I've tried to make compound and complex sentences but I'm not sure they are correct:

1. The UK is the sovereign state that occupies the major part of British Isles the group of islands off the northwest coast of continental Europe that include the islands of Great Britain and Ireland and over six thousand smaller ones.

2. As for the UK the border it is surrounded by the Atlantic Ocean, the North Sea, the English Channel and the Irish Sea apart of the the Northern Ireland which shares a land border with another sovereign state - the Republic of Ireland

3. As UK is constitutional monarchy any bill passed requires Royal Assent to become law but in fact it is just a tribute to the traditions.

4. The executive power is exercised by the cabinet headed by the prime minister, elected by the majority of the House of Commons.

5. The prime minister and cabinet are also formally appointed by the monarch to from Her Majesty's (HM) Government, though the prime minister chooses the cabinet and, by convention, HM The Queen respects the prime minister's choices.

Thanks in advance

In your opinion, which sentences are simple, complex, compound, and/or run-on?
Dear Skif

I shall let you and Alphecca deal with the grammar of your excellent question. However..

1. Yes, there do seem to be over 6,000 UK islands! However, only about 800 of them have a coastline - the rest are very tiny indeed. I owe this information to..


4. The UK prime minister is not elected by the House of Commons. She or he becomes prime minister by being the leader of the political party that gains the majority in the House of Commons at a general election. As you say, this must be formally recognised by the monarch, but the monarch will traditionally respect the general election decision

Best regards, Dave
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dave_anon1. Yes, there do seem to be over 6,000 UK islands! However, only about 800 of them have a coastline - the rest are very tiny indeed.
Would you even call these geographic features islands? Perhaps they are better called "rocky outcrops" or islets. If you follow fractal theory, all of them have a "coastline" if they are above water, but it all depends on the scale of measurement and the sea conditions (tides and waves) at the time of measurement.
P.S. Did they include the Falklands? There's a bunch of them, too!

Here's a toast to small things!Emotion: beerEmotion: beer
Dear Alphecca

I'm sure you are right. There are things that are counted as islands which, at low tide, have negligible coastline - given the scale of measurement - and, at high tide, do not exist at all

I don't think the geographer that I quoted was including islands outside UK waters that are politically owned. I blush to mention them but, factually, I believe they are (including parts of islands): Anguilla, Bermuda, the British Antarctic Territory, the British Indian Ocean Territory, the British Virgin Islands, the Cayman Islands, the Falkland Islands, Gibraltar, Montserrat, the Pitcairn Islands, St. Helena, South Georgia and South Sandwich Islands, the Turks and Caicos Islands, and the Sovereign Base Areas of Akrotiri and Dhekelia

Personally, I'd be happy with the sizable ones within territorial waters; but there you go..

I return your toast Emotion: beer Emotion: beer

I suppose they are:

1. simple

2. complex

3. compound

4. very simple Emotion: smile

5. compound
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I'm afraid we shall have to wait for a teacher to come along. In my view, all the sentences except (4) are complex because they each contain more than one verb. (4) contains additional verbs, but only as participles which count here only as adjectives, I believe.

I would say that compound sentences are quite rare. Even when ideas are connected by "and" there is often a subordinate link between them..

- The prime minister chooses the cabinet and the Queen, by tradition, approves the choice.

[= I would say, complex, because the second part is modifying our idea of the process described in the first part]

A compound sentence, I guess, would be..

- Fish are jumping and the cotton is high.

Sorry I cannot help more - I'm sure others will..

To determine this attribute, you have to find all the clauses - especially the main clauses.

If a sentence has only a main clause, (the subject or predicate can be compound) then it is simple.

If a sentence has two main clauses, connected by a coordinating conjunction, then it is compound.

If a sentence has a main clause and one or more subordinate clauses, then it is a complex sentence.

Finally there is compound-complex.

Here are some references.



Clauses can be discovered by looking for verbs, and then, their subjects. If two or more verbs have the same subject, it is a compound predicate, and counts only as one clause. Example:

Mary drove downtown, parked her car, and walked into the office.

So, let's look in detail at #1. I have put the clauses in parentheses:

1. (The UK is (main verb) the sovereign state (that occupies (verb) the major part of British Isles, the group of islands off the northwest coast of continental Europe (that include (verb) the islands of Great Britain and Ireland and over six thousand smaller ones.)))

So it has three clauses; one main clause and two adjectival dependent clauses.

Thus, it is a complex sentence.