1. mercy
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    mercy Senior Member

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    For as a conjunction??

    Discussion in 'Word Mechanics' started by mercy, Jan 10, 2008.

    Is it appropriate to use 'for' as a conjunction, or at the beginning of a sentence?

    Which version is correct?

    This surprised him, for he had never seen....

    This surprised him. For he had never seen....

    By using the word 'for', I am trying to capture an older style of language. Whats your opinion?
     
  2. Cogito
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    Cogito Former Mod, Retired Supporter Contributor

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    In strictest use of English, you should not begin a sentence with a conjunction, although you do see it sometimes:
    Your first example is the correct answer.
     
  3. LinRobinson
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    LinRobinson Banned

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    If there's a comma, then it's not a conjuction anymore, is it? Would be one way to look at it. So there you are.

    Strict English is useful in school, but not too much to writers in the world. And guess who rules? People who write things like "For Whom The Bell Tolls" or "And I Love Her" or the teacher who end up teaching those works?
     
  4. Cogito
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    Cogito Former Mod, Retired Supporter Contributor

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    Strict English defines the construction of well-formed sentences. I agree that everything written as a sentence needs to strictly follow those rules. It is important to understand the rules so you know when you are breaking them, and why.

    So yes, strict English is useful to writers.

    Sorry, but it's a coordinating conjunction linking main clauses. A comma should precede the conjunction in that case (The Little, Brown Compact Handbook, 4th Edition, section 35a).
     

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