Conjunctive Adverbs in English

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Conjunctive adverbs help writers express ideas more naturally and fluidly. We use them in the same way as coordinating conjunctions and semicolons. They're quite common in English and are used to show the relationship between two ideas.

In this reference, we’ll explore the different examples of conjunctive adverbs, provide handy rules, and discuss how to use them correctly.

What are Conjunctive Adverbs?

Conjunctive adverb definition: “words used to connect two independent clauses or sentences.”

They help us express a range of relationships between ideas, such as cause and effect, contrast, and result. Conjunctive adverbs are often preceded by a semicolon and followed by a comma. We use them to join two independent clauses in complex sentences.

The most common conjunctive adverbs include: however, therefore, moreover, nevertheless, thus, otherwise, and finally.

Here is what it can look like in a sentence:

“I was tired; however, I decided to go for a walk.”

In this sentence, the conjunctive adverb "however" is used to show contrast. The first clause states that the speaker was tired, while the second clause explains that they decided to go for a walk anyway.

Types of Conjunctive Adverbs

Conjunctive adverbs can be divided into three categories: addition, contrast, and result.

1. Conjunctive adverbs of Addition

Addition conjunctive adverbs are used to show that one idea has been added to another. These include words like “furthermore”, “additionally”, and “moreover”.

Here is what it can look like in a sentence:

“I had already finished my homework; moreover, I had studied for the upcoming test.”

In this sentence, the conjunctive adverb "moreover" is used to show addition. The first clause states that the speaker had already finished their homework, while the second clause explains that they had also studied for the upcoming test.

2. Conjunctive Adverbs of Contrast

Contrast conjunctive adverbs are used to show that two ideas are in opposition. These include words like “however”, “on the other hand”, and “nevertheless”.

Here is what it can look like in a sentence:

“I wanted to stay at home; however, my friends convinced me to go out.”

In this sentence, the conjunctive adverb "however" is used to show contrast. The first clause states that the speaker wanted to stay at home, while the second clause explains that their friends convinced them to go out.

3. Conjunctive Adverbs of Result

Result conjunctive adverbs are used to show that one idea is the result of another. These include words like “therefore”, “consequently”, and “thus”.

Here is what it can look like in a sentence:

"I had not studied for the test; consequently, I did not do well."

In this sentence, the conjunctive adverb "consequently" is used to show the result. The first clause states that the speaker had not studied for the test, while the second clause explains that they did not do well on it as a result.

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Conjunctive Adverb Examples

Now that we’ve discussed the types of conjunctive adverbs, let’s see some more  examples:

  • "We had no other option; therefore, we decided to take the risk."
  • "He was running late; however, he still managed to make it on time."
  • “She was very ill; consequently, she had to stay in bed all day.”

You can also combine conjunctive adverbs with other coordinating conjunctions.

  • "I was very tired; yet, I still went out with my friends."
  • “He had tons of work to do; nevertheless, he still took the time to help me.”

In addition, you can try using conjunctive adverbs to express a contrast between two ideas:

  • "He was very popular; nevertheless, he was still a loner."
  • “She was very successful; however, she was not satisfied with her life.”

Conjunctive Adverb List

Below is a list of common conjunctive adverbs:

  • Furthermore
  • Moreover
  • Additionally
  • Also
  • Besides
  • Similarly
  • However
  • Nevertheless
  • Nonetheless
  • On the other hand
  • Yet
  • Instead
  • Therefore
  • Consequently
  • Thus
  • Hence
  • Otherwise
  • Finally

Conjunctive adverbs sentences

Now that you have a conjunctive adverb list, let’s discuss how to use them correctly. To use conjunctive adverbs correctly, you must first understand the relationship between the two independent clauses or sentences that you’re connecting.

For example, if you’re connecting two ideas that are in opposition, you’d use a contrast conjunctive adverb like “however”. Alternatively, if you’re connecting two similar ideas, you’d use an addition conjunctive adverb like “moreover”.

To use conjunctive adverbs correctly, you must also remember to include a semicolon before the conjunctive adverb and a comma after it. For example, “I was feeling too tired to go to the gym; therefore, I decided to stay home.”

Lastly, it’s important to remember that conjunctive adverbs are not the same as coordinating conjunctions. Coordinating conjunctions (for, and, nor, but, or, yet, so) are used to connect two independent clauses without a semi-colon. For example, “I was feeling too tired to go to the gym, so I decided to stay home.”

Avoid overuse!

Conjunctive adverbs make sentences more interesting and provide clarity to your writing. However, it’s important to avoid overusing them. When they come up too often, conjunctive adverbs can make sentences sound repetitive and stilted.

For example, “I was feeling too tired to go to the gym; however, I still wanted to get some exercise. Therefore, I decided to take a walk around the neighborhood. Moreover, it was a nice day outside.”

This sentence would sound better if it were written as “I was feeling too tired to go to the gym, but I still wanted to get some exercise, so I decided to take a walk around the neighborhood. After all, it was a nice day outside.”

Types of conjunctive adverbs

Summary

Conjunctive adverbs are words used to connect two independent clauses or sentences. They are used to express a range of relationships between ideas, such as cause and effect, contrast, and result. Conjunctive adverbs can be divided into three categories: addition, contrast, and result. To use them correctly, you must first understand the relationship between the two ideas that you’re connecting and then use the appropriate conjunctive adverb.

You must also remember to include a semicolon before conjunctive adverbs and a comma after them. Try incorporating conjunctive adverbs into your writing to make your sentences more natural and fluid!

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Comments

Just clareDec 7th, 2023
Overall, this article is a valuable resource for enhancing my understanding and usage of conjunctive adverbs in English.