Difference between Start and Begin | Start vs Begin

So does a match start or begin? Which one is correct? If you ask someone the difference between the words ‘start’ and ‘begin’, they might not be able to point out the exact difference between these words; instead, they might say that both are the same. These words, along with many other pairs of words, are present in the English Language, which students find confusing and end up using them incorrectly sentences.

This article will clear all the confusion related to the words ‘start’ and ‘begin’, and once children go through the points discussed below, they’ll know the difference. So let’s look at the following points.

Table Summarising the Difference between Start and Begin

Begin Start
Meaning The word begin means to initiate an action. The word start means to embark on a mission or commence an event.
Usage It is used as a Verb. It is used as a Verb and a Noun.
Example Joey can begin his classes tomorrow. If you start driving today, you’ll reach by 10 o’ clock tomorrow.

This table shows that the words ‘begin’ and ‘start’ can be used synonymously and interchangeably. We have to remember that the word ‘begin’ has a more formal tone to it than the word ‘start’ does. Once students understand this, it’ll become easy for them to use these words in a sentence.

The Difference between Start and Begin – Meanings

There is basically no difference between the words ‘start’ and ‘begin’, and both these terms can be used interchangeably and synonymously. But unlike the word ‘begin’, which can be used as a verb, ‘start’ can be used as a verb and as well as a noun depending on the context of the situation. Apart from this, there’s not much difference between ‘start’ and’ begin’. Look at this sentence – ‘The sailor started his voyage for the unknown land.’ Here, the word ‘start’ is used as a verb, whereas, in ‘Raj takes over as the manager from the start of next week’ the word ‘start’ is used as a noun. Students have to be careful enough to understand whether they are using the word ‘start’ as a noun or a verb.

Examples of Start and Begin

The following examples will help students understand the terms ‘start’ and ‘begin’ as verbs:

Begin – The marriage ceremony will begin shortly.

Start – You should start reading the novel I gave you.

Once students understand these terms, they can easily use them in sentences of their own.

Start and Begin – Conclusion

To sum up, ‘start’ and ‘begin’ are synonymous, and the only difference between them is the way they are used, i.e., the use of formal tone and informal tone. Once students understand that ‘begin’ is used more formally and ‘start’ isn’t, it will be easy for them to understand and use them in the correct context. BYJU’S offers various articles on many such ‘Difference Between’ two words that children often get confused with.


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