Two words you’ll hear gram­mar­i­ans throw out are clause and phrase. What’s the dif­fer­ence?

In short, a clause con­tains a sub­ject doing the verb while a phrase doesn’t.

Take this sen­tence for exam­ple.

For the first time in 11 years, I ate fried chick­en.

In this exam­ple, every­thing before the com­ma is a phrase and every­thing after the com­ma is a clause (I is the sub­ject and ate is the verb the sub­ject is doing.

Clear as mud?

About Kim Siever

I am a copy­writer and copy­ed­i­tor. I blog on writ­ing tips most­ly, but I some­times throw in my thoughts about run­ning a small busi­ness.

Fol­low me on Twit­ter at @hotpepper.

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