Beginning a sentence with a conjunction

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Beginning a sentence with a conjunction :

It offends those who wish to confine English usage in a logical straitjacket that writers often begin sentences with “and” or “but.”

True, one should be aware that many such sentences would be improved by becoming clauses in compound sentences; but there are many effective and traditional uses for beginning sentences thus. One example is the reply to a previous assertion in a dialogue:

“But, my dear Watson, the criminal obviously wore expensive boots or he would not have taken such pains to scrape them clean.”

Make it a rule to consider whether your conjunction would repose more naturally within the previous sentence or would lose in useful emphasis by being demoted from its position at the head of a new sentence.

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