Conjunctive Adverbs | List, Definition, Usage and Examples

Conjunctive Adverbs
Conjunctive Adverbs

Conjunctive adverbs are a lesser-known but essential part of the English language. These words connect ideas and phrases within a sentence, helping to clarify meaning and create a smooth flow of thought. These words can be used to indicate addition, contrast, concession, or time. Understanding how to use them correctly can greatly improve the flow and coherence of your writing. In this article, we’ll explore the meaning, usage, and examples of conjunctive adverbs to help you master this grammatical concept. So, let’s get started!

What Are Conjunctive Adverbs?

Conjunctive adverbs are words that connect and relate ideas in a sentence. The word “conjunctive” refers to joining or connecting, and “adverb” describes a word that modifies verbs, adjectives, or other adverbs. Therefore, a conjunctive adverb is a word that connects two independent clauses or sentences and provides additional information about the relationship between them. These adverbs come in various types, such as those expressing contrast (like ‘however’ or ‘nevertheless’), cause and effect (such as ‘therefore’ or ‘consequently’), time sequence (‘meanwhile’ or ‘subsequently’), and comparison (‘similarly’ or ‘likewise’).

For instance, when we say, “She loves reading; however, she doesn’t like science fiction,” the word “however” is a conjunctive adverb showing a contrast between her love for reading and her dislike for science fiction. Unlike coordinating conjunctions (such as “and,” “but,” “or”), conjunctive adverbs are not limited to joining only two clauses; they can be used to link ideas in more complex ways. These adverbs can be placed at the beginning, middle, or end of a sentence and are often used with specific punctuation, like a semicolon before and a comma after.


  • She studied hard; however, the exam was challenging.
  • It rained all day; therefore, the picnic was canceled.
  • She was cooking dinner; meanwhile, he was setting the table.
  • She missed the bus; consequently, she was late for work.
  • It was late; still, they decided to watch one more movie.

How to Use Conjunctive Adverbs?

Understanding how to use conjunctive adverbs correctly is essential for effective communication. Here are some guidelines to follow:

Choose the Right Adverb:

Choose conjunctive adverbs based on the context and the relationship between ideas. Consider whether the connection is one of contrast, addition, cause and effect, etc.

  • If expressing contrast, use words like however or nevertheless. For cause and effect, try therefore or consequently.

Placement in a Sentence

Conjunctive adverbs can appear at various positions in a sentence. They can appear at the beginning, middle, or end of a sentence. The placement depends on the emphasis and the flow you want to achieve. When used at the beginning or in the middle, a semicolon or comma is often needed before them.

  • Beginning: However, I will attend the meeting.
  • Middle: I will, therefore, prepare a presentation.
  • End: I will prepare a presentation; moreover, I’ll share relevant data.


When a conjunctive adverb connects two independent clauses, it is typically preceded by a semicolon (;) and followed by a comma (,). This punctuation pattern helps clarify the relationship between the clauses:

  • She studied hard; however, she didn’t perform well in the exam.


When a conjunctive adverb begins a sentence, it is followed by a comma and is capitalized:

  • Moreover, the results of the experiment were consistent.

Connecting Ideas

Conjunctive adverbs are versatile and can connect not only complete sentences but also elements within a sentence. Consider the following examples:

  • She worked late into the night; therefore, she completed the project on time.

Common Conjunctive Adverbs

However: Used to show contrast or unexpected results.

  • Example: She studied hard; however, she didn’t perform well in the exam.

Therefore: Indicates a consequence or conclusion.

  • Example: The weather was rainy; therefore, the picnic was canceled.

Moreover: Adds information to the existing point.

  • Example: The team won the championship; moreover, they set a new record.

Meanwhile: Highlights a simultaneous occurrence of events.

  • Example: He was cooking dinner; meanwhile, she was setting the table.

Nevertheless: Expresses contrast or opposition to the previous statement.

  • Example: The movie was long; nevertheless, it was captivating.

