As far as I know, words following both parts of this conjunction (not only and but also) should belong to the same parts of speech. For example, if a verb follows "not only" , then a verb should also follow "but also" .

1- The car not only is economical but also feels good to drive.

After I have seen this sentence, I am wondering that do I have to use same verb form in both parts of this conjuction. For example: If I use a verb in past simple form after "not only", does that mean do I have to use another verb in past simple after "but also" ?

2- She not only sued him, but also wants money from him.

3- He not only has won the last Eisner, but he is also working for another.

Are these examples grammatically wrong?

1 Answer 1


It depends on the construction of the sentence.

For instance:

1. The car is not only economical but also good to drive.

In this version, no verb follows the but. This is possible because the verb is precedes not only. By parallel construction and elision, it applies to both parts of the sentence:

1. The car is not only economical but also is good to drive.

You don't need to provide the second instance of is since it's implicitly understood to be there.

However, if you don't actually want to imply is good, but actually want to say that it feels good, then you would still need to provide the second verb.

In your second sentence, there is no way of not providing a second verb because the following, although grammatical, would make no sense:

? 2. She sued not only him but also sued his money.

So, if you move not only in front of the first verb, and the second verb you want to use is the same as the first verb, then you don't need to repeat it; otherwise, you do need a second verb.

Further note that you do not need also. It can be omitted in all of your sentences. The only part of the construction that's necessary is not only . . . but.

  • Thanks, ıs my third sentence okay? Commented May 13, 2019 at 14:15
  • @TalhaÖzden It's the same as the second sentence—in terms of the two verbs, it's also not one where I would omit the second one, simply because that would change the meaning of the sentence. (Although I might simplify it by removing some words—and making another slight edit: He not only won the last Eisner, but is working toward another.) Commented May 13, 2019 at 14:22

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