A typical sentence of this form is: link 1 link 2

1 So memorable was the event that we could not miss it.

Can we extend and generalize this structure like these?

For example:

adverb + adverb + inversion:

2 Very well have you done your work that I cannot help but admire you.

adverb + adjective + inversion:

3 Extremely heavy was the obstacle that we could not move it.

A + adverb + adjective + noun + inversion:

4 A very attractive movie was it that I could not but buy it.

How if we don't follow the inversion with an other clause:

5 So confusing was the question.

Can we use less extreme and emphatic adverbs and adjectives like "slightly":

6 Korea's production was 400 billion kWh, and slightly lower was its consumption.

1 Answer 1


The construction that you're asking about is usually limited to "so" and "such". For example:

The room was such a mess that we spent all day cleaning it.

As with your example #1, the predicative expression can be fronted for emphasis:

Such a mess was the room that we spent all day cleaning it.

Because they don't use "so" or "such", your examples 2, 3, and 4 are incorrect.

Your example #5 sounds incomplete because we normally expect "that . . ." to follow:

So confusing was the question that no one answered it correctly.

In informal contexts, it is common to omit the subordinate clause. However, in that case we'd normally use standard word order and emphasize "so":

The question was so confusing!

The nonstandard word order in example #6 makes it sound awkward. We would normally write:

Korea's production was 400 billion kWh, and its consumption was slightly lower.

By the way, if you search this site you will find other discussions of this construction, such as so...that / to the extent that / such that do they all interchangeable? and "such that" & "such as to", "so...that" &"so...as to", "such...that" &"such ...as to".

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