The Compound Sentence

The Compound Sentence contains two or more main or independent clauses.


In Hawaii, a baby's first birthday is traditionally celebrated with the Baby Luau. This special occasion is accompanied by many time-honored rituals.

The Semicolon

The semicolon is used to connect main clauses.

  • The semicolon (;) indicates a complete stop.

  • It can be used to join main clauses that are closely related in content.


The first born child is called hiapo; in the past, a male hiapo was raised by his grandparents; he was referred to as punahele or chosen; over the course of time, he would be responsible for preserving the family's history by memorizing genealogy charts.

The semicolon has a secondary function.

  • The semicolon (;) is used to separate multiple items in a series.

  • It is used when items with commas make it hard to see where one item stops and another begins.


In Korean families, certain items were set on a table in front of the birthday child with the intention of allowing him or her to choose a future path from among things like rice, indicating that there would always be food on the table; noodles which were meant to insure a long life; dried red dates, placed on a dish, that expressed a silent wish for that baby to grow up to bear many children in the future, and a silver dollar to stake a claim on a life of wealth.

The Colon

The colon is used to begin or end a series of related ideas.

  • The colon (:) indicates a complete stop.

  • A series using a colon must be preceded or followed by a main clause.


Other objects placed before the child indicated possible career choices to be followed: selecting a book meant becoming a scholar; picking up a pencil pointed to a career as a writer; grasping a paint brush indicated a desire to become an artist.

  • In the preceding example, the colon (:) at the end of the main clause signals the start of a series.

  • Semicolons (;) separate the main clause items in that series.

Once again, a series using a colon must be preceded or followed by a main clause.



At a birthday celebration for a girl, objects with symbolic associations might include: a doll to indicate the likelihood of her becoming a good mother or a needle and thread to forecast her future role as a talented seamstress.


On the other hand, a boy would be presented with items such as these to choose from: a hammer meant a future as a carpenter, and a miniature shovel spoke of an interest in farming.

Coordinate Connectives

  • Here is a list of coordinate connectives.

  • They should be memorized.
for and nor but or yet so

  • As presented, the first letter of each coordinate connective spells out the words - fan boys.

  • for, and, nor, but, or, yet, so should aid you in memorizing these terms.

  • Use for to indicate a reason for doing something.

  • Use and to indicate a continuation of thought.

  • Use nor to indicate a double negative meaning not this one and not thatone.

  • Use but to indicate a contrast.

  • Use or to indicate an alternative.

  • Use yet to indicate a contrast.

  • Use so to indicate a result.

Primary Functions:

The primary function of coordinate connectives is to join main clauses of equal weight and value.

  • Main clauses can be linked together with a comma and a coordinate connective.

  • Because the written language follows the spoken one, a comma (pause) plus the coordinate connective is used to join main clauses.

  • The coordinate connective is also used to prevent run-on sentences.


Placing symbolic gifts in front of a child to choose from and reading meaning into the first item touched is not all that unusual, for on the Mainland, it was customary to place a slice of bread, a coin, and a Bible in front of a small child to see if health, wealth, or wisdom would be dominant in that young person's future.

If the coordinate connective nor is used to join two main clauses, the second main clause will always have inverted word order, andthe verb will come before the subject.


Foods like hard boiled eggs tinted red and served with sweet pickled ginger as a symbol of new birth, dried aku or tuna, and salted lomi salmon prepared with tomatoes and onions were never in short supply, nor was there a shortage of tables, decorated with ti leaves and flowers, to display colorful foods to their best advantage.

Secondary Functions:

Coordinate connectives are used to join items in a series.

  • If the items in the series are short, simple words or phrases, only commas(pauses) and a coordinate connective are needed to separate them.

  • Current standard usage calls for a comma after the item before last in a series.


A pua'a or kalua pig was quite often the focal point of the edible feast after it had been killed, roasted in an underground oven or imu, and served up to invited guests.

The coordinate and, which links equals, may be used in place of commas to separate related items in a series.


Gifts for the one-year-old guest of honor traditionally include items of clothing and toys wrapped in red paper and money placed inside a red envelope to convey good luck and best wishes to the birthday child.

Coordinate connectives are used to join words of equal weight and value.


Newly composed songs and chants and a wide selection of "ono-licious" foods made the Baby Luau a memorable event and created a desire on the part of the guests to savor the chance to "talk story" with friends and relatives on such a happy occasion.

  • The words songs, chants, and selection are subjects of equal importance in the main clause.

  • The words made and created are verbs of equal importance in the main clause.

  • When slang expressions like "ono-licious" and "talk story" are used in place of regular terms such as tasty and chatting, they are placed in quotes to indicate to the reader that substandard English or catch-phrasing has been deliberately selected for dramatic effect.

Coordinate connectives may also be used to begin a sentence.


And to many people's way of thinking, there is no better way to celebrate the successful completion of a child's first year of life than to attend a luau of this kind.