Inversion is a changed order of the subject and the verb in a sentence. There are at least seventeen types of inversion. Neg intro – after negative and restrictive adverbs: Rarely have I seen such a beautiful butterfly. rarely, seldom, never, little, hardly, scarcely, barely, no Seldom have we fished so much here. sooner, not until, not once, only, not only, at no time, Never have I heard such a stupid thing. under/in no circumstances, in no way, on no account, etc. Little did she know how much work was left. When a sentence contains a negative or restrictive word or expression it is sometimes placed at the beginning in Hardly/Scarcely/Barely had we started to watch the film when the light went off. formal English to give a more dramatic effect and then inversion is required. No sooner had I taken this medicine than I felt much Observe that words or expressions like never, rarely and better. seldom are considered negative in English. Not until the next morning did she realise how serious Hardly (the most usual), scarcely and barely go with the it was. Past Perfect Tense. No sooner may also be used with other tenses, but never for actions that will take place in Not once did she offer us her help. the future. You cannot therefore say: Only then did I understand the problem. × No sooner do I see her, I will invite her to my birthday Not only did they take care of me, but they also party. treated me as if I were their own daughter. Note that it is not always the first verb that is inverted: Not until I got home did I realise that my shoes were At no time did she tell me who she was. untied. Under/In no circumstances should anyone enter this Only after he arrived at the airport did he look for his room. passport. The sentence with inversion sounds more formal or more In no way are they responsible for what occurred last night. literary and sentences like this are less common in ordinary conversation. On no account should you take these pills. Now is your chance to speak out. Intro adverbial - after adverbs and adverb phrases that usually show location and direction: now, first, then, First comes love, then comes marriage. after, next, down, up, below, off, on, into, etc. After A comes B, then comes C, next comes D. This type of inversion usually only occurs with be- verbs, Down came the rain and washed the spider out. linking verbs and verbs that show direction or movement, Up goes Peter again. (But Up he goes again) like come, go, run, etc. The inverted sentences give an emphatic effect, but they Below me lay/was the beautiful scenery had been told about. mean the same as the non-inverted ones. Off went my brother without saying a word. Note that we do not use do, does or did with this type of inversion. Along the corridor were her toys. On a hill stands a castle. Into the room ran the lady. Intro Past Participle – after past participles Blessed are the children who are still unaware of what the future holds. or participle phrases. Gone are the days when I could have been happy. This type of inversion usually occurs with be-verbs, but sometimes with linking verbs. Lost among the old tables and chairs was the priceless Victorian desk. Note that the phrase is the complement of the be-verb. Comparatives – after structures of a Cheetahs run faster than do antelopes. comparative completed by than. You speak English better than do I. This type of inversion is used with all verbs. We normally only have inversion here if we are Jessica is more interested in Computer Science than comparing subjects of the verb, not objects. For example: is Benjamin. I like carrots more than I do potatoes. I like carrots more than do I like potatoes. I like carrots more than does my friend Carl. Intro comparative – after comparative Bigger than apatosaurus is the blue whale. adjectives completed by than. More important than your personal statement is We can only use this type of inversion when the verb is your GPA. a be-verb and the comparative is the complement of the be-verb. No less impressive than the invention of than laser was the development of the wheel. As – after the subordinating conjunction as when it Ann is from Canada, as is Paul. indicates the similarity between two things. Marry wants to leave early today, as does Hayley. This type of inversion is used with all verbs. We can only use inversion if we are using as for If thrown into the water, camels can swim, as can comparison. cats. So /So much/Such ….that… - after adjective So happy was I that I bought flowers for everybody in the class. and adverbial phrases starting with so, so much, such This type of inversion is usually used with a be-verb but So quickly did he run that the others couldn’t catch sometimes so + adjective/so much can be combined with up with him. all verbs. So much did she adore John that she would not Note that so is followed by an adjective and such can be give him up. replaced by “so/great”. Such was their excitement that they began to jump up and down. /So great was their excitement that they began to jump up and down. Had, should, were for if-clauses - in Had we known what the weather would be like, we conditional clauses after had, should, were when if is wouldn’t have come. dropped. Should you need a hand, I will be happy to help This type of inversion is used with all verbs and inverted you. sentences sound more formal. Note that we can only use this type of inversion when we Were I you, I would try to fascinate her. are using an if-clause: even though the word if is omitted, Were I to divorce, I would marry again. we still have the meaning of an if-clause. Were is also used for I, he, she, it. There is, there are, there exists, there There is a good restaurant nearby. comes, etc. There are lots of questions in the test. Most people remember there is and there are. But we should also remember that there are other verbs that we There comes a time in every man’s life when he has can use instead of is and are. The most common ones are to make a choice. exist, come and go. There exists no honour among thieves. Here is, here are, here comes, here Here is some good food for you to try. come. Here are the books I don’t need anymore. Here comes the bus! Here come the brides! Inro Present Participle – after past participles Burning out of control was the forest located in the or participle phrases. foothills of Sierra Nevada Mountains. This type of inversion usually occurs with be-verbs. Not helping the situation was little Susie, who was Note that the phrase is the complement of the be-verb. throwing a newspaper on the spreading fire. Boy am I hungry! Emphasis, exclamation, making wishes Bitterly did he rue it! This type of inversion is used with all verbs. Do you know how to cook! Isn’t it a lovely day! May you both live happily ever after! The…the - in “the + comparative.., the The closer an object is to another object, the greater is the gravity between the two objects. +comparative…” constructions. This type of inversion is used with all verbs. So, nor, neither I am from Ukraine. So am I. Inversion is common when using these words to I don’t like monsters. Neither/Nor (less formal) do I. (But I don’t either). expression agreement or disagreement. This type of inversion is used with all verbs. He only buys food at the market, and so does she. They don’t eat meat, and neither/nor do I. Questions Is this the last example? This type of inversion is used with all verbs. Do you enjoy reading this list/ Have you finished yet? ”Story speech” “I think it’s time to go,” said Susan. This type of inversion is used with verbs that report “It’s time for you, but not for me,” replied Gary. speech. Beautiful beyond belief was my baby daughter. Inro adjective – after adjective phrases. This type of inversion is quite rare and is used only with Happy about the acceptance into their dream be-verbs. schools were Lany and Tom.