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    • Join Date: Sep 2006
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    #1

    for or because

    Hi ,
    Please can someone help me learn the usage of for and because ?Is for used in place of because without any change in the meaning?
    Thanks .


    • Join Date: Oct 2006
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    #2

    Re: for or because

    For is completely different from because.

    Say you are going to the shop. You would be going FOR cigarettes.

    You say because when you are saying the reason you are going to the shop. For example - I am going to the shop for cigarettes BECAUSE i am needing one.

    Now i have helped you can you answer my Help From Scotland thread?

  1. Philly's Avatar

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    #3

    Re: for or because

    Hi aysenakartuna
    .
    The word for can also be used similarly to because -- to give a reason for something. However, using for this way is a more literary usage. Also, you can begin a sentence with because, but you cannot do the same thing with for. And finally, using for is a bit like adding the reason as an afterthought.
    .
    He told the truth because he is simply incapable of lying.
    Because he is simply incapable of lying, he told the truth.
    .
    He was dead tired, for he'd been working hard since dawn.

    .
    I would advise you not to look at these two words as freely interchangeable.

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    #4

    Re: for or because

    Quote Originally Posted by Philly View Post
    Also, you can begin a sentence with because, but you cannot do the same thing with for.
    Is that a prescriptive rule?


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    #5

    Re: for or because

    Quote Originally Posted by Philly View Post
    Hi aysenakartuna
    .
    The word for can also be used similarly to because -- to give a reason for something. However, using for this way is a more literary usage. Also, you can begin a sentence with because, but you cannot do the same thing with for. And finally, using for is a bit like adding the reason as an afterthought.
    .
    He told the truth because he is simply incapable of lying.
    Because he is simply incapable of lying, he told the truth.
    .
    He was dead tired, for he'd been working hard since dawn.
    .
    I would advise you not to look at these two words as freely interchangeable.
    Philly, thank you very much for the information you gave me .The point is really clear now.

  2. Philly's Avatar

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    #6

    Re: for or because

    Quote Originally Posted by Philly View Post
    Also, you can begin a sentence with because, but you cannot do the same thing with for.
    Quote Originally Posted by dihen View Post
    Is that a prescriptive rule?
    Prescriptive? Well, let's put it this way, dihen: You might find the word for at the beginning of a sentence in the King James Bible, for example. But I'd say it would still be the same sort of "afterthought" format. In other words, a reason given for the previous sentence/statement. You cannot start off with the reason using the word for the same way you can with the word because. What I wrote is what I read and hear and do/don't do myself in modern usage.
    .
    In my humble opinion, if you decide to ignore this piece of advice, then you're likely to end up sounding pretty darn peculiar to a native speaker.
    .

  3. MikeNewYork's Avatar
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    #7

    Re: for or because

    Quote Originally Posted by Philly View Post
    Hi aysenakartuna
    .
    The word for can also be used similarly to because -- to give a reason for something. However, using for this way is a more literary usage. Also, you can begin a sentence with because, but you cannot do the same thing with for. And finally, using for is a bit like adding the reason as an afterthought.
    .
    He told the truth because he is simply incapable of lying.
    Because he is simply incapable of lying, he told the truth.
    .
    He was dead tired, for he'd been working hard since dawn.
    .
    I would advise you not to look at these two words as freely interchangeable.
    I think you meant that you cannot use "for" as "because" to begin a sentence. Obviously sentences can begin with "for" in other uses.

    Even at that "for" (for because) has been used to begin sentences in poetry and song.
    Here are a few lines from "Fields of Athenry".

    Michael, they have taken you away.
    For you stole Trevelyan's corn,
    So your son might see the morn.
    Now a prison ship lies waiting in the bay.

  4. Philly's Avatar

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    #8

    Re: for or because

    Hi Mike
    .
    Yes, of course, everything I wrote is in reference to the use of for with a meaning similar to because.
    .
    I see that for as a sort of "afterthought" is there in your example, too.
    .

  5. MikeNewYork's Avatar
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    #9

    Re: for or because

    Quote Originally Posted by Philly View Post
    Hi Mike
    .
    Yes, of course, everything I wrote is in reference to the use of for with a meaning similar to because.
    .
    I see that for as a sort of "afterthought" is there in your example, too.
    .
    I understand your thought about afterthoughts. In this case, it clearly means "because". Michael was sent to prison because he stole the Crown's corn.

  6. Philly's Avatar

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    #10

    Re: for or because

    Yes, I understand, understood, had understood, have been understanding, will continue to understand, etc. that it means because, Mike.
    My point here was that the reason is given after the information that he went to prison. That's all I'm saying.
    .
    The initial point I was trying to make is that using for to mean because, you won't get the "for clause" first. This isn't the case when because is used to join two clauses. You can begin with the "because clause".
    .
    Even if a sentence begins with for, then that "for sentence" will also come after what it is giving the reason for -- as in your example.
    .

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