Say it aloud: "Pause." A simple sentence is a collection of words that has only one independent clause. The primary distinction between simple and complex sentences is that a simple sentence has a single clause, whereas a compound sentence contains two or more clauses. Every complex sentence consists of two or more simple sentences joined together with punctuation.
Here are some other examples of simple sentences: "Mom loves Dad." "I like green eggs and ham." "Pigs can't fly." "Socks win arguments." "Boys don't cry."
Simple sentences are easy to understand because there is only one idea being expressed at a time. Within each simple sentence, all the parts work together to show how one thing leads to another or explains what is going on. For example, in the first sentence, "Mom loves Dad," the word "love" leads to the conclusion that she likes him. In the second sentence, "I like green eggs and ham" shows that I am a happy person who enjoys eating green eggs and ham. In the third sentence, "Pigs can't fly." does not explain anything since we already know that pigs are animals that can't fly. It just states an obvious fact. In the fourth sentence, "Socks win arguments." this statement gives us a reason why boys don't cry: socks make them feel comfortable when they are hurt.
A compound sentence is one that has at least two separate clauses that are connected by a comma, semicolon, or conjunction. An independent sentence is one that has both a subject and a verb and constitutes a full notion. "This home is too pricey, and that house is too little," for example, is a compound phrase. "This home is too pricey" is the compound sentence because it is made up of two separate sentences: one describing this home and one describing how pricey it is. The other phrase in the compound sentence is also a compound sentence because it is made up of two separate phrases: one describing this house and another describing how little it is.
Compound sentences can be further divided into two categories based on the position of the commas: internal and external. In an internal compound sentence, the commas surround the whole compound sentence. "My brother, who is also my friend, lives in California," for example, would be expressed as follows: My brother, who is also my friend, lives in California. In an external compound sentence, the commas only surround the more important part of the sentence, such as the first part that describes your brother or the second part that describes his living situation. "Brother, who is also my friend, lives in California," for example, would be expressed as follows: Brother lives in California.
In general, sentences become compounds when they include two or more ideas linked by and surrounded with commas.
Simple propositions are declarative phrases without a connective. A compound proposition is a proposition that is made up of many assertions. For example, "John is smart; Mary is pretty" is a simple proposition because it is one sentence that makes only one assertion.
Simple propositions are used to state facts or ideas that do not require a response from the listener. For example, "It's cold outside" is a simple proposition. "Thank you for giving me a ride home" is a simple proposition that expresses gratitude. "I love you" is a complex proposition that contains several assertions about its speaker's feelings toward another person.
Simple propositions can be divided into two categories: general statements and specific questions. General statements are easy to prove true or false because they apply to everyone or every group. These include all-time favorites such as "All men are created equal," and historical events such as "Columbus discovered America." Specific questions usually need more information than is given by a simple statement. For example, when asked "Are you married?" someone could answer "Yes" or "No." If further details were needed, such as the name of your spouse or the date you got married, then the questioner would have to be informed of these additional facts before being able to answer correctly.