There are a number of formulas used when contrasting ideas in English. Here are some of the most common:
- We'd love to stay for dinner, but we have got to get going.
- They decided to stay in the area, in spite of their problems with the local residents.
- Despite the difficulties of a long journey, Peter decided to visit India.
- Getting a good job is hard work, however, most people eventually find one with patience.
- There were a number of people who came, although the hotels were not equipped to handle them all.
After you study these constructions, take the contrasting ideas quiz to check your understanding.
More English Functions
Asking for Information
Being Imprecise or Vague
Saying 'No' Nicely
|main statement, but contrasting statement||I'd really like to come to the film, but I have to study tonight.||Use a comma or semi colon (;) with 'but'. 'But' is the most common way to show contrasting ideas.|
|main statement, in spite of contrasting statement OR in spite of contrasting statement, main statement||They continued on their journey, in spite of the pouring rain.||Use 'in spite of' plus a noun, noun phrase or gerund|
|main statement, despite contrasting statement OR Despite contrasting statement, main statement||They continued on their journey, despite the pouring rain.||Use 'despite' plus a noun, noun phrase or gerund|
|main statement, although contrasting statement OR Although contrasting statement, main statement||We wanted to buy a sports car, although we knew that fast cars can be dangerous.||Use 'although' with a subject and a verb.|