Parenthesis: giraffe-necked weevil
The Grammar Bit!
The three sentences opposite each contain a parenthesis. A parenthesis (bold) is an additional piece of information added to a sentence. Brackets, dashes and commas can all be used to indicate parenthesis.
Try to think of parenthesis as if the writer is whispering in your ear, “Here is a little bit of extra information. It’s not vital that you know it, but it is interesting.”
With your talk partner, read each sentence with the parenthesis. Now read each sentence without the parenthesis. What do you notice?
1) The blood-red weevil, which was desperate to mate, knocked its rival off the leaf with his extra-long neck.
2) All around the Madagascan rainforest (now much smaller in size due to deforestation), the females were rolling and curling leaves.
3) As the nest – containing a single egg – fell to the forest floor, the giraffe-necked weevil took to the air.
“Do you know what my favourite rock song is called?
Weevil Rock You!”