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Syntax Training | Lynn Gaertner-Johnston

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November 28, 2005


A. Douglas

Can you start a sentence with the word "however"?


Yes, it is fine to start a sentence with "however." (See above.) It's more formal than "but."

clinton e mercer

Is It acceptable to start a sentence with "but?"


Clinton, please see the discussion above.

Elad Nava

Great article, used it when writing an essay.



thanks this really helped...i appreciate it


hey, i'm in the re-reading my essay, there's a few "but"s at the start of a few sentances. but also a fair few "however"s and "nevertheless"s. do you think not using "but" overides not varying your vocab?


Dan, I don't understand your question yet. I'm having difficulty with "not using" overriding "not varying." Can you state it another way?


But Head

Thanks, you article was useful.
But I also found the quoted URL very helpful.


Thank you for the link. Trying to read that post, I was reminded why I am a business writer--not an academic. I could not get through more than a few sentences without longing for the Cliff's Notes version.


Nice article, one question though;
Is it possible to begin a sentence with "With"


You can start a sentence with any word you choose.


It's bad style to start a sentence with "however". You're better off just using "but". But if you really want to use "however", say "we look forward, however, to writing an agreement today".


can you start a sentence with "which", or does that make the sentence a fragment?

ex: "which leads us back to the central issue..."


Dixie, starting a sentence with "which" usually makes it a fragment if you use it the way you did. However, many questions begin with "which," as in "Which one do you prefer?"


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