comma or semicolon before 'but' [conjunction]: same in return; but


British English
Would you agree that the below sentence is correct, or what changes would you make, if any. I'm finding it a bit confusing with all the rules around punctuation.

'I love you,' I said, expecting to hear the same in return; but, there was no return.
  • owlman5

    Senior Member
    Hello, Ryansamturner. I generally reserve the semicolon as a replacement for a comma and a coordinating conjunction. I can't see any useful function for it in your sentence. Given that your last remark is something of a dramatic negation of your expectation, I'd punctuate your sentences this way: "I love you," I said, expecting to hear the same in return. But there was no return.


    Senior Member
    UK English
    I don't think I have ever seen a semicolon before but. It is preceded by a comma or nothing. With a semicolon I would expect however followed by a comma.