'in spite of', 'despite', 'although', 'even though' and 'though'

Do you know how to connect two contrasting ideas?

Look at these examples to see how although, even though, in spite of and despite are used.

Although we don't agree, I think she's a brilliant speaker.
Even though we don't agree, I think she's a brilliant speaker.
In spite of the law, people continue to use mobile phones while driving.
Despite the law, people continue to use mobile phones while driving.

Try this exercise to test your grammar.

Grammar test 1

'in spite of', 'despite', 'although', 'even though' and 'though': Grammar test 1

Read the explanation to learn more.

Grammar explanation

Although, even though, in spite of and despite are all used to link two contrasting ideas or show that one fact makes the other fact surprising. They can all be used at the beginning or in the middle of the sentence. 

Despite the rain, we enjoyed the festival.
We enjoyed the festival, despite the rain.

The main difference between although, even though, in spite of and despite is that they are used with different structures. 

in spite of / despite

After in spite of and despite, we use a noun, gerund (-ing form of a verb) or a pronoun.

They never made much money, in spite of their success.
In spite of the pain in his leg, he completed the marathon.
Despite having a headache, I had a great birthday.
The train was cancelled. In spite of that, we arrived on time.

Note that it is common to use in spite of and despite with the expression the fact that, followed by a subject and verb.

In spite of the fact that he worked very hard, he didn't pass the exam.
Despite the fact that he worked very hard, he didn't pass the exam.

although / even though

After although and even though, we use a subject and a verb. Even though is slightly stronger and more emphatic than although.

I enjoyed the course, although I would have liked more grammar practice.
Although we saw each other every day, we didn't really know each other.
Even though she spoke very quietly, he understood every word.
She didn't get the job, even though she had all the necessary qualifications.

though

Though can be used in the same way as although

Though I wasn't keen on the film, I thought the music was beautiful.

Though can also go at the end of the second phrase. This way of expressing contrasting ideas is most common in spoken English.

We waited ages for our food. The waiter was really nice, though.

Do this exercise to test your grammar again.

Grammar test 2

'in spite of', 'despite', 'although', 'even though' and 'though': Grammar test 2

Take your language skills and your career to the next level
Get unlimited access to our self-study courses for only £5.99/month.

Language level

Hi Overcome,

Would you mind asking this question again on our Future Continuous & Future Perfect page? It's a good question, and we'd like other users of LearnEnglish to be able to see your question and our answer on that page, which is more closely related to what you ask about than this page.

Thanks in advance for your help.

Best wishes,

Kirk

The LearnEnglish Team

Submitted by sksinha on Wed, 04/09/2013 - 06:02

Permalink

Hi,

In multiplication tables, what is the word that we recite as "ja"(e.g., four two ja eight)?

 

Hi sksinha,

I had to think about this one for a while, but I think I've worked it out!  When British children are practising their times tables (or multiplication tables), they do it using one of these patterns:

 

4 x 2 = 8

  • four times two equals eight
  • four times two is eight
  • four twos are eight

 

What you are hearing is, I think, the third pattern.  The 'ja' is actually 'are'.

 

I hope that clarifies it for you.

Best wishes,

 

Peter

The LearnEnglish Team

Submitted by Filha_Mori on Thu, 29/08/2013 - 14:08

Permalink

Hello, i'm a new member here.
hope i can improve my English with join in this site.. 
 

Submitted by Amr Fouad on Sun, 04/08/2013 - 13:37

Permalink

Hey,
I am not sure about my English if it's good or bad so is there is any thing to rate my English please?

Hey Amr,

We don't have an online test at the moment, but it's something we're working on.

Best wishes,

Adam

The LearnEnglish Team

Hello Amr Fouad,

I'm afraid we're a small team here at LearnEnglish and we don't have time to personally assess learners' English.  We provide a wide range of materials to help learners improve their English and get to know British culture and society, but for individual assessment of your English you'll need a teacher of your own.

Best wishes,

 

Peter

The LearnEnglish Team

hello mr. peter :) 

i want you to help me with this statement . " it is okey to fail as long as you keep on trying ". it confused me , i said it and someone said to me it's never okey 'to' fail but it okey 'if you' fail as long as you keep on trying . so , what do u say ?

