea nor coffee.
  • (not only...but also) - He not only studies hard but also plays sports.
  • (whether...or) - Whether you like it or not, you have to attend the meeting.
  • (either...or) - You can either come with us or stay at home.

1. Use coordinating conjunctions to connect independent clauses.

  • When using coordinating conjunctions to connect independent clauses, use a comma before the coordinating conjunction to separate the clauses. For example: "I went to the store, and I bought some milk."

2. Use subordinating conjunctions to connect dependent and independent clauses.

  • When using subordinating conjunctions to connect dependent and independent clauses, do not use a comma unless the dependent clause comes before the independent clause. For example: "Because it was raining, we stayed inside."

3. Use correlative conjunctions to connect words, phrases, or clauses that have a parallel structure.

  • Correlative conjunctions should be used in pairs to connect words, phrases, or clauses that have a parallel structure. For example: "Either you must leave or you must apologize."

3. Avoid using too many conjunctions in a sentence.

  • While conjunctions are useful for connecting ideas, using too many can make a sentence long and difficult to read. Use conjunctions sparingly, and make sure each conjunction serves a purpose in the sentence.

4. Use the right conjunction for the right situation.

  • Choosing the correct conjunction is essential to convey the intended meaning of the sentence. Make sure to use coordinating conjunctions when connecting independent clauses, subordinating conjunctions when connecting dependent and independent clauses, and correlative conjunctions when connecting words, phrases, or clauses with parallel structure.

Functions of Conjunctions 

1. To express contrast or opposition
but

  • Example: He is rich, he is not happy.
    (He is rich, but he is not happy.)

2. To express the condition
- if

  • Example: you study hard, you will pass the exam.
    (If you study hard, you will pass the exam.)

3. To express cause or reason
- because

  • Example: She is upset she lost her job.
    (She is upset because she lost her job.)

4. To express time
- when

  • Example: I was a child, I used to play cricket.
    (When I was a child, I used to play cricket.)

5. To express purpose
- so that

  • Example: He is working hard he can support his family.
    (He is working hard so that he can support his family.)

6. To express concession
- although

  • Example: it was raining, we decided to go out.
    (Although it was raining, we decided to go out.)

7. To express comparison
- as

  • Example: You should treat others you want to be treated.
    (You should treat others as you want to be treated.)

Solved Exercise

Exercise 1: Combine the following sentences using conjunctions (and, but, or, so).
She woke up late. She still managed to get to work on time.

She woke up late, but she still managed to get to work on time.
"but" is used here to show contrast between the two sentences.

I wanted to buy a new phone. I didn't have enough money.

I wanted to buy a new phone, but I didn't have enough money.
"but" is used to show contrast between the two situations.

He loves playing soccer. He loves watching soccer games.

He loves playing soccer and watching soccer games.
"and" is used to connect the two similar interests.

You can have ice cream. You can have a piece of cake.

You can have ice cream or a piece of cake.
"or" is used to show a choice between two options.

It was raining heavily. They decided to stay indoors.

It was raining heavily, so they decided to stay indoors.
"so" is used to show the result or consequence of the first sentence.

Exercise 2: Identify the conjunctions in the following sentences and explain their use.

I am tired, but I have to finish my homework.

Conjunction: but
"but" is used to show contrast between being tired and needing to complete homework.

She didn't like the movie, nor did she enjoy the popcorn.

Conjunction: nor
"nor" is used to connect two negative statements, showing that neither event was enjoyable.

We can go to the beach, or we can visit the museum.

Conjunction: or
"or" is used to show a choice between two alternatives.

He didn't have an umbrella, so he got wet in the rain.

Conjunction: so
"so" is used to show the result or consequence of not having an umbrella in the rain.

Although she was scared, she decided to face her fears.

Conjunction: although
"although" is used to show contrast between being scared and deciding to face her fears.

Exercise 3: Fill in the blanks with appropriate conjunctions (and, but, or, so, because).
She wanted to go for a walk, _____ it was too hot outside.

but
"but" is used to show contrast between wanting to go for a walk and the hot weather.

We can go to the park, _____ we can watch a movie at home.

or
"or" is used to show a choice between two alternatives.

She passed the exam _____ she studied hard.

because
"because" is used to show the reason for passing the exam.

He loves playing basketball _____ listening to music.

and
"and" is used to connect two similar interests.

I forgot to set my alarm, _____ I woke up late.

so
"so" is used to show the result or consequence of not setting an alarm.

Spotting Errors (Conjunction)

1. She enjoys both reading books, and also watching movies.
Correction: She enjoys both reading books and watching movies.

When using "both," it should be followed by X "and" Y, not X "and also" Y.

2. Although he is talented, but he lacks discipline.
Correction: Although he is talented, he lacks discipline.

"Although" and "but" are redundant in this sentence. Use one or the other.

3. I want to buy a new car, so I am saving money, and I am looking for a better job.
Correction: I want to buy a new car, so I am saving money and looking for a better job.

Remove the unnecessary "and" after the comma.

4. He was tired, he couldn't sleep because of the noise.
Correction: He was tired, but he couldn't sleep because of the noise.

Use "but" instead of the comma to show contrast.

5. She doesn't like tea, nor coffee.
Correction: She doesn't like tea or coffee.

Use "or" instead of "nor." "Nor" is used after "neither."

6. The weather was cold, however, they went for a walk.
Correction: The weather was cold; however, they went for a walk.

Use a semicolon before "however" to separate two independent clauses.

7. He is not only intelligent, but also hardworking.
Correction: He is not only intelligent but also hardworking.

Remove the comma between "intelligent" and "but."

8. Neither does she like ice cream nor does she like cake.
Correction: Neither does she like ice cream, nor does she like cake.

Add a comma after "ice cream" to separate the two clauses.

9. I would like to attend the conference, yet I cannot afford the registration fee.
Correction: I would like to attend the conference, but I cannot afford the registration fee.

Use "but" instead of "yet" to show contrast.

10. She speaks not only English, but also she speaks Chinese.
Correction: She speaks not only English but also Chinese.

Remove "she speaks" after "but also" to maintain parallelism.

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