In this first instance the main clause only stands alone if you omit (then).

But in the other example it clearly has a main clause. So would this be classed as an embedded main clause as it only works as a independent clause if it's adjusted and or if it's joined with a dependent clause.

If I have enough money, then I will buy a new car.

If it rains, the picnic will be cancelled.

The picnic will be cancelled if it rains.

1 Answer 1


The use of then is optional, and it does not affect the syntax of the sentence. The main clause is still (then) I will buy a new car.

To put this another way, here are several variations of the main clause:

Then, I will buy a new car.
I will then buy a new car.
I will buy a new car then.

The first example is the most literal use of the text you provided, simply with some punctuation that makes it stand completely on its own.

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