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Can you ever start a sentence with the word "by"?

For learning: English
Base language: English
Category: Language



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    Best Answer - Chosen by Voting
    I'm not sure if there's a rule, but here's a few sentence structures:

    By + [time], [statement]. = The phrase will have been completed by the designated time
    By 9:00, it was already too late.
    By nighttime, we will have arrived home.
    By now, he should be here.
    By then, it will have happened.

    By + [adj. verb phrase], [statement]. = The [phrase] occurred, because the [adj. verb phrase] did.
    By running frequently, you can get fit quickly.
    By carefully and intelligently managing our assets, we improved our finances by over 60%.
    By doing something, something far more dramatic happened.
    By trying to think of examples using the word 'by', I completely exhausted my imagination.

    By the way, + [statement]. = Used when the topic of the statement is not directly relevant to the current conversation. The statement is often a question. This form is used to partially or completely change the conversation - it makes it a lot smoother.
    A: That steak looks delicious.
    B: By the way, did you see the price of steaks this week?

    A: This weather is very good.
    B: By the way, did you hear about...?

    Sure, but carefully. By painstakingly following instructions, we finally accomplished our goal. -This is a clause correctly attached to the sentence. "By painstakingly following instructions" is not a complete sentence, because there is no subject or main verb.

    By the light of the moon, we found our way home. By the old oak tree stood a beautiful deer. By bedtime, he was exhausted. These are also correct, but usually the sentence created is a little complex, and mistakes could be made easily.

    By the way, that is an interesting question. I'm not too sure if my previous opening sentence is a valid one.

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