French Conjunctions of Conclusion: How to Use Them

These conjunctions help us tell a good story with a conclusion at the end.

The French conjunctions parce que, car, puisque, and comme are commonly used to draw conclusions or otherwise relate a cause or explanation with a result or conclusion. These conjunctions have similar but not identical meanings and uses. 

They fall into the two basic categories of conjunctions; coordinating, which join words or groups of words of equal value; and subordinating, which join dependent clauses to main clauses.

Conjunctions of conclusion are one or the other, depending on the conjunction. 

Parce que > Because

Parce que is a subordinating conjunction and can begin a sentence. Parce que introduces a cause, explanation, or motive. It basically explains why something is done.

   Je ne suis pas venu parce que mon fils est malade.
   I didn't come because my son is sick.

   Parce qu'il n'a pas d'argent, il ne peut pas venir.
   Because he doesn't have any money, he can't come.

Car > Because, For

Car is a coordinating conjunction, should not begin a sentence, and is mainly found in formal and written French. Car supports a judgment or indicates a reason.

   La réunion fut annulée car le président est malade.
   The meeting was canceled because the chairman is sick.

   David ne va pas venir, car il est à l'université.
   David isn't coming, for he is (away) at school.

Puisque > Since, Because

Puisque is a subordinating conjunction and can begin a sentence.

Puisque gives an obvious explanation or justification, rather than a cause.

   Tu peux partir puisque tu es malade.
   You can leave, since you're sick.

   Puisque c'était son erreur, il m'a aidé.
   Since it was his mistake, he helped me.

Comme > As, Since

Comme is a subordinating conjunction and usually begins a sentence.

Comme highlights the link between a consequence and its result.

   Comme je lis le plus vite, j'ai déjà fini.
   Since I read the fastest, I've already finished.

   Comme il est faible, il ne pouvait pas le lever.
   Since he is weak, he couldn't lift it.