Results 1 to 6 of 6
  1. #1
    wotcha's Avatar
    wotcha is offline Senior Member
    • Member Info
      • Member Type:
      • English Teacher
      • Native Language:
      • Korean
      • Home Country:
      • South Korea
      • Current Location:
      • South Korea
    Join Date
    Jun 2010
    Posts
    735
    Post Thanks / Like

    Default Only about 459 years ago was sugar added to create the kind of chocolate we know

    "Only about 459 years ago was sugar added to create the kind of chocolate we know and love today."

    Is the above sentence grammatically correct? If then, the original sentence before the inversion is

    "Sugar was added to create the kind of chocolate we know and love today only about 450 years ago"?



    Thank you.

  2. #2
    SoothingDave is offline VIP Member
    • Member Info
      • Member Type:
      • Interested in Language
      • Native Language:
      • American English
      • Home Country:
      • United States
      • Current Location:
      • United States
    Join Date
    Apr 2009
    Posts
    9,821
    Post Thanks / Like

    Default Re: Only about 459 years ago was sugar added to create the kind of chocolate we know

    I'm not sure if logically "450 years ago" can be "only," but it's OK grammatically.

  3. #3
    Raymott's Avatar
    Raymott is offline VIP Member
    • Member Info
      • Member Type:
      • Academic
      • Native Language:
      • English
      • Home Country:
      • Australia
      • Current Location:
      • Australia
    Join Date
    Jun 2008
    Posts
    19,759
    Post Thanks / Like

    Default Re: Only about 459 years ago was sugar added to create the kind of chocolate we know

    Quote Originally Posted by SoothingDave View Post
    I'm not sure if logically "450 years ago" can be "only," but it's OK grammatically.
    "Only" would be appropriate if the previous sentence said something like, "Chocolate has been around since prehistoric times."

  4. #4
    philo2009 is offline Key Member
    • Member Info
      • Member Type:
      • Academic
      • Native Language:
      • British English
      • Home Country:
      • UK
      • Current Location:
      • Japan
    Join Date
    Jan 2009
    Posts
    1,507
    Post Thanks / Like

    Default Re: Only about 459 years ago was sugar added to create the kind of chocolate we know

    A negative or restrictive adverbial (the latter including one beginning 'only') at the beginning of a sentence tends to occasion interrogative word order in the verb phrase, e.g.

    Not only did he catch the ball but he did so almost without moving.

    (Cf. Formal/literary sentences beginning with certain locative adverbials, which occasion full subject-verb inversion, e.g.

    Down the hill rolled the gingerbread man. )

  5. #5
    wotcha's Avatar
    wotcha is offline Senior Member
    • Member Info
      • Member Type:
      • English Teacher
      • Native Language:
      • Korean
      • Home Country:
      • South Korea
      • Current Location:
      • South Korea
    Join Date
    Jun 2010
    Posts
    735
    Post Thanks / Like

    Default Re: Only about 459 years ago was sugar added to create the kind of chocolate we know

    If so,

    "Only about 459 years ago sugar was added to create the kind of chocolate we know and love today." is grammatically incorrect?

    The inversion has to happen "ALWAYS" when a restrictive adverbial phrase is at the beginning of a sentence?

    Then, what about

    "Only about 459 years ago, sugar was added to create the kind of chocolate we know and love today."?


    Appreciate.

  6. #6
    philo2009 is offline Key Member
    • Member Info
      • Member Type:
      • Academic
      • Native Language:
      • British English
      • Home Country:
      • UK
      • Current Location:
      • Japan
    Join Date
    Jan 2009
    Posts
    1,507
    Post Thanks / Like

    Default Re: Only about 459 years ago was sugar added to create the kind of chocolate we know

    No, in the case of restrictives, it is common but not obligatory. In the case of negative adverbials, however, it is generally obligatory.

Similar Threads

  1. not since 5 years ago
    By ostap77 in forum Ask a Teacher
    Replies: 2
    Last Post: 15-Oct-2010, 09:00
  2. was some years ago with
    By navi tasan in forum Ask a Teacher
    Replies: 1
    Last Post: 08-Feb-2009, 00:25
  3. 5 - years ago vs years back
    By FirstScript in forum Ask a Teacher
    Replies: 2
    Last Post: 10-Mar-2008, 08:48
  4. Replies: 4
    Last Post: 26-Jan-2008, 04:04
  5. since 2 years ago?
    By aikilychee in forum Ask a Teacher
    Replies: 4
    Last Post: 10-Nov-2004, 11:48

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •