Expressive Punctuation: Semicolons

Basic semicolon examples

Rule; reinforcement.

Here is a similar snippet to the last one, except this time the first clause is short and punchy, and the second clause is more expansive.

In Somalia, family is everything; relationships are as essential as water and milk.

Desert DawnWaris DirieSource

Notice how in the first clause Waris Dirie makes a big claim, almost like stating a rule.

In the second clause she expands on the rule, reinforcing it by using a simile: … relationships are as essential as water and milk.

In Australia, everyone learns to swim; public pools are as common as soccer fields.

In this school, effort is everything; hard work is the only road to success.

I can't stand horror movies; terror is one flavour of ice-cream I don't care to buy.

Your turn
Your turn

Like what you see?

You’re not logged in!

If you want to save your writing, login and either assign this lesson to yourself or access it via your group.