I was in doubt of which way is better to write:

" Some people started to leave because the weather was beginning to change" or

" Some people started to leave while the weather was beginning to change"

There is no context correlated with this sentence. It was just from an English test. For me, both way make sense, but i would like to know which way sounds better.


  • I think because is better than while – user26522 Nov 16 '15 at 17:49

Actually both sentences are possible as was said before and the test question is a bit ambiguous and not very clear, also said before. But I think the test wanted "because" as the right answer. Primarily one wants to know why some people left the place early and not so much when they went.

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They mean two different things:

  • because says that their leaving was caused by the start of the change in the weather.
  • while says only that their leaving happened at the same time as the start of the change in the weather. No causal relationship is implied.

So neither is inherently better or more correct. Which one you use depends on what you are trying to say.

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  • But, both uses are correct? This sentence is from an English test, and it says that there is only one correct answer. Which one of those sentences sounds better to you ? – user63598 Jan 28 '14 at 19:05
  • @user63598 Neither sounds 'better'. Unless there is some larger context which indicates that one meaning is to be preferred, there is no reason to label either as incorrect. I'm afraid that either you have overlooked some important part of this test, or it was constructed by someone whose knowledge of English is faulty. – StoneyB on hiatus Jan 28 '14 at 19:08
  • 3
    It seems like a lot of English tests are constructed by individuals or companies with a faulty understanding of English. I'm guessing the test-makers were aiming at because being the better sentence, because they were trying to indicate some sort of causality. However, you've done an excellent job of explaining why they did a piss-poor job in this particular instance. – J.R. Jan 28 '14 at 19:55
  • Sometimes it's faulty knowledge; sometimes it's not seeing beyond the bounds of the current lesson. Sometimes it's because a question is removed from its context in a particular lesson: for instance, a bank of questions is drawn from successive exercises in a textbook, and then apparently minor differences are introduced for variety by people who don't know the original context. – StoneyB on hiatus Jan 28 '14 at 20:08

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