In an essay I recently wrote, I wrote the following two sentences: "Natural selection. By examining the meaning of each of these words, the meaning of the entire phrase becomes pellucid: natural selection is the selection of traits by nature."
I understand that "natural selection" by itself is not a complete sentence and is therefore a fragment; however, i wanted there to be a pause, so that the reader stopped for a moment and reflected on the phrase before continuing to read. I feel like I've read this kind of structure before, but I feel like making natural selection its own sentence by using a period is not correct grammar. Is there a way I could change this? Would a dash or colon instead of a period make the sentence(s) more correct?
English/Grammar - marcie, Monday, November 17, 2008 at 6:34pm
I get what you mean about that and i would leave the period but it depends... what come before that sentence?
English/Grammar - Kelly, Monday, November 17, 2008 at 6:45pm
It was the start of a new paragraph; the sentence concluding the previous paragraph was: "The addition of this phrase added an entirely new dimension to Darwin's work; even though Darwin added this new descriptive term to further clarify the original title, "survival of the fittest" invoked feelings of competition and superiority that "natural selection" did not."
English/Grammar - Writeacher, Monday, November 17, 2008 at 6:45pm
Kelly -- Use a colon (:) instead of the period after "selection."
English/Grammar - Anonymous, Monday, November 17, 2008 at 8:10pm
Thank you, I had a feeling that was more correct; however, I then end up with two colons in one sentence. Is this incorrect? I've never run into a situation in which I needed to use more than one.
English/Grammar - marcie, Monday, November 17, 2008 at 7:06pm
i think you would use a colon too