In that folder


Senior Member

I have a question concerning the word order. Can I put in that folder at the beginning of a sentence for example: In that folder are my documents. Or should I rather rephrase it? It sounds pretty wierd for me but my ears are Polish:) Can I ask for an opinion of some English ears?

Thanks in advance.
  • Cenzontle

    Senior Member
    English, U.S.
    I think it's a matter of "theme and rheme" or "topic and comment".
    There is a tendency to mention old, familiar information first, and new information last.
    If a question about your documents arises, then they become the theme, the familiar thing in the conversation.
    Then, when you introduce the folder as a new concept, that's the "rheme", or comment on the topic. So you'd say "My documents are in that folder."
    But if the folder is mentioned first (suppose someone asks "Why are you concerned about that folder?"), and you introduce your documents as new information, then
    "Because in that folder are my documents."
    This is the kind of situation that would justify the stylistic (not required) inversion of the normal order.
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