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Placement of comma Options
Koh Elaine
Posted: Sunday, December 2, 2018 2:10:07 PM
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a title given to the founder of Buddhism, Siddartha Gautama ( circa 563– circa 460 bc ) . Born a prince in what is now Nepal, he renounced wealth and family to become an ascetic, and after achieving enlightenment while meditating, taught all who came to learn from him.

Shouldn’t the highlighted comma be after “an” instead?

Thanks
thar
Posted: Sunday, December 2, 2018 2:49:25 PM

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No, you mean an, ascetic? No, 'an ascetic' has to be treated as one unit.
Ah, I think it is a typo. If you mean after 'and' then, yes, that would be a better place. It would make a simple extractable phrase. But....

There are two many commas in this sentence, which makes it too choppy and stilted.
They are not each in themselves wrong, but there are just too many of them.

At the moment it is just these sentences joined together with 'and'.

Born a prince in what is now Nepal, he renounced wealth and family to become an ascetic.
And
After achieving enlightenment while meditating, he taught all who came to learn from him.


You could make the 'after achieving enlightenment while meditating' as extra information, as you suggest.

Born a prince in what is now Nepal, he renounced wealth and family to become an ascetic and, after achieving enlightenment while meditating, taught all who came to learn from him.

But that is not really extra information - it is rather important is explaining why he felt he had something to teach. If you take it away the sentence is not the core idea in itself.

Born a prince in what is now Nepal, he renounced wealth and family to become an ascetic and taught all who came to learn from him.

(There were lots of ascetics - this doesn't emphasise what he had to teach that was special).

My opinion: it would be better not to try to cram it all into one sentence, but to use a variety of structures if you want to make the language more varied.
eg
Facts:
He was born a prince in what is now Nepal.
What he did:
He renounced his wealth and family and lived as an ascetic.
What happened, that is of interest in this context:
After achieving enlightenment while meditating, he [became a teacher and] taught all who came to learn from him.

You can join the first two together, as this text has done. But adding the third is pushing it. It is not like full stops and capital letters are rationed!
Koh Elaine
Posted: Sunday, December 2, 2018 3:04:52 PM
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Joined: 7/4/2012
Posts: 4,515
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Thanks, thar, for the explanation.

Ah, I think it is a typo. If you mean after 'and' then, yes, that would be a better place. It would make a simple extractable phrase. But...

You're right. It should be after 'and'.
Drag0nspeaker
Posted: Monday, December 3, 2018 3:21:56 AM

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Location: Livingston, Scotland, United Kingdom
In order to make the sentence a little less 'formidable', one could vary the punctuation marks used for the 'extractable' data. A sentence with several commas can appear confusing to read - even when all the commas are correct!

The Buddha - a title given to the founder of Buddhism, Siddartha Gautama ( circa 563– circa 460 bc ) . Born a prince in what is now Nepal, he renounced wealth and family to become an ascetic and (after achieving enlightenment while meditating) taught all who came to learn from him.


Wyrd bið ful aræd - bull!
Koh Elaine
Posted: Monday, December 3, 2018 12:16:03 PM
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Joined: 7/4/2012
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Neurons: 18,409
Thanks, thar and DragOnspeaker.
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