Grammar Myth #2

You can’t start a sentence with and or but.

Grammar mythsBut of course you can. This is another worn-out rule that needs to be debunked. I don’t even know how it began, because people have been beginning sentences with and and but since the 10th century.

One caveat: even people who support the use of and and but to begin sentences believe that overuse leads to monotony. But what is overuse? Personally, I never begin a sentence with and or but more than once each in a paragraph. In my experience, more frequent use gives the writing a droning quality. And if I can go several paragraphs without using them that way, so much the better. When used properly, however, beginning sentences with and and but can actually introduce a continuity and colloquial feeling to your writing.

Also, see grammar myth #1: You can’t end a sentence with a preposition.

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Copyright 2007