What is an interjection? An interjection is a word or phrase that expresses emotion. Interjections have no grammatical connection with the other words in an English sentence. Interjections are not commonly used in formal or academic writing. Instead, interjections are most commonly used in speech.
What is an Interjection?
Interjections are words or phrases used at the beginning of sentences, especially in dialogue, to express feelings or emotions. However, this doesn’t mean that you cannot use interjections in the middle or end of a sentence.
Interjections are “thrown in” (inter-jected) to express an emotion, such as surprise, excitement, enthusiasm, joy, boredom, confusion, unhappiness or horror. Here are some examples of interjections!
- Ouch, that hurt!
- I have won the lottery, wahoo!
- Watch out! You almost drove through the red light.
- Oh, you can’t be serious.
- It stinks, hey, I will never touch that again!
- Hurrah, we won the final game of the year!
- Oh dear! We have let the cat out of the bag now.
- Ugh, that doesn’t make sense!
- My goodness, what have you done to your hair!
- Phew, that was close!
The Punctuation of Interjections
Interjections that express strong emotion are set off with an exclamation mark and interjections that express mild emotion are set of by a comma.
You can use a comma after the interjection and hold back the exclamation mark to the end of the sentence for strong emotion or you can omit it for mild emotion.
- Wahoo, we got it right the first time!
- Oops, I put the money in the wrong account.
- Bravo! You are now a qualified electrician.
- Holy smokes, we nearly missed the bus!
- ah, I needed that cup of tea.
- Wow! That was a great hit.
- Yippee, Dad has finally decided to let us go to the fun park!
Some Common Interjections
There are many interjections in the English language. Remember, interjections express emotions. Here are some common interjections used frequently in speech.
Interjections are used mostly in spoken language rather than in written language. Therefore, use interjections sparingly in writing. Too many interjections can easily dull the very impact that you are trying to promote.
Resources for What is an Interjection?
English Grammar in Use by Raymond Murphy
Plain English Handbook by J. Martyn Walsh and Anna Kathleen Walsh
The Only Grammar Book by Susan Thurman
Mastering English Grammar by S.H. Burton
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