Is it okay if I start a sentence with the phrase "In a (or one) sense" instead of "On one hand" while comparing two things? If so, what about usage of "On the other hand" in starting the counterpoint?


In a sense means "partly true, or true in one way". You could say "in one sense, my brother is a wicked man; in another sense he is not".

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  • Does it mean I can use it interchangeably with "On the one hand"? Because I think "On the one hand" also means "true in one way" as you mentioned. – Steve Apr 25 '18 at 17:16

You use "in a sense" with meanings. As in:

I say (this). In a sense, it is true. In the other is not.

In this particular case, IF there are ONLY two possible senses, you can use "on one hand".

But there can be more senses to a statement. In that case, "on one hand" is not suitable, unless you are willing to get to the part with: "On the fifth hand...".

Additionally, "On one hand" can be used with anything, not only meanings of statements.

On one hand, I want to enjoy the hot sun. On the other hand, I do not want the ice cream to melt, considering I do not have a freezer.

As you can see, "on one hand" is a lot more generic, but applicable when there are only two options to be compared.

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