Hello muttaqa maiyama,

Both of these alternatives are correct and have the same meaning in this context.
It's OK to do something / It's OK if you do something

You can use other adjectives in place of 'OK'.  For example:

It's good to warm up before running / It's good if you warm up before running.

It's unwise to leave things to the last minute / It's unwise if you leave things to the last minute.

Best wishes,

 

Peter

The LearnEnglish Team

Submitted by Amr Fouad on Sun, 04/08/2013 - 13:36

Permalink

Please English teachers I want to know difference between (Situations, Attitudes) and I want to know all meanings of (Attitude), Thank you.

Hello Amr Fouad,

I'm really not sure what kind of information you need as your question is very general.  You can find the definitions of these words through the 'Cambridge Dictionaries Online' window on the right of the page.  If you have a specific sentence in mind then please include that in your question and we can give you some help with that.  On the other hand, if your question is more related to teaching English than learning English (and the notions you are asking about seem to suggest that), then you might try posting the question on our sister site for teachers of English:

http://www.teachingenglish.org.uk

Could you also please post the question on a relevant page?  The comments on each page should reflect the content of the page, so here we should have comments related to the information on 'in spite of / despite / although', as otherwise it makes the content difficult for other users to follow.

Best wishes,

 

Peter

The LearnEnglish Team

Submitted by kaleesgl on Sun, 04/08/2013 - 07:59

Permalink

How can i be more clear about using these in sentences?

Submitted by Shabeeb mt on Sat, 03/08/2013 - 16:28

Permalink

Friends.help me to improve my english add me in Facebook for chatting

http:**********************

Hello Shabeeb mt and welcome to LearnEnglish!

It's great that you want to practise your English but please remember the House Rules, which ask members not to post personal information such as Facebook or Skype names, email addresses and so on.

Best wishes,

 

Peter

The LearnEnglish Team

Hello Nazifah,

Welcome to LearnEnglish.  I hope you have a great time here!  Please remember the House Rules, which ask learners not to post or ask for personal information such as Facebook or Skype names, email addresses and so on.

Many thanks,

 

Peter

The LearnEnglish Team

Ok i understand, thank you. can you help me delete my previous comment? because i can't and i want to. Thanks

Please help me check this sentence...

''I didn't want you to ask question i would have said something''

Is it right? if it's not please correct me.

Many thanks to you too.

Hello,

I can, but I'm not sure you really want me to! If I delete your earlier comment, the system will, automatically delete all the replies, including your comment above with the question in it.

Is that OK?

Best wishes,

Adam

The LearnEnglish Team

Submitted by raiyasao on Fri, 02/08/2013 - 05:37

Permalink

Hello, I want to test my English. However, I don't know how to practice in the website. I can only learn grammar. Please tell me? Thanks in advance.

Hello, you can practice or test what you learned below every lesson, and you should say on the website not in, pleased for replying.

Submitted by Assotel on Mon, 29/07/2013 - 21:10

Permalink

hello,

please is the below sentence correct:

I hope the above date and time would be convenient for you, otherwise, kindly let me know what would be suitable for you.

Hello Assotel,

That sentence is polite and clear.  I think I would perhaps use 'will' in place of 'would', however, and you might add 'time' to the second part just to make it as clear as possible:

 

'I hope the above date and time will be convenient for you, otherwise, kindly let me know what time will be suitable for you.'

 

Best wishes,

 

Peter

The LearnEnglish Team

Submitted by BennySue on Sat, 20/07/2013 - 18:07

Permalink

Hello,

I am a Vietnamese. I want to learn English for Job and teach my children. Last month They learnt jolly phonics and tiny talk in english centre. I hope you can help me. Thank you so much!

Hi BennySue,

Well, you've certainly come to the right place for resources for learning English. Have you seen our section on Business & Work (the dark grey tabs near the top of the page)? That might be really useful for you.

As for your kids, it sounds like they are fairly young. Have you seen LearnEnglish Kids? I would highly recommend it - it has materials on phonics for your children. If they are older, there's also LearnEnglish Teens. Please note that links to both of these sites are at the top of every LearnEnglish page.

