How to Use an Appositive


Check out this post from the Ediket blog on how to use an appositive.

Ediket Blog

“I called my friend, JJ, to tell him about all our plans!” Have you seen sentences like this that re-state the subject? The part that’s offset by commas re-names the subject, giving more specific information. This grammar structure is called an appositive, and you can use it to introduce or clarify the topic you’re writing about.

How do you use them?

Appositives are nouns or noun phrases that tell more about the subject, so there are many instances in which they may be relevant. However, whether you should offset them with commas depends on whether the information is essential to the meaning of the sentence (restrictive) or just extra detail (non-restrictive).

If the restatement is restrictive and is needed to identify the right subject, then no commas are needed (yes to restrictive = no commas). If the restatement is non-restrictive, just extra information, then use…

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3 thoughts on “How to Use an Appositive

  1. Thanks for posting this, Don. It follows up on a post I just did at Just Can’t Help Writing on using commas. I’ve found that people are really confused about the restrictive/non-restrictive issue (essential/nonessential is another set of terms). It’s always good to get another explanation to help people see how the commas work in inserted modifiers! I love the practice examples at the end.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Pingback: More on Commas and Those Pesky Nonessential Modifiers! | Just Can't Help Writing

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