Have you ever had the challenge of using another word for but in your conversations? Are you familiar with the synonyms for but in English?
Pay attention to this dialogue:
- Let’s have pizza for lunch!
- But I can’t! I have high cholesterol!
- Then, how about salad?
- But I don’t like salad!
- But I hate the smell of fish!
- So?! Nothing
- Oh, but I’m hungry!
- You said “but” like 100 times! Do you know any other words?
In this lesson we are going to learn the most common synonyms of but. Stay with us!
What are conjunctions?
In the English language, any word that connects two different clauses or sentences is called a conjunction. There are 3 main types of conjunctions:
1. Coordinating conjunctions
A coordinating conjunction connects two sentences that are both independent clauses. There are 7 coordinating conjunctions:
(to remember them: FAN BOYS)
2. Subordinating conjunctions
A subordinating conjunction connects two sentences. One of which is an independent clause and the other is dependent.
A correlative conjunction is a pair of conjunctions. For example:
- Either….. or…..
- Neither…… nor……
- Not only…… but also…..
So, as you have noticed, “but” is a coordinating conjunction that connects 2 independent clauses together. But what is an independent clause? Look at this example:
- I want to eat pizza but my cholesterol is high!
The clause before “but” (I want to eat pizza) has meaning, subject, and verb and it’s complete on its own. This is an independent clause.
So, any complete sentence which can be understood alone and on its own is an independent clause.
7 sets of alternatives for but
1.On the other hand: another word for but
This word is one of the most common synonyms for but. Look at this sentence:
- We should invest in advertisements. But, our budget is limited!
This sentence can be rewritten like this:
- We should invest in advertisements. On the other hand, our budget is limited!
Or like this:
- On the one hand, we should invest in advertisements. But, our budget is limited!
2. However: of but alternatives
This word is also in the list of but synonyms that is a fancy and formal way to say “but”.
- I really like you, but I don’t want to start a new relationship!
You can use synonyms for but in this sentence and rewrite it like this:
- I really like you. However, I don’t want to start a new relationship!
Pay attention that we usually have a comma after “however” and it is usually used at the beginning of the sentence.
3. Yet: synonyms for but
There is another “yet” which is used as an adverb in present perfect (I haven’t finished my homework yet.) and is different from this one. This is an in the list of alternatives for but.
- I don’t like this job but I have sent an application.
- We can say this sentence like this:
- I don’t like this yet but I have sent an application.
- They played really well yet they were defeated!
4. Nonetheless / nevertheless: another word for but
Pay attention that both of these words are in the list of but synonyms that consist of one section. Nonetheless and nevertheless can be used interchangeably (instead of each other) and they have the same meaning. For example:
- I know there are many risks. Nonetheless / Nevertheless, I want to make an investment!
- There are several problems in our company. Nonetheless / Nevertheless, we are doing our best!
5. Even though / Although: alternatives of but
Both of these words are also known as the alternatives for but that can be used interchangeably. Let’s have a look at some examples:
- She will come tonight although / eventhough I’m not sure exactly when.
- He decided to go although / eventhough I asked him to stay!
- Although I’m tired, but let’s go out and have fun tonight!
This sentence is wrong and the correct form is like this:
- Although I’m tired, let’s go out and have fun tonight!
- I’m tired, but let’s go out and have some fun!
6. Though: Of but synonyms
This word is also of synonyms for but that has the same meaning as the previous ones, but this one is informal. As an example:
- They’re coming next week, though I’m not sure on which day!
We can also use “though” at the end of a sentence.
- It’s an old movie, I like it though!
7. In spite of / Despite: another word for but
Pay attention because this can bit really tricky and students often make mistakes when they want to use these alternatives for but.
After “in spite of” or “despite” we either use a noun or gerund. If we want to use a full clause (as in the third sentence), we must say “in spite of the fact that + clause.
In spite of his injury, Ronaldo will play.
In spite of being injured, Ronaldo will play.
- Full clause
In spite of the fact that he is injured, Ronaldo will play.
You can use “despite” instead of “in spite of” with no change of rules.
- Despite his injury, Ronaldo will play.
- Despite being injured, Ronaldo will play.
- Despite the fact that he is injured, Ronaldo will play.
Summary of the lesson: but synonyms
Let’s review the but alternatives that we have learned in this lesson
✅On the other hand
✅Nonetheless / Nevertheless
✅Even though / Although
✅In spite of / Despite
As you know, every word in English has its own synonyms and antonyms. It’s important to learn about these alternatives and know how to use them in our conversations. The POC English online English course covers a lot of synonyms for the most common words in English. Take this course, learn new vocabulary, improve your grammar, and take your speaking skills to the next level.
We also have a great course for IELTS students! If you are going to get a great score in the IELTS exam, our online IELTS course is perfect for you!