3 Types of Compound Words

Last week, we went over the difference between contractions and compound words.

Today, we're gonna talk more in-depth about compound words by breaking down the three types:

1. Closed Compounds

There's the classic way of writing compound words--at least I think it's classic--and that's by meshing two words together with no space in between. These compound words are called closed compounds. For example:


2. Hyphenated Compounds

Then there are the two words that are joined together by a hyphen, otherwise known as hyphenated compounds. These words typically have two or more words joined together. Tor example:


3. Open Compounds

Lastly, we have the words that belong together, but there's a space in between them. These are called open compounds, and they have three sub-rules for usage.

(a) open compound words are referred to as verbs. For example:

Follow up
Back up
Carry over

(b) open compound words modify the adjective generally used with its noun to create a new noun. For example:

Real estate
Coffee mug
Full moon

(c) open compound words are the only ones where the second word can be capitalized. For example:

African American
Asian American
South America


Compound words, in general, can be tricky. If you're ever in doubt, follow one of my favorite tips and Google it! There are tons of grammar resources online. That being said, I want to credit one of my favorite grammar resources, "grammarly" for a good portion of today's blog content.

Always strive to #LookBetterInWriting.