The semicolon has probably generated more debate than any other punctuation mark; indeed, some writers go out of their way to avoid using them. However, it is a clever little punctuation mark, with a number of uses. The main function is to create a pause in a sentence, somewhere between a comma and a full stop.
A semicolon is often used to replace conjunctions such as ‘and’ or ‘but’ to create greater emphasis. There are no precise rules for using semicolons; some teachers will be impressed by them whilst others will be more critical.
We have just added a new set of pages on the semicolon, which looks at linking two main clauses that are related to each other, without the use of a conjunction.
Go to English: Grammar: Punctuation (middle/upper primary)