There is a somewhat uncommon type of OSV (object–subject–verb) form in spoken and literary English that I've noticed. This is also how the character in Star Wars, Yoda, talks, and there have been a few question here asking about it in other literary works. The Wikipedia entry also says it's used in hyperbation, but it seems to imply that this is where it ends in natural English. However, I've noticed in common speech as well. Consider the following sentence I heard from a friend.

It’s really only my bio mom. My bio dad I have never met.

To me, this doesn't feel like an unnatural sentence. I could imagine saying this if the thought of my bio dad came first in my mind and how that relates to what I said before came after. Like "My bio dad....I have never met".

This form also seems to me to be very similar to the contrast-emphasizing topic marker in Korean and Mongolian (and I think Japanese too) where you can start the sentence with the object attaching the topic marker and making that what the sentence is about. It might look like "Him-(topic) I like" (as opposed to someone else I don't like). This is despite the fact that these languages are generally SOV (subject-object–verb). Indeed, that Wikipedia article states that this phenomena in SOV languages could have been how actual OSV languages developed according to some theoretical analyses.

I am curious if this phenomena in common English is studied more rigorously elsewhere and if they are able to tie it to other languages and their grammars.

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    I had to look up hyperbaton - no 'i' - and it seems to describe exactly what is used in your example. The word order is reversed to emphasise the subject (My bio dad) as opposed to mom mentioned in the first clause. Commented Apr 7, 2022 at 10:14
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    It's an example of preposing. In your example the object complement of "met" is preposed to a position before the subject, "I". Preposed complements serve as a link to the preceding discourse, i.e. they relate to information previously introduced into the discourse. Preposing is perfectly natural when used in an appropriate context.
    – BillJ
    Commented Apr 7, 2022 at 10:30
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    Hello. Okoyos. I'm afraid your covert questions (1) Is this phenomenon, OSV used in everyday English, studied more rigorously in articles etc you can list? and (2) How does English compare with other languages with respect to everyday use of OSV sentence order? are both off-topic on ELU. The second certainly looks like it might fit well on Linguistics.SE, while the former, a request for resources, belongs on ELU.meta. // OSV is addressed on ELU, there being 27 hits for an in-house search for OSV. Commented Apr 7, 2022 at 11:37
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    It's better to say that examples like the one cited by the OP belong in the information packaging domain rather than as being evidence that OSV clause structure exists as a regular phenomenon in English.
    – BillJ
    Commented Apr 7, 2022 at 12:38
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    I feel like this is an example of left dislocation, where the semantic "topic" of the sentence (which could be the subject or the object or even a part of a prepositional phrase) is dislocated from its normal position and put at the beginning of the sentence for emphasis. It is very common in modern French, but not so much in modern English. "My bio dad, he is not in my life," is another example of left dislocation, except with the subject instead of the object. Commented Apr 7, 2022 at 14:26


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