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Conjunctions (because & so)

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What are the conjunctions because and so?
Both because and so are conjunctions which comment on actions.  They appear quite similar at first. However, because provides the reason for an action, and sogives the result of or response to an action. For example, look at the following sentences:

    I went to America because I wanted to study English.
    Because I wanted to study English, I went to America.
    I wanted to study English, so I went to America.

What is the sentence structure?
Because is a subordinating conjunction, and should follow the structures below:

    main clause (S+V+O/C)  |  because  |  subordinate clause (S+V+O/C)
    Because  |  subordinate clause (S+V+O/C)  |  ,  |  main clause (S+V+O/C)

    I didn't but the dress  |  because  |  it cost too much.
    Because  |  the dress cost too much  |  ,  |  I didn't buy it.

So is a coordinating conjunction, and shows the result of an action. Here is the structure:

    main clause (S+V+O/C)  |  ,  |  so  |  coordinate clause (S+V+O/C)
    I didn't sleep well last night  |  ,  |  so  |  I felt very tired today.

How are because and so used?
As has been mentioned, because and so connect two ideas. Because provides a reason for the action stated in the main clause. We can also say that because + subordinate clause explains a cause for the action. Moreover, it often introduces information the listener may not know. For example:

    I stayed home because it snowed heavily.  =  The heavy snow caused me to stay home.
    I stayed home because it snowed heavily.  =  The heavy snow caused me to stay home.
    Tim quit because he hated his job.  =  Tim's hatred for work made him quit.

On the other hand, so informs the listener or reader of the result or response to the main action. It may simply state the effect of the main clause, as in the following example:

    I got an MBA last spring, so I found a better job this fall.
    He saw his friend at the coffee shop, so they talked a long time.
    Her doctor told her to exercise more, so she joined a gym last week.

However, so + coordinate clause may also show the logical continuation of two actions. For example:

    Bill bought the peanut butter, so Kelly bought the jelly for their sandwiches.
    Samantha went to the store for snacks, so Alan tidied up before the guests came for dinner.
    I finished my work at home, so my wife took the kids to a movie.

In both examples, the coordinate clauses follow the main clauses to complete an act.

Is there additional information on because and so?
No, nothing else on either because or so.


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