Clauses of contrast, purpose, reason and result
Choose the correct option to complete the following clauses of contrast, purpose, reason and result.
Clauses of contrast
Although, even though
We can use although/even though at the beginning or in the middle of a sentence followed by a clause (subject + verb). We NEVER use a comma after although or event though.
- Although/Even though we had a bad game, we won.
- We won, although/even though we had a bad game.
We use however to connect two different sentences. We normally use however at the beginning of the second sentence after a full stop (.) or a semi-colon (;). However is ALWAYS followed by a comma.
- We didn’t like the hotel. However, we had a fantastic time.
- We went to the beach; however, the weather wasn’t perfect.
We can also use however at the end of the sentence.
- We didn’t like the hotel. We had a fantastic time, however.
Despite/in spite of
Despite and in spite of are normally followed by a noun or a –ing verb. They can go at the beginning or in the middle of the sentence.
- Despite/In spite of the rain, we went to the concert.
- They arrived despite/in spite of leaving very early.
We can use a clause (subject + verb) after despite/in spite of + the fact that.
- We went out despite/in spite of the fact that it was raining.
Clauses of purpose
To + infinitive
The most common way to express purpose in English is to + infinitive.
- The student worked hard to pass the test.
In order to/so as to + infinitive
In order to or so as to + infinitive are more common in formal English, mainly in writing. The negative forms are in order not to and so as not to + infinitive.
- We were asked to stay in order to finish the project.
- He left home early in order not to be late.
- Use a plastic hammer so as to avoid damage.
- They walked quietly so as not to wake up the children.
We can also use the structure in order for someone/something to do something.
- We need to mobilize the media in order for the Government to listen to us.
- Three different surgeries were necessary in order for him to survive.
So that + clause
We can also use so that + subject + verb to express purpose. We normally use a modal verb with this connector, e.g. could, can, would, etc.
- We left early so that we could park near the centre.
- He made some flashcards so that it would be easier for his mum to remember the instructions.
For + noun
We can also use for + noun to express purpose.
- We went to the bar for a drink.
- Would you like to go to the park for a run?
We can use for + –ing verb (instead of to + infinitive) to talk about the purpose of an object or action when we use the verb used or when we imply it.
- This knife is (used) for cutting plastic.
- Schools are for educating, not for entertaining.
In case + clause
To express purpose, we can also use in case + subject + verb. We use this form to talk about precautions, when we do something because something not wanted might happen.
- Take the umbrella in case it rains. (=take the umbrella so that you won’t get wet if it rains)
- I won’t tell Ann in case she tells everyone else.
Clauses of reason
When we want to explain the reason why something happened or why someone did something, we use a clause of reason introduced by a conjunction (as, since, because) or a noun phrase introduced by because of, due to, owing to, or on account of.
We use because before a clause (subject + verb). It can be used at the beginning or at the end of a sentence (at the end is more common). A comma is used when the clause of reason is at the beginning of the sentence.
- We didn’t go because it was raining heavily.
- Because the event was cancelled, they lost their deposits.
We use as and since in a very similar way to because. They are followed by subject + verb and can be used at the beginning or at the end of a sentence. However, as and since are more formal expressions, and more common in written than in spoken English.
- The government urged people to stay indoors since/as more rain is forecast for the entire weekend.
- As/Since the roads were blocked, the victims had to be rescued by helicopter.
We use because of before a noun.
- The concert was postponed because of the heavy rain.
Due to/owing to/on account of
We can also use due to/owing to/on account of before a noun. They mean ‘because of’ but are more formal.
- The event was cancelled due to/owing to/on account of lack of interest.
- I couldn’t enjoy the meal due to/owing to/on account of their constant arguing.
Clauses of result
We use clauses of result to talk about the result of an action or situation.
We can use so + subject + verb at the end of a sentence to mean ‘this is why’.
- We didn’t have anything to do, so we decided to rent a film.
- I worked very hard today, so I’m exhausted.
For this reason
We normally use for this reason at the beginning of a sentence. We use a comma after it.
- Rent is very expensive in Boston. For this reason, we decided to move to Ohio.
- He threatened to commit suicide. For this reason, we kept him under surveillance.
As a result/consequently/therefore
As a result, consequently and therefore are more formal and more common in written language. They are normally used at the beginning of a sentence, followed by a comma.
- The flight was delayed due to the storm. As a result, many passengers complained.
- Animals were his only true passion. Therefore/Consequently, he decided to study biology.
We can also use consequently and therefore in mid position (before the verb, after be as the main verb, or after the first auxiliary verb).
- You have been a real asset to the company. We have therefore/consequently decided to promote you.
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