Recently I found myself in a situation where I was unsure about comma usage. The sentence was Cereals can be extremely nutritious, for example, Frosted Flakes.

Now is the usage of the comma before and after for example incorrect? I am not particularly concerned about whether or not there is a better way to rephrase the sentence, but I want to know whether it is grammatically correct for me to place the commas there or not. If so, can somebody explain why.

  • There's a handful of ways to punctuate this sentence. This is one of them. None of them are grammatically correct or grammatically incorrect, however. Punctuation is not grammar. This sen, tence;righthere Is PER!!!!!fectly grammatical English. "Grammar" is not a catch-all term to mean "anything and everything related to language". It has a very specific meaning. And commas are in no way, shape or form part of that meaning. For starters, there's no commas in speech. And no letters, for that matter.
    – RegDwigнt
    Commented Jun 13, 2018 at 13:24
  • The sentence would look and sound very odd without a comma before 'for example'. Commented Jun 13, 2018 at 14:51

1 Answer 1


‘...nutritious, for example Frosted Flakes.’

I believe that would be the proper punctuation without any restructuring of your sentence.

  • Why would you think so?
    – Kris
    Commented Jun 13, 2018 at 13:09
  • Honestly, because it looks correct that way. I don’t study grammar (or punctuation @RegDwight :D) so I’m not sure what the reason would be. I do read/write a lot, however, and have a natural inclination for editing.
    – Nathan
    Commented Jun 13, 2018 at 15:49
  • If there were multiple cereals listed as examples, it would be written “...nutritious, for example Frosted Flakes and Cheerios”; or “...Flakes, Cheerios, and Lucky Charms.”
    – Nathan
    Commented Jun 13, 2018 at 15:55
  • It's more common to use a comma both before and after for example. There is no proper punctuation here (it's a matter of style), but your punctuation is uncommon and shouldn't be suggested as how it should be done. Commented Jun 13, 2018 at 17:18

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