1. Mercurial
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    Mercurial Contributing Member Contributor

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    "Too."

    Discussion in 'Word Mechanics' started by Mercurial, Feb 7, 2009.

    I always have trouble with this one. I often add the word "too" at the end of a sentence, but I get confused on whether a comma is needed or not. Is it ever needed? I was never taught that a comma was needed before a "too" at the end of a sentence, but is it okay to put a comma before that "too" in some cases?

    Example 1: Everyone has his best friend, and I do too. <-- No comma needed.
    Example 2: I love teddy bears, too! <-- Comma needed? If the comma is unnecessary, is it still grammatically acceptable?

    Can anyone clarify for me when it's necessary, acceptable, etc to use a comma before this short adverb?
     
  2. garmar69
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    garmar69 Contributing Member Contributor

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    I'm pretty sure you have to use the comma, like the second sentence.

    I hate that adverb unless it's used in a sentence like this. That is too much food.

    I prefer to use 'also', or 'as well'.

    Just a personal preference--not a rule.

    .
     
  3. perylousdemon
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    perylousdemon Member

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    The comma is required in the second sentence. If you were to use "as well" or "also" (as garmar69 prefers to do), then you wouldn't need one.
     
  4. marina
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    marina Contributing Member Contributor

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    Using a comma before the word "too" at the end of a sentence is optional. You won't find a strict rule about it anywhere (I just checked my books and the Internet and came up with nothing). You do see a comma frequently used, however, when the writer is emphasizing something.

    For example:

    "I washed, dried, and folded the clothes. I put them away, too." [The way I read this is that the writer is stressing that he even went so far as to put away the clothes - he went the second mile.]

    I washed, dried, and folded the clothes. I put them away too. [He's simply stating he also put the clothes away. It's not a big deal to him, though.]
     
  5. Mercurial
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    Mercurial Contributing Member Contributor

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    :) Thank you, this answered all of the questions I had. I just wanted to make sure that I wasnt making any grammatical errors by adding in the comma; it's the way I speak, so I naturally inserted it into my text.

    Am I right in assuming that this also applies to other short adverbs? For instance, the word "either."
    Example: I didnt write that letter to her, and I didnt call her, either.

    Thank you very much!
     
  6. marina
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    marina Contributing Member Contributor

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    I would think so - that it's a matter of context, but it's still just optional.
     
  7. Atari
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    Atari Active Member

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    Actually, your two examples were exactly how I see it.

    Commas have rules, but they are just as much judgment on the writer's part.

    Saying, "I love you too," does not seem to need a comma, whereas, "Don't you want to go, too?" does seem to need one.

    I learned from someone that if you do not need one to have the sentence read properly, then do not add one, because it can cause your reader to read the sentence differently than you intended.
     
  8. architectus
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    architectus Banned

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    "I washed, dried, and folded the clothes. I put them away, too."

    I'm not sure why, but the sentence reads the same to me with or without the comma before too. If I wanted to stress that it was a big deal, I would write: I washed, dried, and folded the clothes. I even put them away. If it wasn't a big deal, I would probably write: I washed, dried, folded, and put the clothes away. Or and then*

    Maybe my brain is not conditioned enough yet to recognize the differences in a sentence's meaning with such a subtle change with a comma. However, I do see the difference in the following sentence if the comma is removed.

    She sat on the sofa, talking to her mother.

    With out the comma, it means she sat on the sofa that was talking to her mother, lol. Hey, at least my brain picks up on that.
     
  9. Mercurial
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    Mercurial Contributing Member Contributor

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    When the comma is there before short adverbs like "too" or "either" or "instead," I read it with a slight pause in the sentence, like you pause where a comma would be written in text. I always pause before those short adverbs, so I naturally added a comma there, but I wasnt sure if it was technically the correct way to write it. :)

    It doesnt change the definition of the sentence, but I think with a comma before the last word, it sounds a little more pointed and emphasized. Like, "I did this, and this, and this, and this, TOO."

    I never noticed how often I use these short adverbs, and the commas before them until I asked the question. :)
     

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