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Grammar Details

PHRASE vs CLAUSE - Types of clauses

Phrases Vs Clauses


Phrase = वाक्यांश 

Clause = उपवाक्य


  • A phrase and a clause are different.
  • A phrase is a group of words without a subject-verb unit. (Matlab subect aur verb ek sath nahi honge, subject hoga to verb nahi aur verb hoga to subject nahi.)
  • A clause is a group of words with a subject-verb unit (Marlab subject bhi hoga aur verb bhi hoga).

For Example:

  • After dinner, we ate ice cream. (phrase)
  • After we finished dinner, we ate ice cream. (clause)

Types Of Phrases

There are many types of Phrases:

Noun Phrases, Verb Phrases, Adjective Phrases, Adverbial Phrases, Prepositional Phrases, Gerund Phrases, Infinitive Phrases, Participle Phrases, Absolute Phrases and Appositive Phrases.

What is a clause?

A Clause is a group of words that has both a subject and a predicate. (Remember: A clause must contain a verb.)

There are two main types of clauses:

1. Independent clause (main clause)

2. Dependent clause (subordinate clause)

Independent clause:

An independent clause contains a subject and a verb and makes sense by itself. It expresses a complete thought.

Tip 1: Every time when you write a simple sentence, you write a clause. So, this is known as a simple sentence.

For example:

  • The wind blows. (One independent clause)
  • I teach. (One independent clause)
  • I like tea, and Meera likes coffee. (Two independent clauses)


Tip 2: Coordinating conjunctions [andbutornorforso, and yet (FANBOYS)] don't count as part of the clause.

Dependent clause:

A clause that cannot stand alone. It does not make sense by itself. It depends on the independent clause to make sense. (It is a “dependent.”) It does not express a complete thought.

  • Rohan left in a hurry after he got a phone call.


  • After he got a phone call. (dependent clause) (After is a subordinating conjunction.)
  • He got a phone call. (Without the conjunction, the clause becomes independent.)

There are three types of dependent clause:

  1. noun clauses,
  2. relative clauses (also called adjective clauses), and
  3. adverbial clauses. 

Tip 3: A dependent clause usually begins with a subordinating conjunction (As, because, since, so that, after, as long as etc.) or a relative pronoun (that, which, who, whom, whose).

  • Whenever I travel (Dependent Clause)
  • Whom she met on the train (Dependent Clause)

It depends on the independent clause to make sense.

  • Whenever I travel, I like to meet new people.
  • She was busy talking with a woman whom she met on the train.


Tip 4: Dependent clause can come before, after or in the middle of the independent clause.

  • Whenever I travel, I like to meet new people.
  • She was busy talking with a woman whom she met on the train.
  • Yoga, which a lot of people practise, is a good form of exercise.
  • Have you seen the book I lost? (Have you seen the book [that] I lost?)
  • We missed our train because we were late.

Tip 5: Coordinating conjunctions have a comma (,) before them when they join two independent clauses.

For example:

  • I want to work, but I don’t want to go to office.

Tip 6: when we place the subordinate conjunction in the middle of the sentence, we don’t use a comma. On the other hand, when we place the subordinating conjunction at the beginning of the sentence, we use a comma.

For example:


  • I went to the store since we were out of sugar.
  • Since we were out of sugar, I went to the store.


***The End***

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