Think of the semi-colon as a flashing red light. You must stop but can usually go on quickly.

Semi-colons are used in two ways:

  1. In a sentence, a semi-colon can join two complete sentences that are related and make them into one sentence.
    • "Ask not what your country can do for you; ask what you can do for your country."
  2. Semi-colons are used to help emphasize the division between items that themselves include commas.
    • I invited Fred Flintstone, from Bedrock; Mork, from Ork; and Roseanne, from Langford, Illinois, to our Halloween party.
    • People flock to Love, Texas; Cupid Falls, Minnesota; Valentine, Idaho; and Heart, Montana to get their special postmarks for Valentine's Day.

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