Furthermore: Adds more information to support the preceding idea.

  • Example: I enjoy swimming; furthermore, it’s a great way to stay fit.

Consequently: Shows a cause-and-effect relationship.

  • Example: They missed the bus; consequently, they were late for the meeting.

Otherwise: Implies what will happen if a certain condition is not met.

  • Example: Study hard; otherwise, you might not pass the exam.

Similarly: Indicates a similarity between two ideas.

  • Example: She enjoys hiking; similarly, her brother loves outdoor activities.

Hence: Denotes a consequence or result.

  • Example: The car broke down; hence, they had to call for help.

Functions of Conjunctive Adverbs

Connecting Ideas

One primary function of conjunctive adverbs is to connect ideas and show the relationship between clauses. For example, consider the sentence: “She studied hard; consequently, she aced the exam.” Here, ‘consequently’ indicates a cause-and-effect relationship between the two clauses.

Expressing Contrast

They also help express the contrast between ideas. Take the sentence: “He wanted to go to the party; however, he had too much work to finish.” In this case, ‘however’ signals a contradiction or unexpected turn of events.

Showing Sequence

Conjunctive adverbs aid in conveying chronological order or sequence in a narrative. For instance, “Firstly, she prepared the ingredients; then, she started cooking.” Here, ‘firstly’ and ‘then’ help organize the events in a logical order.

Providing Examples

These adverbs can introduce examples that support or illustrate the preceding statement. “She loved outdoor activities; for instance, hiking and camping were her favorite pastimes.” In this sentence, ‘for instance’ introduces specific examples of outdoor activities.

Emphasizing Points

They can be used for emphasis, drawing attention to a particular point. “Indeed, the view from the mountaintop was breathtaking.” In this example, ‘indeed’ emphasizes the stunning nature of the view.

Indicating Time

They play a role in indicating time relationships between clauses. “He finished his homework; meanwhile, she went for a jog.” Here, ‘meanwhile’ establishes a connection between the actions happening simultaneously.

Conjunctions vs Conjunctive Adverbs

Conjunctions and conjunctive adverbs both connect ideas, but they do so in slightly different ways. Conjunctions, like “and,” “but,” and “or,” directly link words, phrases, or clauses, emphasizing the relationship between them. They are often used to show coordination or subordination. On the other hand, conjunctive adverbs, such as “however,” “therefore,” and “meanwhile,” not only connect but also show the relationship between independent clauses, providing information about the connection. While conjunctions are straightforward connectors, conjunctive adverbs offer more detailed and clear information about the relationship between the connected ideas.

List of Conjunctive Adverbs

  • Accordingly
  • Additionally
  • Admittedly
  • Also
  • Anyway
  • Afterward
  • Besides
  • Certainly
  • Comparatively
  • Consequently
  • Contrarily
  • Conversely
  • Elsewhere
  • Equally
  • Finally
  • Furthermore
  • Hence
  • However
  • Indeed
  • Instead
  • Likewise
  • Meanwhile
  • Moreover
  • Namely
  • Nevertheless
  • Nonetheless
  • Notably
  • Now
  • On the contrary
  • On the other hand
  • Otherwise
  • Similarly
  • Still
  • Subsequently
  • Surprisingly
  • Then
  • Therefore
  • Thus
  • Ultimately
  • Unquestionably
  • Whereas
  • Alternatively
  • Altogether
  • Anyhow
  • All in all
  • Above all
  • As a result
  • As mentioned
  • At the same time
  • Consequently
  • Correspondingly
  • Despite
  • Eventually
  • For example
  • For instance
  • For this reason
  • Henceforth
  • In addition
  • In any case
  • In contrast
  • In fact
  • In conclusion
  • In other words
  • In particular
  • In short
  • In summary
  • In the meantime
  • In turn
  • Incidentally
  • Instead
  • Later
  • Likewise
  • Meanwhile
  • Moreover
  • Nevertheless
  • Next
  • Nonetheless
  • Notwithstanding
  • Now
  • Otherwise
  • Overall
  • Plus
  • Similarly
  • Specifically
  • Basically
  • Clearly
  • Exclusively

