Comma Simplified: The List Comma

Serial Comma

What I call the List comma, also known as the Serial Comma and Oxford Comma, is the easiest comma to understand and remember. When we write about more than two items, we use it like this:

red, green, and blue 

red, green and blue (The last comma is optional.)

The List comma applies to nouns, verbs, and verb phrases.

Nouns:

He likes ice cream, cake, and candy.

Bob, Gerald, and Jim like candy.

I can’t remember if I liked the green one, blue one, or yellow one.

Give me cake and candy. (No commas)

Verbs:

He ran, jumped, and landed.

He laughed and cried. (no commas)

Verb Phrases:

He ran through the woods, jumped over the river, and landed in a bush.

He slapped his knee and laughed like a hyena. (No commas)

Reasons I use the Comma and And, let’s have supper:

We can have steaks, mashed taters, gravy, and macaroni and cheese.

We can have steaks, mashed taters, gravy and macaroni and cheese.

We can have steaks, mashed taters, macaroni and cheese, and gravy. (This one is the most clear, in my opinion)

We can have steaks, mashed taters, macaroni and cheese and gravy.

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7 Responses to Comma Simplified: The List Comma

  1. Pingback: Musings of a Mild Mannered Man | Steak and Chips #eyeCandySorted

  2. Love the grammatical article!

  3. Pingback: The Dictaphone bard | Adam's Symposium.

  4. Pingback: Simplifying the Comma | My First Fantasy Novel

  5. Pingback: The Dictaphone bard | Adam's Symposium

  6. Pingback: Comma Simplified – The Silly Old Adjective Comma | My First Fantasy Novel

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