Questions tagged [inversion]

Questions about reversing the order of a clause’s subject and verb, including subject–auxiliary inversion in questions and normal subject–verb swap in locative, directive, copular, and quotative inversions.

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Negative Inversions

I am familiar with inversions, but I'm not sure about the following inversions. Would anyone say the ones in bold - or start a sentence that way? Not entirely am I not convinced… Not entirely am I ...
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53 views

Not till (sentence) + do ( sentence) [duplicate]

Can someone explain the structure of the following sentence? Not till he got home did he realise that he had lost his mobile. Why we are doing inversion here ?
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2answers
208 views

“Not sure what the contact’s full name is?” vs. “Not sure what is the contact’s full name" [duplicate]

In an application I am writing, I require the user to state a contact's full name. I have a disagreement with my marketing director regarding the correct wording for when the user doesn't know the ...
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1answer
4k views

Which is correct, “why should people be aware of…” or “why people should be aware of…”? [closed]

I just want to know which one is correct. I have asked the same question to someone and she said that the latter is more acceptable but the first one's not wrong but can be changed for it to be "...
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1answer
347 views

Is it possible to say “The larger the area of forest is destroyed, the more frequent are natural disasters”? [closed]

For the sake of emphasis, is it possible to write: "The larger the area of forest is destroyed, the more frequent are natural disasters"?
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3answers
322 views

Is “What courses is everyone taking?” grammatical?

A friend and I are having an argument over which of the following is correct: What courses is everyone taking? What courses are everyone taking? I say the first is grammatical, because in the ...
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1answer
4k views

What's the difference between “(Had he not made / If he didn't make) a good impression, he wouldn't be a star today”?

How should I complete this sentence? (Only with the options given) He wouldn't be the star he is today ________ a good impression in his early life A. Had he not made B. If he didn't make ...
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2answers
492 views

Inversion in affirmative sentences with a complex subject

I just wrote to somebody almost these exact words: "I cannot remember when was the last time I felt like this before" and then it hit me I made a boo-boo as the sentence is affirmative, so I should ...
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1answer
629 views

Inversion after “only now”

I was wondering if the following sentence was grammatically correct: "Only now am I sure who is my real friend." I found it in my grammar book and I am confused. Thanks in advance :)
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53 views

To what place (does/do) either the man or his sons wish to go? [duplicate]

I have a problem with this situation. Would you mind helping me? To what place (does/do) either the man or his sons wish to go? Can you show me which is correct? do or does is correct?
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1answer
1k views

Inversion with a prepositional phrase [duplicate]

I understand inversion but I have a difficulty when it comes down to "there." A: Under the window there stood a vase. B: Under the window stood a vase. Here my teacher said that option B is correct. ...
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5answers
1k views

Inversion after “only a few years ago”

Can anyone please tell me why we don't use inversion after "only a few years ago"? Today I was doing one of the CPE exercises from Side and Wellman and I encountered the following sentence : "...
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3answers
498 views

Fronting correct use

I have this phrase (created myself) He was entering into the office slowly / Slowly, he was entering into the office. (there shouldn't be difference I suppose) Now, the rules say that if I have ...
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Is this 'inversion' common in spoken English? [duplicate]

While I was listening to a guided meditation by Jon Kabat-Zinn (who is a Native English-Speaker) I bumped into an expression that appears to contain a sort of inversion in an affirmative sentence. I'...
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1answer
391 views

Which houses (are/is) this road connected to? [duplicate]

We are having a debate at my work on if "are" or "is" is the right word to use in the above sentence (actually, a similar sentence which is work-related). I am aware that there are other ways of ...
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1answer
77 views

What is the meaning and structure of this sentence?

Little is more disconcerting to the average citizen than the seeming inability of economists to agree on anything I thinks this sentence is formed by inversion. Please, let me know. Thanks!
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58 views

“How will history remember” vs “How history will remember”? [duplicate]

Context: there is a war going on. Actual use: A difficult winter is heading their way. But Jonas means to change all that. He finds himself wondering how will history remember this day. MS Word ...
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3answers
134 views

Inverse of 'be'? [closed]

## Context (I apologize for the technical programmery context. The root of the question is English though) I have a static class method is that takes in some object and returns whether that object ...
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2answers
157 views

Is there any noun phrase having its inverted version also a noun phrase? [closed]

I may not express my question clear enough in the title. Here I give some examples and it would be explicit to all of us. Example1: 'book ticket' vs 'ticket book' Example2: 'bill order' vs 'order ...
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1answer
476 views

Subject + there + verb

Currently, I read Paradise Lost of John Milton and I found a grammatical structure I have not met yet. The sentence is: Pandemonium, the palace of Satan, rises, suddenly built out of the deep: the ...
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1answer
1k views

Someone care to explain what those things are/what are those things?

What is the difference between: Someone care to explain what those things are? and Someone care to explain what are those things? Are these both correct? Which one should I use?
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1answer
161 views

Subject–auxiliary inversions beginning with an adverb

I am interested in subject–auxiliary inversions when the sentence begins with an adverb or an adverbial phrase. If the adverb is not negative (for instance, "not only" or "never"), can we invert the ...
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1answer
93 views

purposes(intention) of the inversion of normal word order

Is it better to make important life decisions on your own or is it better to consult other people? There are good reasons for both, I suppose. Ultimately, it’s your life so I suppose you ...
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1answer
121 views

What is (do) for here?

I know that if do come between the pronoun and the verb, it makes the verb stronger. Does it work the same if it came before the verb. This is the text: Only after the trucks have passed through my ...
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1answer
38 views

Struggling with inversion [closed]

(The guy that was fired) - For what he was responsible? (The guy that was fired) - For what was he responsible? (The guy that was fired) - What for he was responsible? (The guy that was fired) - What ...
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2answers
1k views

Is there a grammatical term for moving a word to the front or back of a sentence?

