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fused sentence


fused sentence

A sentence in which two independent clauses are run together (or "fused") without an appropriate conjunction or mark of punctuation between them.

In prescriptive grammar, fused sentences (also known as run-on sentences) are generally treated as errors.

See also:

Examples and Observations:

  • You can only be young once you can be immature forever.

  • " . . . I hate people that have always their poor story to tell everybody has their own troubles that poor Nancy Blake died a month ago of acute pneumonia well I didn't know her so well as all that she was Floeys friend more than mine . . ."
    (James Joyce, Ulysses, 1922)

  • A wise man makes his own decisions an ignorant man follows public opinion.

  • "Adding a period between the clauses is one way to correct a run-on sentence. . . . Other options are to add a comma and a coordinating conjunction (and, but, for, or, nor, so, yet) between the clauses, to add a semicolon, or to add a semicolon with a conjunctive adverb, such as therefore or however."
    (Gerald Alred, et al., Handbook of Technical Writing. Bedford, 2006)

  • "The distinction between a run-on sentence and a comma splice isn't usually noteworthy. So most writers class the two problems together as run-on sentences.

    "But the distinction can be helpful in differentiating between the wholly unacceptable (true run-on sentences) and the usually-but-not-always unacceptable (comma splices) when (1) the clauses are short and closely related, (2) there is no danger of a miscue, and (3) the context is informal. Thus, 'Jane likes him, I don't.' But even when all three criteria are met, some readers are likely to object."
    (Bryan A. Garner, Garner's Modern American Usage. Oxford Univ. Press, 2003)

  • "The deliberate use of the run-on sentence can sometimes achieve special effects in informal contexts and in representations of colloquial speech. Writers should take care, however, when attempting to use run-on sentences in this way in formal contexts. These uses may easily be interpreted as mistakes or silliness."
    (The American Heritage Guide to Contemporary Usage and Style. Houghton Mifflin, 2005)
Also Known As: run-on sentence, run-together sentence
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