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She went to the doctor; she felt sick.

I understand that independent clauses can stand alone as sentences. But, would it be incorrect to say that an independent clause is not a sentence because it's part of a compound sentence? For instance in the example above, are both clauses not sentences? Or are they each a sentence that makes up a compound sentence?

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    The exact definition of the term 'sentence' has never been standardised: formal and functional definitions exist. These would lead to the answers 'no' and 'yes' respectively. – Edwin Ashworth Jun 24 '17 at 7:48
  • I'd define an independent clause as one that is not dependent on any other element in the sentence and thus can (typically) stand alone as a sentence. – BillJ Jun 24 '17 at 8:57
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All independent clauses are sentences on their own.

According to traditional grammar, independent clauses are also called main clauses.

An independent clause (or main clause) is a clause that can stand by itself as a simple sentence. An independent clause contains a subject and a predicate and makes sense by itself.

And a main clause (or an independent clause) is always a sentences on its own because it always has at its center a predicate.

A clause that can form a complete sentence standing alone, having a subject and a predicate.

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    You might need to go stronger than can to establish the point. Just because it can doesn't mean it (always) does. – Lawrence Jun 24 '17 at 10:41
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    Would you say that someone who calls 'She went to the doctor; she felt sick.' a sentence is wrong? – Edwin Ashworth Jun 24 '17 at 11:23

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