When to use “not only, but also”
We use this structure to present two ideas that are of similar importance. It’s a great structure to use in the introductions or conclusions of your writings. Officially, using an inversion in this structure adds emphasis, but I recommend always using the inverted form because it will demonstrate a higher level of English.
The normal, more basic structure (without inversion)
In this course, we aren’t focusing on how to use “not only, but also” without inversions. So I shall simply leave some examples below for you to look at:
One common pattern we can see in these examples, is that the subject comes before the “not only”. When we look at the inversions now, you will notice that we are changing this structure and putting the subject after the “not only”.
Adding Inversions to “not only, but also”
Okay, we’ve arrived. It’s time to LEVEL UP YOUR ENGLISH!
To create an inversion in English, we normally change the position of the subject and auxiliary verb. So it’s first important to be able to recognize the auxiliary verb of the verb you are using.
Here is a quick guide:
|To be||“to be”, but conjugated|
You can study auxiliary verbs in more detail here.
Here’s the structure we are going to use for making inversions with “not only, but also”.
Not only + auxiliary verb + subject + verb, but also + rest of sentence.
A great way to think of this is:
Not only + question form, but also + rest of sentence
Let’s see some examples.
|Original Sentence||Sentence inverted|
|I not only eat pizza, but also pasta||Not only do I eat pizza, but also pasta|
|We not only went to the party, but we also went to the beach||Not only did we go to the party, but we also went to the beach|
|They are not only hungry, but they’re also tired||Not only are they hungry, but they’re also tired|
|I will not only study English, but I’ll also study French||Not only will I study English, but I’ll also study French|
|You would not only pass the exam, but you’d also get a new job||Not only would you pass the exam, but you’d also get a new job|
|I have not only been to France, but also to Greece||Not only have I been to France, but also to Greece|
|We had not only lived together, but we also shared a business||Not only had we lived together, but we also shared a business|
And that’s all, folks!
Head over to the next section so you can practise what you’ve learnt!