Inversion when pronoun is the subject

huynhvantinhftu

Senior Member
Vietnamese
I have read the sentence (1) about inversion when there is an adverb of place at beginning position
(1) By his side sat his faithful dog.
But I wonder if the inversion work when subject is a pronoun
(2) By his side sat she. = (3) She sat by his side.

I hope to receive your advice.
Many thanks for your time and help.
 
  • entangledbank

    Senior Member
    English - South-East England
    No, because this kind of inversion is only used to introduce things: they usually begin with the article 'a' (By his side sat a black and white dog), though your sentence introduces his dog as new. A pronoun refers to something already known, so is not suitable here.
     

    SevenDays

    Senior Member
    Spanish
    I have read the sentence (1) about inversion when there is an adverb of place at beginning position
    (1) By his side sat his faithful dog.
    But I wonder if the inversion work when subject is a pronoun
    (2) By his side sat she. = (3) She sat by his side.

    I hope to receive your advice.
    Many thanks for your time and help.
    That's the idea, but (2) is unusual; I might expect to see it in a poem, but not in everyday speech. In addition to what's been said (that pronouns refer to something already known), I'd add that personal pronouns tend to appear first in narratives, the type of narrative that you have in (2). The inversion that you have in (2) becomes more likely if you have a "name" instead of a pronoun (By his side sat Mary), but I'll let natives confirm or correct that.
     

    PaulQ

    Banned
    UK
    English - England
    A pronoun refers to something already known
    or qualified so as to create a noun phrase:
    (2) By his side sat she who was to be Queen.
    But
    (2a) By his side sat it which would be his downfall. :cross:
    (2b) By his side sat that which would be his downfall. :tick: (There's a reason "that" works, but I can't bring it to mind - it is something to with that being demonstrative...)
     
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