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Does "for all the" mean a contrast or a cause and effect?

"For all the work he put in, the project was sure a disaster. "

Does this mean because of all the work he put in, the project was bad? May you infer if he the project was good, then he didn't work hard?

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    Both. It's adversative, meaning 'in spite of' -- there was (a lot of) work put in to bring about a result, but the project was not a success even with all that work. Commented Jul 24, 2023 at 0:16

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MW defines "for all" as "in spite of." So the primary effect is to draw a contrast; one might expect that his work would have led to success, but in fact he nevertheless failed.

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