Words like despite and although are unique elements in grammar that help form creative and complex sentences. However, many people tend to confuse such words and think of them as the same. But that is not true.
While words like despite and although carry almost the same meaning, they have different usage. These terms are used under different contexts pertaining to different grammatical rules. The main difference between them that eventually brings about the difference in their usage is that the word although is a member of the subordinating conjunctions, and the word despite is a preposition.
Despite vs Although
Despite has the same meaning as although, which means in spite of the fact or something, used to show a contrast in ideas. But since it is a preposition, it is always used before a pronoun or a noun in a sentence.
- I was trying hard despite the pain in my chest.
- We had a good day despite the injury.
Although, on the other hand, is used as a subordinating conjunction. That means it is used before a clause to join it with another clause, which basically consists of an independent clause and dependent clause. Despite cannot link clauses. Nevertheless, the meaning remains the same. Although also shows in spite of something, an idea of contrast in a sentence.
- Although I passed, I was not satisfied with the rank.
- Although she cried, her mother did not care about her.
So, the basic difference is that one is a preposition, and the other is a conjunction. One comes before a noun, and the other before a clause.