Linkers for contrasts

But v However

But is more informal than however. You can use however at the beginning of a sentence. You can't use but at the beginning of a sentence in written English.
  • I can understand Italian but I can't speak it very well.
  • I can understand Italian. However, I can't speak it very well.

Despite v In spite of

These linking words are the same. They are followed by a noun or a gerund.
  • We had a great time despite the rain.
  • In spite of leaving school at 16 without any qualifications, he went on to have a successful career.

Despite the fact that v In spite of the fact that

These phrases are followed by a subject + verb.
  • We had a great time despite the fact that it rained all weekend.
  • He has a successful career, in spite of the fact that he has no qualifications.

Although v Even though

These linking words are the same. They are both followed by a subject + verb.
  • She's rather shy, although she's not as bad as she used to be.
  • Even though I was invited to the party, I didn't go.

Though

This linking word, when found in the middle of two phrases, has a meaning similar to but. It has a meaning similar to despite this when placed at the end (in spoken English).
  • They are coming next week, though I don't know which day.
  • I felt sick. I went to work though.


While v Whereas v Unlike

These linking words are used to show how two things are different from each other. While and whereas are used between two complete phrases. Unlike is used with only a subject.
  • Dave is talkative while his girlfriend is very quiet.
  • In that picture he is smiling whereas in this one he look quite serious.
  • Unlike me, my brother excels in sport.

On the other hand

This linker is used to compare two different facts or two opposite ways of thinking about the same situation.
  • On (the) one hand I'd like a job that pays more, but on the other hand I am quite happy with the job I have now.
  • I like classical music, but on the other hand, my boyfriend loves jazz.

Nevertheless v Nonetheless

These linkers mean the same, though nevertheless is slightly formal. They are used to contradict what has just been said.
  • She didn't love him, but she nevertheless agreed to marry him.
  • I already knew a lot of what was said, but the class was fun nonetheless.

Yet

This linker is used to say something surprising that contradics what has just been said.
  • He's overweight and bald, yet somehow, he is attractive.
  • He studied a lot, yet he didn't pass the exam.



Complete the following sentences in a suitable way:


The Spanish, unlike the Italians, …
I haven’t had much time to study, nevertheless …
I like living in Spain, in spite of the fact that …
The film won many awards despite …
He’s going to work abroad although …
On one hand my boss can be very understanding, but on the other hand …
You can’t afford to go away for the weekend, yet …
I go to the gym three times a week but …
In Madrid they … whereas in Barcelona they …
He went to the pub with his friends even though …
People in their 40s … while people in their 20s …
The government promised to … However, …
…, but I went nonetheless.
..., in spite of the noise.
 We're going to try our best though ...

Comments

Anonymous said…
Hi, Graham, first of all I try with these exercise. José Luis

The Spanish, unlike the Italians, AREN’T SO OSTENTATIOUS WITH CLOTHING
I haven’t had much time to study, nevertheless …I THINK I’M GOING TO PASS THE EXAM
I like living in Spain, in spite of the fact that THE NOISE IN THE CITIES CAN BE INSUFFERABLE…
The film won many awards despite …OF SUFFERING NO GOOD REVIEWS
He’s going to work abroad although …HE DOESN’T LIKE LIVING AWAY
On one hand my boss can be very understanding, but on the other hand HE’S TOO SUSCEPTIBLE
You can’t afford to go away for the weekend, yet YOU STILL MAKING PLANS
I go to the gym three times a week but NEXT WEEK I WON’T BE ABLE BECAUSE I GO AWAY
In Madrid they LIVED IN A NICE HOUSE whereas in Barcelona they HAVEN’T HAD LUCKY AND THE HOUSE WHERE THEY LIVE IS AWFUL…
He went to the pub with his friends even though HE WAS A LITTLE SICK
People in their 40s START SAVING MONEY while people in their 20s ONLY WANT TO LIVE WITHOUT WORRIES
The government promised to IMPROVE THE ECONOMY However, THE RESULTS, TWO YEARS LATER, ARE DISSAPOINTING…
I HAD SLEEPED A FEW HOURS…, but I went nonetheless.
I LOVE MADRID in spite of the NOISE.
We're going to try our best though WE KNOW IT’S VERY DIFFICULT
Graham said…
Hi JL prof!

I like your examples.

The Spanish, unlike the Italians, AREN’T SO/as OSTENTATIOUS ABOUT THEIR CLOTHING.

I like living in Spain, in spite of the fact that THE NOISE IN THE CITIES CAN BE UNBEARABLE.

The film won many awards despite SUFFERING BAD REVIEWS

You can’t afford to go away for the weekend, yet YOU ARE STILL MAKING PLANS

I go to the gym three times a week but NEXT WEEK I WON’T BE ABLE TO BECAUSE I AM GOING AWAY

In Madrid they LIVED IN A NICE HOUSE whereas in Barcelona they WEREN'T LUCKY AND THE HOUSE WHERE THEY WERE LIVING WAS AWFUL.

The government promised to IMPROVE THE ECONOMY However, THE RESULTS, TWO YEARS LATER, ARE DI<SAPPOINTING…

I HAD ONLY SLEPT A FEW HOURS…, but I went nonetheless.



See you later.

