but

but
I strong UK [bʌt] / US weak UK [bət] / US adverb, conjunction, preposition ***
Summary:

But can be used in the following ways: - As a conjunction (connecting two phrases or clauses): She's 83 but she still goes swimming every day. - As a way of starting a new sentence and connecting it to the previous sentence: It was in Cairo that he met Nadia. But that's another story. - As a preposition (followed by a noun): There's been nothing but trouble since he came. - As an adverb: We can but hope that things will improve.
1)
a) used for introducing a different idea used for joining two ideas or statements when the second one is different from the first one, or seems surprising after the first one

We're making good progress, but we've still got a long way to go.

Anna's a highly intelligent girl, but she's rather lazy.

a simple but effective way of filtering water

What we are about to do is perfectly legal. But please don't discuss it with anyone.

b) used after a negative for introducing what is true instead

His death was not a tragedy, but a release from pain and suffering.

2) mainly spoken used for changing the subject used when you are saying that you should not talk any more about a subject that you have just mentioned

It was a very complicated operation. But I don't want to bore you with all the details.

There's also the question of how we're going to pay for this, but we can discuss that some other time.

3) spoken used in polite questions, requests, and statements used after expressions such as "I'm sorry" and "excuse me" to introduce a polite question, request, or statement

Excuse me, but is there a post office around here?

I'm sorry, but all our operators are busy at the moment.

4) except used especially after words such as "nothing", "everyone", or "anything" to mean "except"

She does nothing but grumble all day long.

I refuse to discuss my medical history with anyone but Dr Grant.

There's no alternative but to scrap the whole plan and start again.

5) formal only only

We can but guess at the extent of the problem.

Several Japanese companies already operate in the UK – Nissan, Honda, Fujitsu, to name but a few.

6) spoken used for expressing surprise used when you are replying to someone and expressing surprise, disagreement, or annoyance

"I've decided to resign." "But why?"

But you promised not to do anything without asking me first.

7) formal without something happening used after negative statements for saying that something does not happen without something else happening or being true

I never take a bath but the phone rings or someone knocks at the door.

last/next but one — in a position that is just before the last one/just after the next one

My name was last but one on the list.

My sister lives next door but one (= there is one house between my house and hers).

no doubt/question but thatformal used for emphasizing that something is certain

There was no doubt but that the poor girl had committed suicide.

See:
if II

II UK [bʌt] / US noun

English dictionary. 2014.

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Synonyms:

Look at other dictionaries:

  • but — but …   Dictionnaire des rimes

  • but — [ by(t) ] n. m. • 1245; probablt frq. °but « souche, billot » 1 ♦ Point visé, objectif. ⇒ 2. blanc, cible. Viser le but. Atteindre, toucher le but (cf. Faire mouche, mettre dans le mille). Manquer le but. Spécialt (Boules) Cochonnet. Pointer une… …   Encyclopédie Universelle

  • but — 1. general. But is a preposition and conjunction, and is used contrastively: (preposition) Everyone seems to know but me / (conjunction) Everyone seems to know but I don t. In more modern usage, as the OED and Fowler (1926) have both recognized,… …   Modern English usage

  • But — (b[u^]t), prep., adv. & conj. [OE. bute, buten, AS. b[=u]tan, without, on the outside, except, besides; pref. be + [=u]tan outward, without, fr. [=u]t out. Primarily, b[=u]tan, as well as [=u]t, is an adverb. [root]198. See {By}, {Out}; cf.… …   The Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • But if — But But (b[u^]t), prep., adv. & conj. [OE. bute, buten, AS. b[=u]tan, without, on the outside, except, besides; pref. be + [=u]tan outward, without, fr. [=u]t out. Primarily, b[=u]tan, as well as [=u]t, is an adverb. [root]198. See {By}, {Out};… …   The Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • but — but·ler; but·ler·age; but·ler·ite; but·lery; but·ter·bump; but·ter·bur; but·ter·i·ness; but·ter·is; but·ter·less; but·ter·man; but·tle; but·ton·er; but·ton·less; but·tony; but·tress·less; but·ty; hack·but; hack·but·eer; hal·i·but; hal·i·but·er;… …   English syllables

  • but — BUT. s. m. L endroit où l on vise. Viser au but. frapper le but. mettre sur le but. atteindre, toucher le but. donner au but. Il sig. fig. La fin que l on se propose. Je n ay autre but en cela, que &c. c est mon but. se proposer un but. On dit… …   Dictionnaire de l'Académie française

  • but — but1 [but; ] unstressed [ bət] prep. [ME < OE butan, buton, without, outside; WGmc comp. < * be , *bi ,BY + * utana, from without: see OUT] 1. with the exception of; excepting; save [nobody came but me ]: earlier, and still sometimes,… …   English World dictionary

  • But.fr — BUT Pour les articles homonymes, voir BUT (homonymie). Logo de BUT Création 1972 …   Wikipédia en Français

  • But ! — But ! Pays  France Langue Français Périodicité Hebdomadaire Genre Presse sportive Date de fondation …   Wikipédia en Français

  • But! — But !  But ! {{{nomorigine}}} Pays …   Wikipédia en Français

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