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16. But, although, in spite of, whereas, etc.


1 But, although and however

We can join two sentences with but.
The cafe was crowded, but we found a table.
Nick has a car,
but he doesn't often drive it.
But expresses a contrast or conflict between two ideas. We can also use although.
Although the cafe was crowded, we found a table.
Although Nick has a car, he doesn't often drive it.

The clause with although can come at the end.
We found a table, although the cafe was crowded.
However is a little formal.
The new system was supposed to be more efficient. However, in practice it caused chaos. /In practice, however, it caused chaos.

2 Though and even though

Though is informal. It means the same as although.
Though/Although I liked the sweater, I decided not to buy it.
We can also use though at the end of a sentence.
I liked the sweater. I decided not to buy it, though.
Even though is stronger, more emphatic than although.
Matthew looked quite fresh, even though he'd been playing squash.
Even though you dislike Jessica, you should try to be nice to her.

3 In spite of and despite

We use in spite of before a noun or before the ing-form of a verb.
Kitty wanted to report on the war in spite of the danger.
Mark went on working in spite of feeling unwell.
We use despite in exactly the same way as in spite of and with the same meaning.
She wanted to go despite the danger.
He went on working
despite feeling unwell.

4 In spite of and although

We can use in spite of the fact (that) in the same way as although.
I'm no better in spite of the fact that I've taken the pills.

5 Whereas, while and on the other hand

We use these words to express a comparison between two ideas.
United are top of the league, whereas City are bottom.
Yesterday it was freezing cold, while today it's quite warm.
The flat is conveniently located. On the other hand, there's a lot of noise from the traffic. /There is, on the other hand, a lot of noise from the traffic.

Sometimes either but or whereas is possible.
The red pills make me feel sick, but/whereas the blue ones don't.

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