- the sign (,), a mark of punctuation used for indicating a division in a sentence, as in setting off a word, phrase, or clause, especially when such a division is accompanied by a slight pause or is to be noted in order to give order to the sequential elements of the sentence. It is also used to separate items in a list, to mark off thousands in numerals, to separate types or levels of information in bibliographic and other data, and, in Europe, as a decimal point.
- Classical Prosody.
- a fragment or smaller section of a colon.
- the part of dactylic hexameter beginning or ending with the caesura.
- the caesura itself.
- Music. the minute, virtually unheard difference in pitch between two enharmonic tones, as G♯ and A♭.
- any of several nymphalid butterflies, as Polygonia comma, having a comma-shaped silver mark on the underside of each hind wing.
Origin of comma
Examples from the Web for comma
Power is the subject, and the execution is precise—even if this book will make you miss the comma terribly.Nicholson Baker, Katie Kitamura, and This Week’s Hot Reads: July 30, 2012
July 30, 2012
We have to insert its thin edge at a comma, or else keep still.The Dominant Strain
Anna Chapin Ray
Both a comma and a colon were used and have been retained in this e-book.The Web of the Golden Spider
Frederick Orin Bartlett
Only the first word should be capitalized and a comma is placed at the end.How to Write Letters (Formerly The Book of Letters)
Mary Owens Crowther
The older form of writing an address was to end each line with a comma.The Etiquette of To-day
Edith B. Ordway
A restrictive clause is not separated by a comma from the noun.The Verbalist
Thomas Embly Osmun, (AKA Alfred Ayres)
- the punctuation mark(,) indicating a slight pause in the spoken sentence and used where there is a listing of items or to separate a nonrestrictive clause or phrase from a main clause
- music a minute interval
- short for comma butterfly
Word Origin and History for comma
1520s as a Latin word, nativized by 1590s, from Latin comma "short phrase," from Greek komma "clause in a sentence," literally "piece which is cut off," from koptein "to cut off," from PIE root *kop- "to beat, strike" (see hatchet (n.)). Like colon (n.1) and period, originally a Greek rhetorical term for a part of a sentence, and like them it has been transferred to the punctuation mark that identifies it.
A punctuation mark (,) used to indicate pauses and to separate elements within a sentence. “The forest abounds with oak, elm, and beech trees”; “The bassoon player was born in Roanoke, Virginia, on December 29, 1957.”