Parents not only gives us love but also protection against any danger.

Why does the author use unbalanced structure between "not only----but also"? Can I change this sentence into

Parents not only give us love but also give us protection against any danger?

Would my sentence have different in meaning with the given sentence?

  • Yes, I also believe the aurhor's sentence isn't a good one since parallel structures were ignored while writing it. He wanted to avoid the repetition of give us but didn't do a good job on that. I think the last two sentences provided by Max are examples of graceful writing. Although nowadays with this creative writing and stuff, things get much more related to one's style. ;) maybe the author wanted to put more emphasis on love by avoiding wording around it.
    – Yuri
    Oct 5, 2016 at 8:20

1 Answer 1


I can't answer why the author did that; I can't read minds. But I can say that the author's sentence makes sense. So that might be why the faulty usage is made and overlooked.

You are right to be suspicious. Proper usage of the correlative conjunction not only... but (also) requires parallelism.

  1. Parents not only give us love but also give us protection against any danger. (OP)
  2. Parents not only give us love but also protect us against danger.
  3. Parents give us not only love but also protection.

Yes, your example is equivalent in meaning to the author's sentence.

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