Disjunctive Conjunctions – Concept, uses and examples

We explain what disjunctive conjunctions are, their characteristics and examples. Also, other coordinating conjunctions.

disjunctive conjunctions
Disjunctive conjunctions can link two or more elements.

What are disjunctive conjunctions?

In grammar, it is called disjunctive conjunctions or disjunctive links to a certain type of coordinating conjunctions, that is, those that link two or more syntactic elements in a non-hierarchical and interchangeable way. But unlike other coordinating conjunctions, the disjunctives introduce a relationship of alternation or mutual exclusion between the linked terms, that is, they propose that we choose one or the other.

Disjunctive conjunctions can link more than two elements, however, although always with the same sense, and in those cases they are usually separated by commas or pauses of some kind, especially when it comes to option enumerations. On the other hand, the links of this type are “o” and “u”, although it is possible to use other forms such as “or” in specific cases.

It differs between “o” and “u” depending on the vowel sound of the word following the nexus, as occurs between “y” and “e” in copulative conjunctions. Thus, when the next word begins with the vowel sound [o], we will use “u” instead.

Examples of disjunctive conjunctions

Some examples of sentences with disjunctive conjunctions are the following:

  • I don’t know if to order the lasagna or rather the steak.
  • !OR you eat the food, or you will not play video games!
  • You want to win or Do you want to lose?
  • We can camp on this site, O well keep going until you find a better one.
  • I don’t know if I’m more proud or proud.
  • Do you want to fry or bake the fish?
  • I don’t remember if it was Thursday or Friday, or Saturday.
  • Here you will not fish but a catfish, a hedgehog or a cold!

Other coordinating conjunctions

In addition to disjunctive conjunctions, there are the following types of coordinating conjunctions:

  • Copulative conjunctions, which link two or more terms from an addition or accumulation relationship. For example: “I invited your brothers and your cousins ​​”or” The team did not win neither a trophy, neither a medal”.
  • Adverse conjunctions, which introduce a relationship of total or partial opposition or conflict between the linked elements. For example: “We are hungry, but there’s no food”.
  • Distributive conjunctions, which distribute a specific meaning between the linked terms. For example: “We will get home, be today, be morning”.
  • Explanatory conjunctions, that link elements that have the same meaning but different form, to insist on what was said or explain it better. For example: “Patricia graduated, I mean, is now an engineer ”.