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Concessive clause - Although, even though...


Concessive clause

A concessive clause is a clause which begins with "although" or "even though" and which expresses an idea that suggests the opposite of the main part of the sentence.

The sentence "Although he's quiet, he's not shy" begins with a concessive clause- "Although he's quiet " which has an opposite meaning of - "he's not shy" which is the main part of the sentence.

NOTE: " In spite of" , " despite" have similar meaning to "although" or "even though". BUT they don't introduce clauses. They have different syntax. They are followed by nouns or gerunds (verb+ing.) They don't introduce a clause (subject + verb.)

Although, even though:

Study these examples:

"He had enough money."
" He refused to buy a new car."

The above two statements can be combined as follows :

Although
Even though

he had enough money,
he refused to buy a new car

OR

He refused to buy a new car

although
even though
he had enough money.

Structure:

"Although", and "even though" introduce concessive clauses.

Although /even though
subject
verb

Examples:

Although it was raining, he walked to the station.
Even though she is very old, she runs fast.       

Despite / in spite of:

Despite and in spite of do not introduce a concessive clause. They are rather followed by a noun or a verb+ing form.

Study this example:

"He had enough money."
"He refused to buy a new car."

The above two statements can be combined as follows :

Despite
In spite of

all his money,
he refused to buy a new car.
having enough money,

OR

He refused to buy a new car

despite
in spite of
all his money.
having enough money.

Structure

Despite / in spite of
+ a noun,
+ verb + ing.

Examples:

Despite /in spite of the rain, he walked to the station.
Despite /in spite of being tired, he walked to the station.

Remember:

1. Although, even though + subject + verb (Concessive clause)

3. In spite of, despite + noun or verb+ing (Not a concessive clause)

2. There are structural similarities between:

  • "in spite of", "despite" and "although", "even though"
  • "because of", "due to", "owing to", "thanks to" and "because", "since ,"as", "for". (Expressing cause and effect)
In spite of
Despite
+ noun
Because of
Due to
owing to
Thanks to
Although
Even though
+ verb
Because
Since
For
As

More on cause and effect to see the use of "because, since, as, for, because of, due to ... "

Exercises on although, in spite of...

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