Advantages of Parallelism

Parallel sentences have several advantages. First, they are impressive and pleasing to hear, elaborate yet rhythmic and ordered, following a master plan with a place for everything and everything in its place. Second, parallelism is economical, using one element of a sentence to serve three or four others. Piling up several verbs after a single subject is probably the most common parallel pattern, as in the two examples just above. Paralleling verbs is particularly effective when describing a...

The Segregating Style

At its purest the segregating sentence is grammatically simple, expressing a single idea.1 A segregating style consists of a series of such sentences. In practice the style is rarely confined 1. Idea is a slippery word. Here it means simply one subject plus one predication about that subject The night was dark expresses a single idea. Most sentences consist of several The night was dark, and it was lonely. Or, with the two predications more closely connected The night was dark and lonely. to...

The Purpose of Punctuation

All punctuation exists, basically, to help readers understand what you wish to say. Mostly marks of punctuation do this by signaling the grammatical or logical structure of a sentence usually these are the same In the long history of the world men have given many reasons for killing each other in war envy of another people's good bottom land or of their herds, ambition of chiefs and kings, different religious beliefs, high spirits, revenge. Rulh Benedict The colon divides this sentence into its...

The Freight Train Style

Several kinds of sentences do what the segregating style does not is, combine ideas. The simplest of these is the freight-train style, so called because it couples short, independent clauses to make longer sequential statements. It is a development of the compound sentence see page and has an old and honored history And the rain descended and the floods came, and the winds blew, and beat upon the house and it fell and great was the fall of it. The freight-train sentence has several virtues. It...