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Chapter 29. Language Usage and Style > Subject-Verb Inversion

Subject-Verb Inversion

Normally, a sentence contains a subject and then a verb in that order. This pattern is disturbed only in a few instances. Here are a few examples:

  • In questions—"Have you read that book?"

  • In expletive constructions—"Here is your book."

  • To put focus on a particular word—"What's more important is his reluctance to find a job."

  • When a sentence begins with an adverb, adverbial phrase, or clause— "Rarely have so many been eaten in just one meal."

  • After the word "so"—"I believe him; so do the people."


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