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Thread: Nevertheless vs. But

  1. #1 Nevertheless vs. But 
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    We can't afford to buy a new car. NEVERTHELESS/BUT, my wife wants to continue to loke for one.
    Sales of new cars have been down the past six month, NEVERTHELESS/BUT this is expected to change soon.
    Would you please kindly tell me which one MUST be chosen? or which one do you use?


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  3. #2  
    Life-Size Nanoputian Flick Montana's Avatar
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    I don't like starting a sentence with 'but'. I use something like 'however' when I'm starting a new sentence, but I used 'but' to break one with a comma.


    "Sometimes I think the surest sign that intelligent life exists elsewhere in the universe is that none of it has tried to contact us." -Calvin
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  4. #3  
    not ADM!N grmpysmrf's Avatar
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    Either of those two fit in the sentences the way they are.
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  5. #4  
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    Thank you all so much. Nonetheless, would anybody give me a certain or accurate source to prove your explanations?
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  6. #5  
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    Quote Originally Posted by nima_persian View Post
    We can't afford to buy a new car. NEVERTHELESS/BUT, my wife wants to continue to loke for one.
    In formal English, you should use "Nevertheless" here. "But" is a conjunction and should not be used to begin a sentence. "Nevertheless" is an adverb, and can be used to start the sentence. Nevertheless, "but" is often used in informal English to start sentences.
    Sales of new cars have been down the past six month, NEVERTHELESS/BUT this is expected to change soon.
    You should use "but" in this sentence, because the word is being used as a conjunction to join two clauses.
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    Forum Masters Degree DianeG's Avatar
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    As Harold said, "but" is a conjunction and technically should not be used to start a sentence. However, I see it in newspapers all the time, probably because it is short and saves space and its meaning is similar to however, never the less, and on the other hand. You do find it in literature as well. Strangely, it often appears in grammar books, even the ones saying you aren't supposed to do it.

    Examples of Sentences Starting with But:
    Eats, Shoots and Leaves, Lynn Truss, p. 7:
    “But best of all, I think, is the simple advice given by the style book of a national newspaper: that punctuation is ‘a courtesy designed to help readers to understand a story without stumbling.’”

    The Associated Press Stylebook (2007), p. 326:
    “But use the comma if its omission would slow comprehension…”


    The Elements of Style, Strunk and White (1918 edition):
    “But whether the interruption be slight or considerable, he must never omit one comma and leave the other.”

    Watch Your Language, Theodore Bernstein, p. 4:
    “But when he is writing for the newspaper he must fit himself into the newspaper’s framework.”


    Preface to Watch Your Language, Jacques Barzun:
    “But I am not inviting the reader to witness a tender of compliments over what may seem like a mere byproduct of professional skill.”


    The American Language: An Inquiry into the Development of English in the United States, H.L.Mencken (1921):
    “But its chief excuse is its human interest, for it prods deeply into national idiosyncrasies and ways of mind, and that sort of prodding is always entertaining.”



    The King’s English, H.D. Fowler (1908 edition):
    “But if, instead of his Saxon percentage’s being the natural and undesigned consequence of his brevity (and the rest), those other qualities have been attained by his consciously restricting himself to Saxon, his pains will have been worse than wasted; the taint of preciosity will be over all he has written.”

    Little Women, Louisa May Alcott, page 1:
    “We can’t do much, but we can make our little sacrifices, and ought to do it gladly. But I’m afraid I don’t.” And Meg shook her head, as she thought regretfully of all the pretty things she wanted.

    Epistle Dedicatory to Man and Superman, Bernard Shaw, 1903, p. 2:
    “But you must not expect me to adopt your inexplicable, fantastic, petulant, fastidious ways….”



    Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone, J. K. Rowling, p. 3:

    “But on the edge of town, drills were driven out of his mind by something else.”

    FDR, First Inaugural Address, March 4, 1933:
    “But it may be that an unprecedented demand and need for undelayed action may call for temporary departure from that normal balance of public procedure.”


    The Gettysburg Address, Abraham Lincoln (1863):

    “But in a larger sense, we cannot dedicate, we cannot consecrate, we cannot hallow this ground.”


    Hamlet, William Shakespeare, Ii:
    Horatio: So have I heard and do in part believe it.
    But look, the morn, in russet mantle clad,
    Walks o’er the dew of yon high eastward hill.


    King James Bible, Luke 6:44 – 45 (Sermon on the Mount)
    “But I say unto you, Love your enemies, bless them that curse you, do good to them that hate you, and pray for them which despitefully use you, and persecute you; that ye may be the children of your Father which is in heaven: for he maketh his sun to rise on the evil and on the good, and sendeth rain on the just and on the unjust.”

    Cashel Byron’s Profession, Bernard Shaw:
    CASHEL. I go. The meanest lad on thy estate Would not betray me thus. But ’tis no matter.
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  8. #7  
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    What about "albiet"? or the more archaic "howbeit"?

    I always liked that one better.
    Some clocks are only right twice a day, but they are still right when they are right.
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    Quote Originally Posted by kojax View Post
    What about "albiet"? or the more archaic "howbeit"?

    I always liked that one better.
    I think those aren't really words but more slang type speech.
    I've never seen anything about them in any of the text books I've used.
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  10. #9  
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    Quote Originally Posted by grmpysmrf View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by kojax View Post
    What about "albiet"? or the more archaic "howbeit"?

    I always liked that one better.
    I think those aren't really words but more slang type speech.
    I've never seen anything about them in any of the text books I've used.

    I looked up those words and saw that they are both conjunctions and synonymous with the terms "although" and "nevertheless".
    Nevertheless, the words "albeit" and "howbeit" sound very formal when compared with their respective synonyms.
    "The only safe rule is to dispute only with those of your acquaintance of whom you know that they possess sufficient intelligence and self-respect not to advance absurdities; to appeal to reason and not to authority, and to listen to reason and yield to it; and, finally, to be willing to accept reason even from an opponent, and to be just enough to bear being proved to be in the wrong."

    ~ Arthur Schopenhauer, The Art of Being Right: 38 Ways to Win an Argument (1831), Stratagem XXXVIII.
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  11. #10  
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    Quote Originally Posted by nima_persian View Post
    Thank you all so much. Nonetheless, would anybody give me a certain or accurate source to prove your explanations?
    It is difficult to give an accurate proof of any grammar rule. To do so implies language is 100 percent prescriptivist, meaning that language is decided by a group. Authorities can help evolve language, but language ultimately evolves through use. When someone says, "Don't say ain't. It isn't a word," they should say ain't isn't a word in what they consider formal or polite English. Any word used and understood among a population is a word.

    For this reason, you can't find objective grammar rules. They evolve. However, there are more appropriate versions of a language to use in different settings.

    My purpose in saying this is to point out that you standard of proof in what is the right way to say something, grammatically, is likely too high.
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