You can end a sentence with “however” in formal and informal writing, but it is most commonly used in formal writing. The meaning of “however” at the end of a sentence is the same as “though.” E.g., “I can’t make it tonight. I can meet you tomorrow, however.”
The word “however” can be placed at almost any part of a sentence, including the start, middle, and end. The function of “however” is to refer back to previous information.
These four examples show where you can place “however.” Note that there is no difference in meaning between any of the sentences.
- I like Italian food. However, my wife prefers Thai.
- I like Italian food; however, my wife prefers Thai.
- I like Italian food. My wife, however, prefers Thai.
- I like Italian food. My wife prefers Thai, however.
The term “however” at the end of a sentence refers to the previous sentence or clause. It shows contrast or change between the sentences or clauses.
- He admitted that he had been stealing, at least. We do not think he can continue working here, however.
- The whole situation was unfair. I am glad because justice was served in the end, however.
Perhaps you still have doubts about using “however” at the end of a sentence. If so, carry on reading because the next section deals with how to use “however” in formal and informal writing.
Can You End a Sentence With “However” in Formal Writing?
It is acceptable and common to end sentences with “however” in formal writing.
The word “however” at the end of a sentence refers to the previous clause or sentence.
Here are some examples of formal sentences with “however” at the end:
- The markets improved somewhat this week. The overall forecast for the next twelve months is gloomy, however.
- Green energy initiatives have received government funding. Oil companies continue to post record profits, however.
If you wish to use an alternative to “however” at the end of a sentence, you can use one of the following synonyms:
- All the same
Also, remember that you can always rearrange your sentence to place “however” at the beginning or in the middle of the sentence. However, this is only a choice of preference. It is perfectly correct to keep “however” at the end of a sentence.
Can You End a Sentence With “However” in Informal Writing?
You can end a sentence with “however” in informal writing. However, it is not that common.
You will mostly come across it in informal business emails rather than casual messages between friends and family.
If people use the word “however” in informal English, they tend to place it at the start of a sentence or in the middle rather than at the end.
Here are some examples of informal sentences with “however” at the end.
- Just to let you know, we will be staying for four days. We don’t arrive until Friday evening, however.
- We paid for the luxury service. What we got was far from luxurious, however.
Also, in informal English, it is more common to use a synonym such as the ones below:
- After all
- All the same
- In any case
Some of these synonyms may not apply to specific situations. However, the most common synonym for using at the end of a sentence is “though.”