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As far as I know, I can use an inversion to omit "if" in if-clause of conditional.

But is it possible to do an inversion in resulting clause of conditional sentence?

Normal conditional:

[1] If I had not been there, I would not have met her.

With inversion in resulting clause:

[2] If I had not been there, never would I have met her.

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    Yes, if the apodosis is a clause introduced by preposed "never", then inversion occurs.
    – BillJ
    Jan 30, 2017 at 9:23
  • @BillJ Thanks. Can you, please, elaborate a bit more? When and why is it used? Is there any (semantic) difference between an inversion in if-clause and resulting one?
    – DimanNe
    Jan 30, 2017 at 9:38
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    Under certain conditions, it is possible for the protasis to take the form of a content clause with subject-auxiliary inversion, for example: If I had known about this ... ~ Had I known about this .... This is found mainly with had and were. There is no difference in meaning between the two.
    – BillJ
    Jan 30, 2017 at 9:53
  • @BillJ To be honest, I do not understand why you gave me an example of inversion in protasis (if-clause). My question was about inversion in apodosis (resulting clause).
    – DimanNe
    Jan 30, 2017 at 10:55
  • You asked about "an inversion in if-clause" in your first message to me.
    – BillJ
    Jan 30, 2017 at 10:58

2 Answers 2

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This is nothing to do with a conditional. As I recently replied in another question, some emphatic negatives and negative-polarity items can come first in a clause, pushing the subject after the verb. "Never would I ... " is quite a common construction, particularly in a literary context, and irrespective of whether there is a conditional before it.

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  • Quite so, but the OP's concern was specifically about whether inversion was possible in the apodosis of a conditional. Obvious answer, I know, but we are dealing with learners who don't know all the rules of grammar.
    – BillJ
    Jan 30, 2017 at 14:20
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Yes, you can. But in this way: If I had not been there, never would have I met her.

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    Sorry, but that's wrong. It can only be "never would I have met her".
    – BillJ
    Jan 30, 2017 at 9:24
  • @BillJ: No, it is not wrong. Although it is very unusual and somewhat archaic.
    – Chenmunka
    Jan 30, 2017 at 10:08
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    @Chenmunka It is wrong.We're talking here about Standard English grammar where it most certainly would be ungrammatical. Your comment is not helpful.
    – BillJ
    Jan 30, 2017 at 10:12
  • user48367 Please correct the error in your answer. never would I have met her.
    – BillJ
    Jan 30, 2017 at 10:38
  • @Chenmunka and others, can anyone tell me where I can read more about this "very unusual and somewhat archaic" way of using English? What piece of grammar is it?
    – DimanNe
    Jan 30, 2017 at 10:41

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