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I read the sentence below and the "demands collected from..." makes me stop for a while and think that if I had been written this sentence I will probably be using "collected demands from".

This document is a register of the demands collected from Field team.

This document is a register of the collected demands from Field team.

So, both alternatives are correct? Is there any relevant difference?

How this inversion is called, so I can search and learn more about it?

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    It doesn't look to me as if it was written by a native speaker - how do you 'collect demands'? However, the original sentence is better grammatically. Imagine that it reads [which were] collected. Nov 28, 2021 at 14:54
  • There's no inversion. "The demands collected ..." and "the collected demands" are both noun phrases. In the former, the head noun is "demands", which is post-modified by the past-participial clause "collected from Field team". In the less likely latter alternant, the head noun is again "demands", which this time has the verb "collected" as pre-head modifier.
    – BillJ
    Nov 28, 2021 at 15:04
  • Cf. I'm buying a house painted with a paint roller and I'm buying a painted house with a paint roller. Nov 28, 2021 at 15:08
  • Are you clear now that there's no inversion because "the demands collected" and "the collected demands" are not clauses, but noun phrases?
    – BillJ
    Nov 28, 2021 at 18:17
  • @BillJ I agreed with you, they are not clauses. I realized that the noun phrases are both valid but they have a subtle difference.
    – dgolive
    Nov 28, 2021 at 18:19

1 Answer 1

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This is nothing to do with inversion, verbs, or subjects. It is about adjectival phrases.

First, in case you are unclear, demands is a (plural) noun in this sentence.

Normally, an adjective (including a participle used adjectivally) precedes its head noun in English:

collected demands

But when the modifier is not a simple adjective, but a phrase consisting of an adjective with some sort of complement, the phrase often follows the head noun:

demands [collected from the field team]

(In this construction, the adjective is most often a participle, but not always, eg a parcel ready to go.)

So in your example, the normal order is

demands collected from the field team.

Your alternative is grammatical, but has a different structure, and possibly a different meaning:

[collected demands] [from the field team].

It is not specifying that the demands have been collected from the field team, but that the demands have been collected, and that they are from the field team. This might be the same, but it might not. When collected is used a simple adjective like that, it tends to have the meaning of "collected together, eg by an editor, for publication or study", rather than its basic meaning of "brought together".

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  • Now I realized that there is a subtle difference, as @kate-bunting pointed as well, in the first sentence the field team is the source of the demands while in the second sentence the demands came from the field team in some way but could not be directly related to them. Thanks Colin and everyone :)
    – dgolive
    Nov 28, 2021 at 18:09

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