"How closely our interests align may surprise you."

Is it grammatically correct to start this phrase with "how"? If not, what rule makes that so? Is there a better way to say this? Thanks for any input!

  • 1
    What are you asking? Define phrase in this case. The sentence you give doesn't start with how; it starts with if so. Or by phrase are you referring to the portion of the sentence that starts with how and ends with you? (You might want to put the phrase you mean in bold or something.) Also, are you questioning it in conjunction with if so specifically? If not, why not just drop those two words and start the sentence with how? Apr 30, 2019 at 3:57
  • Good idea on emboldening the part after the comma - at the time I couldn't think of an elegant way to refer to it. The validity of the phrase in question has nothing to do with it being preceded by "If so", so I'll drop it as to not confuse anyone else.
    – Elliott
    Apr 30, 2019 at 10:09

1 Answer 1


The sentence itself is grammatically correct. In this use, how is an adverb, not a conjunction, describing the degree of closeness, and it is perfectly acceptable to begin a phrase with an adverb. For example: Even camels need to drink.

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