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I need your opinion about the word order in the following sentence:

  • “In her garden grows a cherry tree.“

Is it grammatically acceptable?

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    You might be interested in our sister site: English Language Learners Feb 26, 2014 at 16:30
  • You will rarely hear that order in spoken English, but it is quite common in novels of a higher register and will confuse only the daftest of listeners.
    – Anonym
    Feb 26, 2014 at 16:42
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    As a side note: Explain me, please means: Can you explain why I am the way I am? Explain this to me means: Can you give me an explanation?
    – David M
    Feb 26, 2014 at 16:42

2 Answers 2

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The sentence is fine, although the normal word order is "A cherry tree grows in her garden."

"In her garden is a cherry tree" is an example of locative inversion, where the verb and subject of a sentence have swapped positions, and the locative ("in her garden") has moved to the front of the sentence.

This pdf has some more examples, for instance:

"Outside were five police officers"

"Down the hill rolled the baby carriage"

Locative inversion is mainly used in written English, for emphasis or to sound poetic.

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"A cherry-tree grows in her garden", or "there is a cherry tree growing in her garden" would be more usual, but "in her garden grows a cherry-tree" is certainly acceptable, and indeed rather poetic.