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General Writing and Grammar Help/please answer this one again


You will notice that I did not use a comma before "again." My question relates to an answer you gave to a questioner, in which you stated that the rule "requiring" a comma holds, although it is not commonly honored.  I have consulted several sources over this issue and you are the only source that insists on a comma before the a simple adverb, "again" (unless, of course, a particular emphasis is intended, such as in "David is late, again").  What is your source for this rule?

As one "expert" put it, "If an adverbial is obligatorily required to complete the sense of the verb, then there canít be a comma."  In my subject line, I am requesting a re-answering of the question; therefore, the word "again" is required to communicate my meaning, and should not be preceded by a comma.

Please comment. I'm not trolling you, I really want to understand.



I checked my recently answered questions and my memory and didn't find anything about an again-question. Perhaps, you have me confused with another expert.

To answer the question, I see no reason for a comma before again since it is strictly an adverb that modifies answer.

I never remember stating that rule to anyone!


Jerry Leone

P.S. Give me the name or date on the question and I will check further.  

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Jerry Leone


I`ve taught writing or some aspect of the English language for nearly 35 years. I can answer nearly any question on grammar, usage or meanings of words above dictionary usage. An avid crossword fan and writer, I can also answer questions about business presentations and resumes.


I have worked with words all my life as a teacher of the language and as an amateur and professional writer. Communication is a vital force in my life and everyone else's.

Sigma Delta Chi, NY Press Association, NY Publishers Association

BA in English from the University of Buffalo, MEd in English from SUNY Buffalo, MA in English Literature from SUNY Buffalo. Course work in Journalism from Syracuse Univ., in Linguistics from Rutgers Univ. and Journalism from Univ. of Texas and Ohio Univesrity.

Awards and Honors
Chancellor's Award for Excellence Teaching SUNY, Distinguished Teaching Award SUNY Morrisville, Who's Who in American Journalism Education

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