Anonymous said…
Hi again!
I've read this post. I've found it very useful.
Anonymous said…
Hi Graham! I'm Inés

1. The Spanish, unlike the Italians, TALK SPANISH EVERYDAY.

2. I haven't had much time to study, nevertheless I'LL TRY TO PASS THE EXAM.

3. I like living in Spain, in spite of the fact that THE ECONOMY IS REALLY BAD.

4. The film won many awards despite IT WAS FROM ANOTHER COUNTRY.

5. He's going to work abroad despite HE DOESN'T KNOW MUCH LANGUAGES.

6. On one hand my boss can be very understanding, but on the other hand HE'S SOMETIMES VERY BOSSY.

7. You can't afford to go away for the weekend, yet YOU CAN GO OUT FOR HAVING LUNCH.

8. I go to the gym three times a week but I THINK I WON'T GO ANYMORE BECAUSE I HAVE NO TIME FOR STUDYING.

9. In Madrid they DON'T HAVE FRIENDS, whereas in Barcelona they HAVE A LOT.

10. He went to the pub with his friends even though HE COULDN'T DRINK ALCOHOL.

11. People in their 40s THINK ABOUT THEIR FUTURE while people in their 20s ONLY THINK ABOUT PARTIES AND FUN.

12. The government promised to INCREASE THE PENSIONS. However, they AREN'T CARRYING OUT THEIR PROMISES.

13. I DIDN'T WANT TO, but I went nonetheless.

14. HE LOVES GOING TO NEW YORK, in spite of the noise.

15. We're going to try our best though IT'S VERY DIFFICULT.
Graham said…
Hi Inés,

I'm Inés WRONG
It's Inés RIGHT

4. The film won many awards despite being a film in a foreign language.

5. He's going to work abroad despite not knowing many languages.

7. You can't afford to go away for the weekend yet you can go out to have lunch.

let me finish this later. Got class now.
Graham said…
That's me finished classes for today.

8. I go to the gym three times a week but I don't think I'll go anymore because I have no time to study.

12. The government promised to increase pensions.


Well done.

Linking words are useful for FCE Speaking, Writing and Use of English.

Have a look at the label Linking Words.

Anonymous said…
Hi Graham! It's Alicia:

1. The Spanish, unlike the Italians, don't care so much of their style.

2. I haven't had much time to study, nevertheless I'll try to do my best.

3. I like living in Spain, in spite of the fact that like other cities.

4. The film won many awards despite not famous actors have worked on it.

5. He's going to work abroad despite all his family live here.

6. On one hand my boss can be very understanding, but on the other hand he's sometimes angry.

7. You can't afford to go away for the weekend, yet you can go to your friend's house.

8. I go to the gym three times a week but now I have exams, so I think I will not go for a month..

9. In Madrid they don't have family, whereas in Barcelona they have their parents.

10. He went to the pub with his friends even though he were on exams.

11 The government promised to repair the road. However, they aren't repairing it.

12 I wasn't so excited to go, but I went nonetheless.

13 He likes living in the city, in spite of the noise.

14 We're going to try our best though I'm not sure I could do it.

See you tomorrow
Graham said…
Hi Alicia,

It's taken me a few days but here are the corrections:

1. The Spanish, unlike the Italians, don't care so much about their style.

3. I like living in Spain, in spite of the fact that I like other countries.

4. The film won many awards despite not having famous actors in it.

5. He's going to work abroad despite the fact that all his family live here.

10. He went to the pub with his friends even though he had exams.

12 I wasn't so excited about going, but I went nonetheless.

14 We're going to try our best though I'm not sure I can / will be able to do it.



Well done!
luciti said…
Hi!

That is my exercise.

The Spanish, unlike the Italians, are truthful
I haven’t had much time to study, nevertheless I’ll do my exam.
I like living in Spain, in spite of the fact that Spain is in crisis
The film won many awards despite the bad plot and actors
He’s going to work abroad although I would like to work in Spain.
On one hand my boss can be very understanding, but on the other hand he is a very demanding boss
You can’t afford to go away for the weekend, yet you have to do your homework.
I go to the gym three times a week but last week I just went twice.
In Madrid they went out all time whereas in Barcelona they didn’t it because they were very tired.
He went to the pub with his friends even though he felt sick.
People in their 40s are more reserved while people in their 20s have more freedom.
The goverment promised to go down the taxes However, the taxes have raised
They said to me that it was dangerous go at the concert, but I went nonetheless.
I always sleep with opened windows , in spite of the noise.
We're going to try our best though it’s difficult to me.


Other samples:

I would like to travel more but It’s difficult to me to find time to it.
However I can understand easily a test, I’ve many problems to write.
We are going to the county despite bad weather.
In spite of going out late of work, they always go running.
They played a great match in spite of the fact that they had hurt players.
He’s such a great actor despite of the fact that he never has learned dramatic art in an academy.


Bye!!
Graham said…
Lucía,

You can’t afford to go away for the weekend, yet you have to do your homework. This doesn't make sense. "can't afford" means that you don't have enough money.

In Madrid they went out all time whereas in Barcelona they didn’t because they were very tired.

The goverment promised to lower taxes However, taxes have risen.

They said to me that it was dangerous to go to the concert, but I went nonetheless.

We're going to try our best though it’s difficult for me.


Other examples:

I would like to travel more but it’s difficult for me to find the time.

Even if I can easily understand a test, I’ve many problems to write.

We are going to the country despite the bad weather.

In spite of leaving work late, they always go running.

They played a great match in spite of the fact that they had injured players.

He’s such a great actor despite the fact that he has never studied drama at an academy.


Well done!