The optimism of such lyrics as “Tyrant Man shall be o’erthrown” and “Riches more than mind can picture” galvanizes the animals’ agitation.

Are the words in bold reversed in sequence? Are they actually meant to be lyrics such as? If it is so, please explain why it is in such sequence; and if not, please explain too, on how I should interpret the sentence.

  • Don't feel you need to apologize. 'Basic' questions are very often the hardest to understand -- and to explain! Welcome to ELL! Commented Aug 8, 2015 at 15:40

1 Answer 1


Because men is a much more common plural noun than lyrics, I'll use that in my usage chart...


There's nothing grammatically wrong with splitting the element such as by putting the relevant noun (lyrics, here) in between the two words. But even native speakers tend to find it a little bit awkward, so we don't usually do it nowadays, as you can see. Consequently, it sounds somewhat dated/formal.

  • @SallySNSD Note, however, that such can also act as a determiner, referring without as to something which has already been defined, and in this case it must sit before the noun. "Consider these examples . . . Such uses are common in English", NOT "*uses such are common". Commented Aug 8, 2015 at 16:49
  • I didn't recognize the cited lyrics fragments you cited, but I now realize they from Animal Farm. The text itself is 70 years old, but note that even then the words would have been dated / poetic / ceremonial. Also note that in ordinary spoken contexts today, people are much more likely to talk about lyrics like this, rather than lyrics such as this. Though arguably there's sometimes a slight difference in nuance, since the like version doesn't necessarily include whatever "like this" refers to. Commented Aug 8, 2015 at 17:00
  • Okay I understand! Thank you for being so careful and patient with me! Thanks a million!
    – Sally
    Commented Aug 8, 2015 at 17:26

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