There is a function in Arabic grammar where you may bring forward in sentence order a word - as well as deferring it. For example: if the sentence order is Subject - Verb - Object, you can bring the ...
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1answer
101 views

Is it Ok to place a prepositional phrase before 'there is/are'?

In the center of the room there is a column. vs. There is a column in the center of the room. If both are grammatical, is there a preferable way? Does context or style influence the choice? -- ...
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1answer
470 views

Can the subject go at the end of a clause?

I've recently come across the following sentence: Round the corner walked Hannah, and nearly bumped into Louise. The first clause sounds clumsy to me. I think the example above should be written ...
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2answers
8k views

“Guess What am I cooking” vs “Guess What I am cooking” [duplicate]

I'm really confused between these two. Please help.
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1answer
93 views

Inversion: “It holds fast as a principle Occam's Razor” [closed]

I want to write a sentence with the same meaning as: It holds fast to Occam's Razor as a principle A simpler version of the above is: It holds Occam's Razor as a principle I want to arrange ...
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2answers
613 views

Inversion/non-inversion in wh-questions with long phrases after the wh-words

Can a sentence like this: "I don't know who the first man that made such and such thing in such and such place was," be grammatically correct if we don't put "was" at the end of the long phrase, ...
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0answers
50 views

Inversion with of?

Could the prepositional verb "of" be used with inversion? As so: " Of the apple there was nothing left, for the worm had found it's way inside and it could only be thrown away." Is the emboldened ...
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2answers
5k views

Starting a sentence with “WHERE” [closed]

I wonder if it's grammatically or stylistically correct to start a sentence with "Where" e.g. Where the wardrobe is, there is no dust" It sounds a bit weird to my ear but I don't know exactly why....
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1answer
405 views

Is this sentence with “though” correct?

In this sentence, is "Understand it though I do" grammatically correct? Understand it though I do, the logic of such a conception I could not explain even if I tried to. If so, in what ways can ...
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1answer
260 views

“No sooner do I sit…” Why does this have “do I” when it's not a question? [duplicate]

I have no idea what kind of grammar this is. No sooner do I sit at the foot of my bed than one of the beginning trainees comes to the door. How can they use do I in that sentence and still not ...
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1answer
8k views

Inversion after 'Only When'

I've learned it is obligatory to invert subject and verb when 'only when' is placed at the beginning of a sentence. However, I've recently found the sentence below. "Only when the rule can have some ...
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1answer
799 views

“Only until” requires subject inversion?

Is this sentence correct? It also may explain why only until the economics was relaxed after a difficult period, the policies to solve EVD crisis could attempt to get openly involved in the ...
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1answer
123 views

Is this a correct way to use hyperbaton?

Soon this man found himself in the clutches of an evil witch. Mean, full of hatred hell-bent she was on finding and killing him no matter the cost. Does the latter part of the sentence above make ...
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1answer
1k views

Inversion - Sentence starting with rarely

This is from my English Cambridge Proficiency Book. In Unit 8 about inversions, I had to rewrite the sentence: Original sentence: It is very difficult for town centre redevelopment to achieve a ...
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1answer
508 views

sentence structure: Why is the subject placed in the end of this sentence?

While I was reading a Barron's book, I saw this sentence. Its structure is not as what I always knew, but it seemed much more beautiful to me. "Along with the rise of agricultural societies came ...
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1answer
2k views

Figures of Speech: Inversion, doubt

This is a doubt from the poem Television by Roald Dahl and it is there in our 10 STD school textbook. I and my teacher had a bit of conflict with the figures of speech here: ...In almost every house ...
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1answer
95 views

Something/Someone is (not) there

My (Italian) students tend to produce sentences like: When I arrived, there weren't my parents (as opposed to 'my parents were not there') I cannot think of a grammar rule to provide an explanation. ...
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3answers
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Inversion or fronting with “so”

Sentences such as: So says the preacher. So began the fight. Are they an example of inversion? I searched around, but all I could find was that the inversions with so can happen with only ...
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1answer
866 views

What is the term for a phrase like “school it is”?

I heard this kind of expression in conversation: 1) A.- You should go to school and learn. B.- All right, school it is. 2) A.- Open the window unless there is better idea. B.- (no ...
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4answers
618 views

Quick subject question [duplicate]

Sorry for the dumb question, but can someone please explain the subject and verb in this sentence? "There is a house in new orleans whose veranda is lined with satin"
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2answers
109 views

Usage of “you should”

I found this message at a game. Players should know that Klei is not able to help you should issues arise while using mods. What is this you should ? I can understand it with replacing should to ...
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1answer
965 views

3rd conditional + inversion [duplicate]

So I know that the following sentence is correct: "Had I known about that, I wouldn't have talked to her." However is this one correct too? "I wouldn't have talked to her had I known about that." ...
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2answers
309 views

Why was the subject and verb inverted in a declarative sentence?

Preface: I ask only about the syntax and not semantics; I comprehend the meaning behind the following quote (for a paraphrase in 20C English; see p 27 of 35), but I am inexperienced with Early Modern ...
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3answers
606 views

Subjunctive Mood in Second Conditional - Inversion

The sentence If I were you, I wouldn't do this One can add emphasis to the sentence, by saying Were I you, I wouldn't do this However, I noticed that in everyday English people tend not to ...
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3answers
324 views

Verb inversion with possessive pronoun + interrogative

Is it yours? vs It is yours? Can #2 ever be appropriate? Does it exist to facilitate placing emphasis on the personal pronoun?