English Grammar: Colon vs. Semicolon
1. before a list ( I will buy: a pen, a lighter, and a tape.)
2. before an explanation ( I went to the zoo: my friend needed a companion.)
3. before a conclusion ( After some hours, Sarah cracked the code: It was about a lost treasure buried at sea.)
4. before a definition ( Biology: the study of life)
Use semicolon to give a longer break than what a comma provides without a full stop.
1. to join 2 clauses
I went out; He stayed home.
2. to join sentences with conjunctions in between.
I went out; however, he stayed home.
3. to separate lists that have commas
The ones who came were: John, the student; Joe, the teacher; and Jane, the parent.
4. to separate clauses that have commas
The real cause of their sudden poverty was: he spent all his money on gambling, luxury items, and endless trips.
5 to combine connected sentences
It was so cold; He took off his jacket to warm her up.
Always use a comma for the conjunction "and", never a semicolon.
Right: I loved pie, and, He loved cake.
Wrong: I loved pie; and, he loved cake.