Many words connect sentences, clauses, and phrases. But only contrast linking words can express two different ideas. The previous sentence uses the linking word of contrast but two connect it with the first sentence.
Learn the different linking words of contrast in the article and how to use them in sentences. I’ll show you how to position them in sentences and whether to use a comma.
What Are Contrast Words?
Linking words for contrast or contrast words are words that show contrasting ideas. These English linking words connect two statements that are different from each other. For instance, one may be a positive idea, while another is a negative idea.
Here’s a list of contrast words in English.
- Even though
- In spite of
- On the other hand
How to Use Contrast Words in a Sentence
Let’s look at the different contrast words and how to use them in sentences.
However is a sentence starter that shows a contrast between two separate sentences. Place the contrast word at the start of the second sentence, the end, and after the subject. Below are some examples of sentences.
- I love this city. However, the roads are too narrow.
- I love this city. The roads, however, are too narrow.
- I love this city. The roads are narrow, however.
But is more informal than however. Don’t put a comma after it; instead, put a comma before it when it’s used to connect two independent clauses. For example:
- I love this city. But the words are too narrow.
- I love this city, but the roads are too narrow.
While however doesn’t connect two clauses, we use although and even though at the beginning of a complete sentence with subject and verb. You can also use them in the middle of a sentence. Here are some examples.
- Although the book was long, I enjoyed reading it the entire weekend.
- I enjoyed reading the book the entire weekend, although it was long.
Though is a looking word found between two phrases. It means despite this or but in the English language. For example:
- I feel down today. I’m still attending the event, though.
- She will be my professor this semester, though I don’t know which subject.
Use the linker yet when expressing an idea that is surprising because it contradicts what has been mentioned earlier. For example:
- I helped her, yet she betrayed me.
- He’s already 94 years old, yet somehow, he is still fit and healthy.
Despite/In Spite Of
These linking words of contrast are used to contrast ideas. We can also place a noun phrase or an -ing form of the verb after them. For example:
- Despite her suggestions, Mike still played by his own rules.
- In spite of being the top artist in the country, she still feels lonely.
Despite the Fact That/In Spite of the Fact That
Statements like despite the fact that and in spite of the fact that are similar to despite and in spite. But these phrases have a subject and verb after them. For example:
- I enjoyed the party despite the fact that we arrived late.
- He was grateful in spite of the fact that he lost the competition.
While, whereas, and unlike show two things that differ. Use whereas and while with two complete clauses and unlike with a noun. Consider these sentences.
- Joan is happy, while John is excited.
- Whereas Kat looks excited in this photo, Sheila seems upset.
- Unlike Michael, Miguel excels in performing arts.
On the Other Hand
The contrast linking word on the other hand compares two different ways, facts, or ideas of the same situation. Here are some examples.
- On one hand, I want to be an engineer. But on the other hand, I also like my current education degree.
- I enjoy jazz music, but on the other hand, my friend loves rock music.
Practice Using Contrast Linking Words
Contrast linking words join contradicting ideas, whether they’re clauses, sentences, or phrases. These words may have similar uses but different meanings and placements in sentences.
Some contrast words like although and however can be at the beginning of a sentence. Meanwhile, on the other hand, although, and other words can be in the middle of a sentence.