Good luck!

Best wishes,

Kirk

The LearnEnglish Team

Submitted by Haseelp25 on Sun, 14/07/2013 - 02:30

Permalink
Hy، i like to be fluent in english.! But i dont know keen idea about base !! How can i do it ?

Hello,

I'm a bit confused by your comment, I'm afraid. When you say 'base', do you mean 'basic English'? Also, when you say 'I don't know keen idea', do you mean 'I don't have any good ideas about learning'?

Best wishes,

Adam

The LearnEnglish Team

Submitted by manishichhikara on Wed, 03/07/2013 - 09:14

Permalink

Hello Everyone!

I am Manishi and new to this site.I am working for an international law firm as an admiralty legal assistant and to pursue my career further in law I need to improve upon my written English. Is there anyone who can guide me how to approach in order to fulfill my requirement. I am currently based in Singapore.

Thanks

Regards

Manishi Chhikara

Hello Manishi,

As you live in Singapore you have a great place to learn English right on your doorstep: the British Council!  You can find information about courses there on the website.

I'm sure you will be able to find just what you need there and, of course, you can contact them directly too.

Best wishes and good luck in your learning.

 

Peter

The LearnEnglish Team

Submitted by badr2 on Fri, 28/06/2013 - 23:06

Permalink

hello who has an idea about teaching through games

Hello badr2,

You've asked the same question on another page, where it has already been answered.  Please ask questions only once to save time!

Best wishes,

 

Peter

The LearnEnglish Team

Submitted by Omer from Aden on Tue, 25/06/2013 - 12:44

Permalink

..Hello
My name is Omer and I love to learn English and making friends from around the world. you can add me to your Skype so we can practice English together.

My Skype address is "**********"

looking forword to meet you

Hello Omer,

It's great that you want to practise your English.  However, many of our members are young (under 18 years of age) and so we ask in our House Rules that members do not post personal information like Skype names, email addresses and so on.

Best wishes,

 

Peter

The LearnEnglish Team

Mr: Peter
I understand your point, but how we can  communicate with other members to practice English

Dear Omer,

You can write to them in the comments, but not speak to them. I'm afraid that isn't a facility we offer at the moment. You will have to find other people to speak English with.

Best wishes,

Adam

The LearnEnglish Team

 

Submitted by andres320 on Mon, 24/06/2013 - 07:30

Permalink

Hello everyone.  Here I'm to improve my English.  If there is anyone interesting in chatting to me by Skype or Facebook, it would be great in order to share information and knowledge about English. Thanks.

Hello andres320,

It's great that your want to practise your English, but please remember the LearnEnglish House Rules ask members not to give or ask for any personal information, including Skype names, email addresses and so on.  This is because we have many young people (under eighteen years of age) who use the site.

Many thanks,

 

Peter

The LearnEnglish Team

Submitted by Toto1990 on Sat, 22/06/2013 - 01:47

Permalink

Hello I'm Toto. I'm a new member, my English is terrible so I want to learn English 

I hope you can help me and nice to meet you everyone.

Submitted by AMAKAOJI on Thu, 20/06/2013 - 21:24

Permalink

hi I studied English in the UNIVERSITY and have been teaching it for years I am ready to help anybody.

Submitted by NeQa91 on Thu, 13/06/2013 - 20:39

Permalink

hi i'm neqa. I'm from Indonesia, but i'm staying in Egypt. I've learnt about English however i still need more practice.

Submitted by Mhaad on Sun, 09/06/2013 - 01:43

Permalink

Hi every on help me please my thank you

Submitted by ncastromd on Mon, 03/06/2013 - 00:32

Permalink

This is a great lesson. Thanks

Submitted by Igor Gorod on Fri, 31/05/2013 - 11:50

Permalink

Hi anybody! I  live in Ukraine in Zaporizhzhia. I may to tell about my city, myself etc... but for it need respondent. Who is wish? 

Submitted by raimundo jacin… on Sat, 25/05/2013 - 12:34

Permalink

........... Hi,

   I leave in Presidente Figueiredo city, Amazon, Brazil,... and beginning to learning english... If you can help me..... thanks a lot