infinitive + conjugated verb - eg. Sent he surely did

Hi,
In Polish there's this expression which we use in certain situations. For example, one person asks another one whether the letter has been sent (the letter is supposed to be sent by a third party). Now, if we don't know whether the third party sent it, but we suppose that they did, we can use a verb in the infinitive followed by a conjugated verb, possibly with an adverb in between. I was wondering how one could convey this in English. The closest equivalent I can think of is (with context):

- Hi, do you know if Mark has sent the letter?
- Sent he surely did/Sent he must have done (?), but I'm not 100% positive.
- OK, thank you. Let me know when it arrives.


Now, does the text in bold make any sense in this context? Is this expression even grammatically correct?
 
Last edited:
  • Copyright

    Senior Member
    American English
    - Hi, do you know if Mark has sent the letter?
    - Surely he must have -- but I'm not 100% positive. I'll double-check.
    - OK, thank you. Let me know when it arrives.

    Putting the verb first sounds a little ancient. :) You don't even need it since it's in response to the verb "sent," although you can repeat it if you like: Surely he must have sent it...
     

    panjandrum

    Lapsed Moderator
    English-Ireland (top end)
    The bold forms are not correct, but with a small change they could be - though not natural English.
    Send it he surely did. (He surely did send it.)
    Sent it he must have done. (He must have sent it.)

    The second is a lot more strange-sounding.

    You may find this thread interesting: Does Yoda speak correctly?
     
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