I am confused about this word "attached" when I receive a letter begins like this: Dear XX, attached is a document for…… Here, the word "attached" is used somehow like a noun which means attachment, is that right?


2 Answers 2


No, attached is an adjective adjected to the noun document. What confuses you is the word order. Your example is equivalent to

.. a document for .. is attached.

Changing the word order does not change the role of attached.

  • Ach so! Vielen Dank! Thank you very much!
    – Sissel
    Commented Apr 5, 2019 at 13:42

[1] Dear XX, a document for x is attached.

[2] Dear XX, attached is a document for x

No: "attached" is not a noun but an adjective.

This is about subject-dependent inversion:

[1] is the basic version, but [2] combines the preposing of the AdjP "attached" and postposing of the subject NP "a document for x".

  • What is an AdjP? (Do English words admit of this typographical form?) What is an NP?
    – Toothrot
    Commented Apr 5, 2019 at 20:03
  • @Toothrot AdjP=adjective phrase, NP=noun phrase. These are fairly standard abbreviations throughout the world of grammar. The others are VP (verb phrase), DP (determinative phrase), AdvP (adverb phrase), PP (preposition phrase).
    – BillJ
    Commented Apr 6, 2019 at 6:51

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