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Grammar and StructureGRAMMAR & STRUCTURE
Adverb Clauses



An adverb clause is a dependent clause that modifies or describes a verb, adjective, or adverb in the independent clause.


When it rains, I wear my hat.


An adverb clause:

  • shows the relationship between the independent clause and the dependent clause. For example, an adverb clause can show:
    - time order.
    - cause and effect.
    - contrast.
    - condition.
  • is introduced by a subordinate conjunction (a kind of linking word).
  • can be placed before or after the independent clause.
  • is followed by a comma when the adverb clause is placed before the independent clause.
  • uses present tense, NOT future tense, when it is showing time order in the future.

Related Sections

Complex Sentences
Independent and Dependent Clauses
Common Linking Words and Their Uses
Commonly Used Punctuation
Sentence Errors — Fragments
Sentence Errors — Run-on Sentences: Part 1
Sentence Errors — Run-on Sentences: Part 2