Despite or In Spite Of

Is despite better than in spite of? Do they mean different things? What about in despite of?

Mignon Fogarty
1-minute read

"In spite of" and "despite" mean the same thing and are interchangeable. For example, it is correct to say either of the following:

  • She ran well despite having old shoes.
  • She ran well in spite of having old shoes.

Some people prefer "despite" because it is shorter.

Despite the fact that you can choose which word to use, merging them into "in despite of" is wrong.

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About the Author

Mignon Fogarty

Mignon Fogarty is the founder of Quick and Dirty Tips and the author of seven books on language, including the New York Times bestseller "Grammar Girl's Quick and Dirty Tips for Better Writing." She is an inductee in the Podcasting Hall of Fame, and the show is a five-time winner of Best Education Podcast in the Podcast Awards. She has appeared as a guest expert on the Oprah Winfrey Show and the Today Show. Her popular LinkedIn Learning courses help people write better to communicate better.

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