|photo by Christina|
This is another area in which caution must be used.
The word "but" should always be observed carefully, particularly observing the words that follow the word "but" in comparison to what preceded it. It can refute what preceded it, or can be used to compare, or even negate what preceded it.
"I love you, but I am leaving you" is a good example. The word "but" is the single most important word as it refutes, negates, or, in some sense, lessens the love the subject has.
"I love you, but I can't live with you" is another.
Does it completely negate the love? Not necessarily. It negates living together.
"I like pizza, but I love lobster" has the word "but", yet it does not negate liking pizza, but only compares it.
We must be careful how we word our analysis and how we conclude our analysis.
It is safe to always recognize the word "but", but we must also make sure we are staying within the setting.
"I have but one..." is an expression I have heard using various nouns. This may be a regional expression, like being "wicked hot" or "wicked good" in Maine. "I have but one sports coat" a man once said when asked about why, in the debate of "North Versus South" (War Between the States) where the man representing the North was wearing a gray suit, while the Southern apologist was wearing a blue suit.
"I want to help search for my son but..." will be noted as, in cause and effect, negating helping search.
In some context, the word but is, in deed, a negation of what preceded it, yet in other usages, it is only a comparison, with the words after the word but considered a 'greater' or more positive comparison.
Be careful to discern between refutation and negation, and simple comparison. The simple comparison is, 'less' and 'more' and not a refutation or denial.
Note refutation versus comparison. Keep a strong view on context.