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Hi,

I am still having some trouble putting a comma or two for multiple adjectives. A previous post went pretty far in describing the general rules involved but partially due to my own fault, I could grasp the crux of it. For those with generous heart, please refer me to a better post or maybe try out yourself here in your gracious soul.

Ex.

I have thin brown hair. (A comma to separate "thin" and "brown"???)
Comments  
Formal written English requires the commas between multiple descriptive adjectives (except for the last pair, which can be separated by and):

I have thin, brown hair.
I have thin, brown, curly hair.
I have thin, brown and curly hair.


Having said that-- short, highly-collocated, and unconfusing adjective sets can be presented without the comma, and no one will notice:

I have thin brown hair.
I live in a big red barn
.
Actually, if the adjectives are of different categories (qualitative, classifying, colors), then you don't put a comma between them. If the adjectives are in the same category, then you do put a comma. Thin and brown are in different categories. Thin is a qualitative and brown is a color. So, you DON'T put a comma between them.
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Which one is correct?
I have thin, brown and curly hair.
I have thin, brown, and curly hair.

Cheers..
Actually, we wouldn't use 'and' at all:

I have thin, brown, curly hair.
ahh.. I see..
what about mentioning a list of stuff, for example:
There were money, credit cards, ID cards, and pictures in my wallet. (comma before "and")
There were money, credit cards, ID cards and pictures in my wallet. (no comma before "and")

Which one is correct?
I've always used the first one, but I see many use the second.

Thanks!
non-native-speaker
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The final comma is called the 'serial' comma' and is favored in British English. You omit it in AmE as long as confusion does not ensue.
AnonymousActually, if the adjectives are of different categories (qualitative, classifying, colors), then you don't put a comma between them. If the adjectives are in the same category, then you do put a comma. Thin and brown are in different categories. Thin is a qualitative and brown is a color. So, you DON'T put a comma between them.
Do you have a good reference to support that claim? To me it seems counter-intuitive because how often does one use two adjs. from the same category to describe something. "It was a red, brown house" - It's either red or brown OR reddish-brown OR brownish-red but never "red, brown". If it is painted red and brown then an "and" is required, "It was a red and brown house".
I'm not saying that you are wrong but I do like to see evidence Emotion: wink
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