Some frown upon starting and ending a sentence with a preposition; however, others feel it is perfectly acceptable. This page examines whether you can start a sentence with the word “of” and provides examples to show the term in use.
Can You Start a Sentence With “Of”?
Of all the words to start a sentence with, using the word “of” is perfectly acceptable and widespread. When a noun follows it, the noun is usually plural because it means “Out of them all.” However, when starting with “of course,” the noun can be singular or plural.
There are many circumstances where you can start a sentence with “of,” which are not considered incorrect.
For instance, using “of” at the start is often done to indicate something like:
“of all of …….., this is the one that….”
- Of all the countries in the world, Peru is the place I want to visit the most.
- Of all the people I know, she is the one I love the most.
As you can see in this type of structure, the noun is usually plural, and you are generally specifying one from a group
However, there are other situations where the noun is not plural:
- Of an evening, I like to sit in the garden and read.
- Of anything beyond this life, I am unaware.
In these examples, the use of the word “of” is quite formal, and you may not see this type of sentence every day, but they are nonetheless correct.
Another common way to start a sentence with “of” is to use “of course”, which refers more to inevitability or stating the obvious.
- Of course, we didn’t last long playing football because we are so unfit.
- Of course, after eating two ice creams, he felt sick.
Can You Start a Sentence With “Of Course”?
Of course, it is perfectly acceptable to start a sentence with the term “of course,” and it is frequently done.
The Cambridge Dictionary states that “of course” is an idiom that is used to refer to something obvious, unsurprising, or inevitable.
Here are some sentences that start with “of course”:
- Of course, we got lost, considering we didn’t take a map.
- Of course, I already knew what he was telling me, but I smiled and nodded anyway.
- Of course, she did well on the exam; she always does well.
- Of course, after analysing the sales figures, we decided to shut up shop for good.
Examples of Starting a Sentence With “Of”
Here are three types of sentences that can be started with “of”:
1. Specifying something or“one” from plural nouns:
- Of all the days, he had to be sick today.
- Of all the people we met, I thought Mary was the nicest.
- Of all the things he could have done, he went and did that!
- Of all the beaches I have visited, San Carlos, Sonora is my favourite.
2. Random phrases/terms – Often, these types of sentences are a little “poetic” sounding and often involve reversing some parts of the sentence, which is permitted.
- Of a morning, I like to do yoga and play the violin. (This is quite an informal but somewhat “posh” UK usage “of an evening/morning/afternoon” and means “generally in the evening/morning/afternoon.”
- Of anything he may say, you should be sceptical.
- Of what he said, I understood very little.
3. Starting with “of course”:
- Of course, he fell asleep before the end of the film, as always.
- Of course, if you treat others a certain way, they will treat you the same way.
- Of course, he said he had done the work, but he hadn’t.
Is It OK to Start a Sentence With a Preposition?
The short answer to this question is that you can start a sentence with a preposition. No rule states you can’t, and it is widespread to do so.
Perhaps, you should avoid doing it repeatedly in the same text because it may sound a little “off”, but throwing in the odd sentence with a preposition at the start is perfectly fine.
Starting a sentence with “of” is perfectly acceptable and is usually done to specify one from a group. For this usage, the noun is usually plural. Furthermore, “of” can also be used in “of course”, in which case it refers to something obvious or inevitable.