IS THIS A RUN ON SENTENCE? IF IT IS, WHY?

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If something displays life characteristics, then it is a life form and it is studied by a biologist. 

run on sentences asked Aug 17 '13 at 12:13 MICHAEL ANZELONE New member

2 answers


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Sanjay is correct, and here is why.

 If something displays life characteristics - this an introductory phrase. Let's look at the main clauses of the sentence separately.

It is a life form and it is studied by a biologist.

This is a compound sentence which is two independent clauses join by a conjunction (and). Grammar rules require a comma at the end of the first clause.

 

If something displays life characteristics, then it is a life form, and it is studied by a biologist.

 

A slight change would change the compound sentence to a sentence with a compound verb, and a comma would not be needed. The sentence would also read a little smoother. Removing the second instance of the word 'it' would make the first 'it' be the subject of both verbs.

 

If something displays life characteristics, then it is a life form and is studied by a biologist.

link comment answered Aug 17 '13 at 22:24 Lewis Neidhardt Grammarly Fellow
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I think you need a comma after the word "life form".

If something displays life characteristics, then it is a life form, and it is studied by a biologist. 

link comment answered Aug 17 '13 at 15:31 Sanjay Expert

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