Is Therefore A Conjunction? 5 Facts(When, How & Examples)


Many words are not traditionally conjunctions yet used as conjunctions. Thus, let us check that “therefore” is a traditional conjunction or member of any other part of speech.

The word “therefore” is a traditional “adverb” that is many times used as a “conjunction” in English grammar. Thus, the word “therefore” is called a “conjunctive adverb”.

Now, let us check the facts and explanations of using “therefore” as conjunction.

When is “therefore” a conjunction?

Not all the words which are used as “conjunctions” are true members of the “conjunction” group of parts of speech. Let us see the parts of the speech group of the word “therefore.”

“Therefore” belongs to the group of “adverbs” in English grammar, but it becomes a “conjunctive adverb” when it connects the below-listed parts of English grammar.

  1. It connects two sentences.
  2. It connects two clauses.
  3. It connects two phrases.

Example: The weather is stormy; therefore, we must not try to drive ourselves without a driver.

Explanation:

Therefore, the word “therefore” can certainly be marked as an “adverb” because it connects the independent clause “we must not try to drive ourselves without any driver.” with another independent clause, “The weather is stormy.”

Why is “therefore” a conjunctive adverb?

There are certain rules for using adverbs as “conjunctive adverbs”. Let us check if “therefore” fulfills all the criteria for becoming a “conjunctive adverb” or not.

The word “therefore” is a conjunctive adverb because it fulfills all the below-listed criteria of a conjunctive adverb.

  1. We used to put a semicolon before the conjunctive adverb “therefore” because conjunctive adverbs need punctuation marks to connect sentences.
  2. Most of the time, the conjunctive adverb “therefore” connects two independent clauses or sentences.
  3. We put a comma after the conjunctive adverb “therefore,” while it is placed in front of the second sentence or clause.
  4. Although the word “therefore” is an adverb, it is used to show “consequences”, “as a result”, “contrast”, “clarification” and “provide emphasis” as a conjunctive adverb while connecting the second sentence with the first one.

Example: You ate unhealthy junk foods; therefore, you have gained so much weight.

Explanation:

Therefore, the word “therefore” is certainly a conjunctive adverb because it connects the second independent sentence with the first one to show “consequences”. Here, both the sentences are independent sentences. We have used a semicolon before the conjunctive adverb and a comma after that.

Examples of “therefore” as conjunction-

Let us look at examples of sentences where “therefore” is in use as a “conjunction” –

Serial NumberExampleExplanation
1.It is raining; therefore, we must not hang our clothes in the garden.The adverb “therefore” can certainly be termed a “conjunctive adverb” because it connects two independent clauses to secure the meaning “because of”.
2.My daughter is very naughty; therefore, we always need to keep an eye on her.The adverb “therefore” can certainly be referred to as a “conjunctive adverb” because it connects two independent clauses to secure the meaning “as a result of”.
3.Sandip never studies; therefore, he needs to cover the entire syllabus in one month.The adverb “therefore” can certainly be referred to as a “conjunctive adverb” because it connects two independent clauses to secure the meaning “thus”.
4.The weather is very hot today; therefore, we must drink plenty of water to keep ourselves healthy.The adverb “therefore” can certainly be termed a “conjunctive adverb” because it connects two independent clauses to secure the meaning “because of”.
5.We are going to the mountains; therefore, you must take some woollen clothes with you.The adverb “therefore” can certainly be termed a “conjunctive adverb” because it connects two independent clauses to secure the meaning “because of”.
Examples of “therefore” as conjunction

When is “therefore” not considered as conjunction?

There must not be two conjunctions to connect two sentences. Here lies the key to understanding the situation where “therefore” is not a conjunction but an “adverb”.

“Therefore” can be marked as an “adverb” when it serves the following purposes of an activity instead of connecting two sentences, while any other conjunction is there as a “connector” in the same sentence.

  1. “because of”
  2. “as a result”
  3. “consequence of that”
  4. “the reason behind that”
  5. “on basis of that”

Example: I have taken care of two orphan children from their childhood days, and therefore I have to save money for their higher studies.

Explanation:

The word “therefore” as an “adverb” is used to show the meaning “consequence of that” behind an activity, while the word “and” is in use as “conjunction”.

Examples of “therefore” not considered as conjunctions –

Now, we will go through sentences where the word “therefore” is in use not as “conjunctive adverb” but as an “adverb”.

Serial NumberExampleExplanation
1.I have a pet dog, and therefore I need to take it to the field for physical activities.The word “therefore” as an “adverb” is used to show the meaning “consequence of that” behind a mandatory activity while the word “and” is in use as “conjunction”.
2.Mine loves to cook, and therefore she likes to go to the market to buy fresh vegetables.The word “therefore” as an “adverb”, is used to show the “reason” behind an activity while the word “and” is in use as “conjunction”.
3.The playground has become very dirty, and therefore we are trying to clean the ground by ourselves.The word “therefore” as an “adverb” is used to show the “cause and effect relationship” behind an activity, while the word “and” is in use as “conjunction”.
Examples of “therefore” not considered as conjunctions

Conclusion –

We must be very careful about using “therefore” as an adverb and as a conjunction. We need to put a semicolon before the word “therefore” while using it as a “conjunctive adverb,” but we do not need to put any punctuation before the word “therefore” while using it as an “adverb.

Arpita Bose Roy

Hey! I am Arpita Bose Roy. My qualifications are M.A. in English with  B. Ed. in both general education and special education. I have 2 years of experience as a "language analyst" at IIT Kharagpur and 4 years of experience as an "Academic Content Developer" at IIT Kharagpur. Currently, I am working as an academic writer at Lambdageeks. Let's connect through LinkedIn-https://www.linkedin.com/mwlite/in/arpita-bose-roy-0aa32553

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