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Is there a difference between

Though I recruited him, I do not like him.

and

Though I do not like him, I recruited him.

I always wondered if with subordinate conjunctions, the place "though", "although", or "albeit" was used gave a different weight in emphasis or some such nonsense. Does it change the meaning a little or am I just sleep deprived?

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    My feeling is that the two incorporate different assumptions about how the world works and they describe different thought processes. The first implies that you would normally like someone you recruit (but are going against that usual rule of thumb by not liking someone you recruit), the second implies you would normally recruit someone you like (but ignored that rule and recruited someone you didn't like). Also, they put emphasis on the second part because the first is subordinate. Compare "although he wasn't dead, he smelled bad" and "although he smelled bad, he wasn't dead". – Stuart F Nov 1 '19 at 11:10
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    (A) I recruited him. But that doesn't mean I like him. // (B) I don't like him. But that didn't stop me recruiting him. – Edwin Ashworth Nov 1 '19 at 14:25
  • This is a matter of where you wish to place the emphasis. The first statement is the one emphasized. The second is the rebuttal to the first. – Robusto Dec 2 '19 at 3:15
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//Is there a difference between “Though I recruited him, I do not like him.” and “Though I do not like him, I recruited him.”?//

In the first sentence, the main clause is "I DON'T LIKE HIM", and in the second the main clause is I RECRUITED HIM. The other two are dependent/ subsidiary clauses. This is the grammatical/ not semantic difference.

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    This is true, but the question asks if it changes the meaning. – Barmar Nov 1 '19 at 22:43
  • It changes the emphasis. – Hot Licks Dec 2 '19 at 1:38
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When using "though", one is taking about something known, and adding a statement about something that would not normally be concluded from that fact.

So:

  • Though I recruited him, I do not like him.
  • You know that I recruited him, but don't let that lead you to think that I like him.

and

  • Though I do not like him, I recruited him.
  • You know that I don't like him, but I didn't let that stop me from recruiting him.

In both cases, "I do not like him" and "I recruited him" are ideas that many people wouldn't normally associate with each other. The use of "though" allows one to tie them together.

In this case, the speaker is making it explicit that the two independent concepts, being likeable and being competent, are not being conflated.

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