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Comma before “indeed” ― Your One-stop Guide

Comma before “indeed” ― Your One-stop Guide

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Commas are often a source of headache for people, especially those who have not been readily exposed to writing strategies.

Albeit mostly seen as a writing issue, the punctuation system actually serves multivarious purposes that make writing more even more effective and attractive.

Welcome to Linguaholic, your go-to website when it comes to any comma-related concerns!


When do we need a comma before “indeed”?

A comma before “indeed” is essential when it is used as a parenthetical element; when it appears immediately after a parenthetical expression; as well as when it is used after a “yes” response. But, the comma must be dropped when it functions either as a noun or an intensifier in the sentence.


Determining when to place a comma before “indeed”

A comma must come before “indeed” when syntax and stylistics dictate, which also exemplifies how arbitrary any language is.

Since this is an inherent phenomenon, it is also apparent that comma-related rules are not necessarily set in stone.

That is, there are times when commas are strictly essential by default grammatical conventions.

Yet, there are other times when the comma placement is mainly based on the writer’s intended representation of meaning.

“Indeed” is an adverb that is primarily used in British English to emphasize the distinction of an idea, such as a description, classification, or condition.

It works similarly with how we use “very,” “extremely,” “exceedingly,” “really,” or “tremendously.”

These types of adverbs increase the emphasis of our sentences, and hence, they are beneficial in demonstrating persuasive language use.

Here are the circumstances in which a comma before “indeed” is always necessary:


When “indeed” is used as a parenthetical insertion

In rhetoric, a parenthetical idea or parenthesis refers to the deliberate addition of grammatically insignificant information to accessorize a statement.

As an auxiliary language element, a parenthetical expression may be inserted anywhere within a sentence.

A parenthesis is separated from the rest of the statement with a comma. Of course, two commas must encapsulate the parenthetical idea when it appears midway.

In other times though, writers may opt to use open and close parenthetical marks for more emphasis and readability.

Now that we know these things, we can also deduce that a comma should come before “indeed” when it is used as a parenthetical comment somewhere midsentence.

Here’s an example to show that:

She was disappointed, indeed infuriated, by his reaction.

You may also place the parenthetical insertion at the end of the sentence, which still entails a pre-comma placement.

His untimely passing broke everyone’s hearts, indeed proving that death is just waiting around the corner.

As you may have observed while reading the examples, the pre-comma prompts you to take a break and emphatically read the parenthesis in silence.

Without the commas, the statements will be read in a rather neutral manner, which also means that the writer’s intended emotional impact may not be achieved.


When “indeed” appears after a parenthetical insertion

Now that we’ve looked at how to punctuate parenthetical information, this next guideline should just be a piece of cake.

As parenthetical elements need commas to operate, a comma should also come before “indeed” when it is placed immediately after a parenthesis.

Not showing up at the airport, which Dahlia did on purpose, indeed broke his heart.

Inserting parenthetical elements is, again, a stylistic choice in which the aim is to make writing more convincing and creative.

So, these auxiliary linguistic devices have to be used with tact, and they have to be applied within appropriate contexts as well.


When “indeed” is used as an interjection after “yes”

Interjections are words that are used to textualize emotions. These words are also used to create emphasis in sentences.

As an adverb, the job of “indeed” is to intensify a certain idea, and hence, it is useful in demonstrating persuasive language use.

When we want to emphasize a response to show agreement or acceptance, we can simply pair “yes” and “indeed.”

A comma should come before “indeed” in representing this kind of idea in writing.

A: Let’s have a toast for our win.

B: Yes, indeed!

The comma that comes between “yes” and “indeed” prompts the reader to read the response with a positive, agreeing tone, hence the necessity in the example above.

“Yes” is also used most of the time as an introductory expression in sentences constructed in the vocative case.

In grammar studies, the vocative case is a construct that is used to represent that the text is directly intended towards the message receiver.

A comma is expected to come after it even if another word apart from “indeed” comes afterward if it is used in the vocative case, which is also more commonly known as “direct address.”


The ungrammatical use of a comma before “indeed”

In identifying the ungrammatical use of a comma before indeed, we only need to consider two conditions.

The first guideline is related to syntax, while the second is based on writing style or stylistics.

We need to omit the comma when “indeed” is nominalized or deliberately used as a noun, as well as when it functions as an intensifier for adjectives, verbs, and other adverbs.

Let’s look at each of these cases in detail.


When “indeed” is used as a noun

Nominalization is a linguistic process that transforms words into nouns. Most of the time, verbs and adjectives can be formed into nouns by letter or syllable affixation.

However, we can actually turn all words into nouns if we want to, especially when our purpose to provide a description of the expression, just like dictionaries do.

If “indeed” is strategically used as a noun in the sentence by making function as either a subject or an object, we need not punctuate it with a pre-comma.

But, note that this can be done so long that the conditions stated in the necessary comma usage in the previous section aren’t met.

For example, “indeed” may be used as a noun when it is part of a song or book title.

“Forever Indeed” is my favorite novel.

Since “indeed” is part of the complete subject of the sentence, no comma should come before it and not even after it.


When “indeed” is used as an intensifier

As an adverb per se, “indeed” can modify adjectives, verbs, and other adverbs in a sentence by intensifying their meaning.

When this happens, no comma should be placed before “indeed” when it is used to modify adjacent expressions.

Again, bear in mind that this rule applies if and when “indeed” isn’t used parenthetically or after a “yes” response.

Here are some examples of “indeed” intensifying words such as adjectives, verbs, and adverbs.

(adjective) That performance was indeed amazing!

(verb) His decision to leave indeed broke her into pieces.

(adverb) They were indeed here when it happened.


Frequently Asked Questions on “Comma Before Indeed”


How can we use “indeed” in a sentence?

We can use “indeed” either as an interjection (e.g. Yes, indeed!) or intensifier (e.g., That was indeed unexpected.)


Can we use “indeed” at the beginning of a sentence?

Yes, we can use “indeed” as an introductory expression to emphasize the meaning of the entire sentence. This particular usage of “indeed” is also known as a “disjunct” in grammar studies.


When do we put a comma after “yes”?

A comma is necessary after “yes” when it is used as a direct interjectory response to a statement or question in order to demonstrate agreement or acceptance. We can see this type of sentence construction in the construct called “direct address” or “vocative case.”


Should we put a comma after “yes” and a name?

Yes, a comma should come after “yes” when it is followed by a direct addressee’s name. This is done to alert readers that the text is directly referring to a specific message recipient, rather than merely reporting or declaring a piece of information. 



As of this point, I hope you’ve been able to see how commas transform our inner thoughts into textually intelligible messages.

Although they seem to be quite insignificant language tools at first glance, they actually have the power to alter or adjust meaning and implication.

Therefore, we must keep using them appropriately because if we don’t, then they may become only a part of our memory.