Although vs. However

'Although' and 'however' express the meaning 'despite.' In this lesson, we will learn their uses, differences, and similarities.

"Although" vs. "However" in the English grammar

What Is Their Main Difference?

The main difference between 'although' and 'however' is in their parts of speech is that 'although' is a conjunction and 'however' is an adverb.

Parts of Speech

Although

'Although' is a conjunction. It is classified as a concession subordinating conjunction. Have a look:

Although I asked him to stay, he left.

Although he speak Spanish well, his first language is Japanese.

However

'However' is a conjunctive adverb. It is used to join main clauses or to modify a clause. For instance:

The movie was expensive to make. However it failed in the box office.

I have a lot of work to do; however I promised my mother that I would help her.

Meaning

'Although' and 'however' show that something has happened in spite of a hurdle. In other words, they express the meaning 'but' and 'despite.' Watch:

I want to go outside, although it is raining.

I want to go outside. However it is raining.

Take another look at the examples illustrated above. As you can see, while both are conveying the meaning 'but,' 'although' suggests that the decision of going outside has notbeen finalized but 'however' suggests that the decision is finalized.

Position in a Sentence

One of the most important differences between 'although' and 'however' is that 'although' can be used at the beginning or the middle of a sentence. 'However' can be used at the beginning or the end of a new sentence. Have a look:

Although it is raining, I want to go outside.

Here, 'although' is placed at the beginning of the sentence.

I want to go outside, although it is raining.

Here, 'although' is placed at the middle of the sentence.

I want to go outside. However it is raining.

Here, 'however' is placed at the beginning of the second sentence.

I want to go outside. It is raining, however.

Here, 'however' is placed at the end of the second sentence.

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