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A complex sentence consists of

one independent clause and one or more dependent clauses

independent clause is

a group of words with a verb and a subject that can stand alone.

dependent clause is a

group of words including a subject and verb that cannot stand alone

subordinating conjunctions

a word that shows a relationship between the independent and dependent clauses

when is a comma used when writing a complex sentence

when the dependent clause comes first

a numonic devise is



after, although, as, as if, as long as, as soon as


when, ehenever, where, wherever, while


if, in order that


than, though


even though, even if


because, before


unless, until


since, so that

subordinating conjunctions come at the

beginning of a dependent clause

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