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Can I begin a sentence with a conjunction?

Many have tried to get writers of English to stop using coordinating conjunctions (e.g., and, but, for, nor, or, so, yet) to start sentences. Generally, coordinating conjunctions are used to join words, phrases, and clauses that are balanced as logical equals and are used to coordinate two independent clauses. Because coordinating conjunctions are used to hold together elements within a sentence, some teachers have discouraged their students from starting sentences with coordinating conjunctions. However, their real mission is to help their students learn to avoid sentence fragments like, "And smart, too." It is important to know that when you are writing in informal contexts and decide to start a sentence with a coordinating conjunction, you must be sure that what follows it is an independent clause, capable of standing alone as a sentence. In formal writing, it is best to avoid beginning any sentence with a conjunction.

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