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English definition of “but”


preposition, conjunction     strong /bʌt/ weak /bət/
B1 except: Eventually , all but one of them promised to come to his leaving party . He's anything but violent (= not violent in any way). I'd have crashed the car but for your warning . This is the last episode but one (= one before the last) of this drama serial . She's one of those guests who does nothing but complain . This car has been nothing but trouble - it's always breaking down!Excluding Grammar:ButBut is a conjunction.Grammar:But as a linking wordWe use but to link items which are the same grammatical type (coordinating conjunction). But is used to connect ideas that contrast.Grammar:But meaning ‘except’But means ‘except’ when it is used after words such as all, everything/nothing, everyone/no one, everybody/nobody:Grammar:But for + reasonBut for is used to introduce the reason why something didn’t happen:Grammar:All but meaning ‘almost completely’Grammar:Conjunctions: contrastingThe conjunctions but and although/though connect ideas that contrast. Whereas is also used but it is not as common:Grammar:ButBut is a coordinating conjunction used to connect ideas that contrast. Coordinating conjunctions connect items which are the same grammatical type.Grammar:Although/thoughAlthough/though can be used to contrast ideas. Although/though are subordinating conjunctions used to connect a subordinate clause to a main clause, like after, as, before, if, since, that, even though, even if.Grammar:But or although?But cannot be used in the same way as although/though. We use but to connect items which are the same grammatical type (coordinating conjunction).Grammar:Even though, even ifEven though and even if are also used as subordinating conjunctions in the same way as although/though. Even though is similar to although but it makes a stronger contrast:Grammar:Conjunctions: typical errors[from a brochure advertising an English course in London]
(Definition of but prepositionconjunction from the Cambridge Advanced Learner's Dictionary & Thesaurus © Cambridge University Press)
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