Example Sentences

  • I wanted to go to the park; however, it started raining.
  • They went shopping; meanwhile, I stayed home and relaxed.
  • She doesn’t like coffee; instead, she prefers tea.
  • They were lost in the city; hence, they asked for directions
  • I enjoy writing; therefore, I started a blog.
  • I prefer tea; conversely, my friend likes coffee.
  • I love summer; moreover, I enjoy swimming in the pool.
  • She woke up late; consequently, she missed the bus.
  • I dislike spicy food; in addition, it upsets my stomach.
  • He forgot his lunch; nevertheless, he wasn’t hungry.
  • I love traveling; similarly, my best friend enjoys exploring new places.
  • I don’t like horror movies; instead, I prefer comedies.
  • I like to exercise; therefore, I go to the gym regularly.
  • The store was closed; however, they found another one nearby.
  • The book is interesting; moreover, it’s quite informative.

Conjunctive Adverbs Exercise

1. What is a conjunctive adverb?

  1. A connecting word
  2. A descriptive adjective
  3. A punctuation mark
  4. A proper noun

2. Which of the following is a conjunctive adverb indicating contrast?

  1. And
  2. Therefore
  3. However
  4. Moreover

3. Choose the conjunctive adverb that shows cause and effect:

  1. Similarly
  2. Consequently
  3. Furthermore
  4. Nonetheless

4. What does the conjunctive adverb “meanwhile” indicate?

  1. Addition
  2. Contrast
  3. Sequence
  4. Cause and effect

5. Which conjunctive adverb is used to add information?

  1. Therefore
  2. Furthermore
  3. Meanwhile
  4. Otherwise

6. What punctuation is typically used before a conjunctive adverb?

  1. Colon (:)
  2. Comma (,)
  3. Period (.)
  4. Exclamation mark (!)

7. Which is not a conjunctive adverb?

  1. Furthermore
  2. But
  3. Instead
  4. Quickly

8. Which conjunctive adverb is used for adding information?

  1. Thus
  2. Additionally
  3. Hence
  4. Nevertheless

9. Which conjunctive adverb is used to emphasize a point?

  1. Moreover
  2. Nonetheless
  3. Meanwhile
  4. Similarly

10. Choose the correct conjunction for the following sentence: “She wanted to go out; ____, it was raining.”

  1. However
  2. Moreover
  3. Because
  4. So


  1. A connecting word
  2. However
  3. Consequently
  4. Sequence
  5. Furthermore
  6. Comma (,)
  7. Quickly
  8. Additionally
  9. Moreover
  10. However


Q1: What is a conjunctive adverb?

A conjunctive adverb is a connecting word that joins two independent clauses or sentences, providing a bridge between ideas. It helps indicate relationships such as contrast, addition, cause and effect, time, and more.

Q2: What are some common examples of conjunctive adverbs?

Common conjunctive adverbs include “however,” “nevertheless,” “consequently,” “furthermore,” “moreover,” “meanwhile,” “nonetheless,” “similarly,” “otherwise,” and “therefore.”

Q3: How do conjunctive adverbs differ from coordinating conjunctions?

While both conjunctive adverbs and coordinating conjunctions connect ideas, conjunctive adverbs offer a wider range of connections and transitions. They are more flexible in showing various relationships, whereas coordinating conjunctions like “and,” “but,” and “or” are more limited in their roles.

Q4: Give some examples of conjunctive adverbs.

Here are some examples of conjunctive adverbs:

  • However, she didn’t want to go to the party.
  • He’s smart. Furthermore, he’s hardworking.
  • Meanwhile, I’ll finish my homework.
  • She wanted to travel; she saved money, therefore.
  • We were late; consequently, we missed the bus.

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