Inversion, Detachment, Parenthesis. 

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Inversion, Detachment, Parenthesis.

Inversion – any deviation from a fixed word-order in a sentence. Traditional word-order (Subject – Predicate – Object) has developed a definite intonation design. Grammatical inversion changes the structural meaning of the sentence: “You are here. Are you here?”. Stylistic inversionaims at attaching logical stress or additional emotional coloring to the surface meaning of the utterance, emphasizing the meaning of the replaced element. I. should not be regarded as a violation of the norms of standard English, but as an expressive means of language having typical structural models.

Complete i. -displacement of the predicate; partial i.-displacement secondary members of the sentence.

Patterns of stylistic inversion:

1. The object is placed at the beginning of the sentence “Talent he has”

2. The attribute is placed after the word it modifies “With fingers weary and worn”

3. A)The predicative is placed before the subject “A good generous prayer it was”

4. B)The predicative stands before the link-verb and both are placed before the subject “Rude am I in my speech”

5. Both modifier and predicate stand before the subject “In went Mr. Pickwick”

Detachment (detached construction) – one of the secondary parts of the sentence by some specific consideration of the writer placed so that it seems formally independent of the word it logically refers to. The detached part assumes a greater degree of significance and is given prominence by intonation. The mark of punctuation plays a great role.

Structurally d. possesses all the features of a primary member; this SD is akin to inversion, the functions are almost the same, but d. c. produces a much stronger effect. “Daylight was dying, the moon rising, gold behind the poplars ”, “I want to go,” he said, miserable ”. “Shall be lifted – nevermore

D. c. as a SD is typification of the syntactical peculiarities of colloquial language. The structural patterns of d. c. haven’t yet been classified, but most noticeable cases – an attribute/adverbial modifier is placed not in immediate proximity to its referent, but in some other position. “Steyne rose up, grinding his teeth, pale, and with fury in his eyes ”.

Parenthesis – a variant of d. c., a qualifying, explanatory or appositive word, phrase, clause, sentence, or other sequence which interrupts a syntactic construction without affecting it, having often a characteristic intonationand indicated in writing by commas, brackets or dashes.

P. sometimes embodied a considerable volume of predicativeness, thus giving the utterance an additional nuance of meaning a tinge of emotional coloring.


49. Expressive means based on the absence of the logically required components: Ellipsis, Break-in-the narrative, nominative sentences, apokoinu constructions.

Ellipsis - deliberate omission of at least one member of the sentence. In contemporary prose ellipsis is mainly used in dialogue where it is consciously employed by the author to reflect the natural omissions characterizing oral colloquial speech. It is the situational nature of everyday speech which heavily relies on both speakers’ awareness of the conditions and details of the communication act that promotes normative colloquial omissions. Imitation of these oral colloquial norms is created by the author through ellipsis. The main function is achieving the authenticity, naturalness and plausibility of fictitious dialogue; addition of emotional colouring, it makes the sentence sound more empatic.

The most characteristic feature of the written variety of language is amplification which demands expansion of the ideas. E. doesn’t express what can easily be supplied by the situation (that’s why rarely used as SD). “Nothing so difficult as a beginning”, “..when at her door arouse a clatter might awake the dead”.

Break-in-the narrative – a sudden break in the narration; a stopping short for rhetorical effect. Break is used mainly in the, dialogue or in other forms of narrative imitating spontaneous oral speech. Functions:

1. It reflects the emotional or/and the psychological state of the speaker: a sentence may be broken because the speaker’s emotions prevent him from finishing it.

2. Show the desire to cut short the information with which the sentence began. In such cases there are usually special remarks by the author, indicating the intentional abruptness of the end.

3. In many cases break is the result of the speaker’s uncertainty as to what exactly he is to promise (to threaten, to beg). “You just come home or I’ll..”

A break can be caused by euphemistic considerations – unwillingness to name a thing of its being offensive to the ear. The role of Intonation implied can’t be overestimated-the pause after the break is generally charged with meaning, only the intonation’ll decode the communicative significance of the utterance. To mark the break, dashes and dots are used. It is only in cast-iron structures that full stops may also appear, as in the well-known phrases “Good intentions, but”, or “It depends”.

Nominative sentences - sentences consisting only of a nominal group, which is semantically and communicatively self-sufficient. Functions:

1. In creative prose one-member sentences are mostly used in descriptions (of nature, interior, appearance, etc.), where they produce the effect of a detailed but laconic picture foregrounding its main components; “London”

2. used as the background of dialogue, mentioning the emotions, attitudes, moods of the speakers.

3. Helps to create vivid object, appeals to the reader’s imagination. “Dust – of a summer night”

4. Adds brevity, dynamics

In apokoinu constructions the omission of the pronominal (adverbial) connective creates a blend of the main and the subordinate clauses so that the predicative or the object of the first one is simultaneously used as the subject of the second one. “There was a door led into the kitchen.” “He was the man killed that deer.” The double syntactical function played by one word produces the general impression of clumsiness of speech and is used as a means of speech characteristics in dialogue (emphasizes the irregular, careless/uneducated character of speech of personages), in reported speech and the type of narrative known as “entrusted” in which the author entrusts the telling of the story to an imaginary narrator who is either an observer or participant of the described events.


50. Expressive means based on the Redundancy of the components: Repetition (variety and functions), Framing, Anadiplosis. Syntactic tautology. Thematic net.

One of the most prominent places among the SDs dealing with the arrangement of members of the sentence belongs to repetition. As a syntactical SD repetition is recurrence of the same word, word combination, phrase for two and more times. “Scroodge went to bed again, and thought, and thought it over and over and over”. Functions:

a. intensify the utterance (aesthetic aim)

b. adds rhythm and balance to the utterance

c. show the state of mind of the speaker, he’s under the stress of strong emotion

d. aims at logical emphasis, fixes the reader’s attention on the key-word of the utterance.

e. Stress monotony of action, suggest fatigue, despair, doom

f. Express reiteration/frequentative action(repetition of words connected by conjunction and)

g. Express repetition/continuity of the action (such lexical units as on and on; over and over)

According to the place which the repeated unit occupies in a sentence r. is classified into several types:

1.  anaphora: the beginning of two or more successive sentences (clauses) is repeated —  a..., a..., a.... The main stylistic function is not so much to emphasize the repeated unit as to create the background non - repeated unit, which, through its novelty, becomes foregrounded. “Farewell to the mountains high covered with snow! Farewell to the straths and green valleys below!”

2.  epiphora: the end of successive sentences (clauses) is repeated - ...a,...a,...a. The main function is to add stress to the final words of the sentence. “I’m exactly the man to be placed in a superior position in such a case as that. I’m above the rest of mankind, in such a case as that.”

3. framing: the beginning of the sentence is repeated in the end, thus forming the “frame” for the non-repeated part of the sentence (utterance) —  a... a. “ Those kids were getting it all right, with busted heads and bleeding faces – those kids were getting it”. Functions:

· to elucidate the notion mentioned in the beginning of the sentence. Between two appearances of the repeated unit there comes the developing middle part of the sentence which explains and clarifies what was introduced in the beginning, so that by the time it is used for the second time its semantics is concretized and specified.

· Makes the utterance more complete, compact.

· Reflects persistent, irritating tone

4.  catch repetition (anadiplosis) - the end of one clause (sentence) is repeated in the beginning of the following one -... a, a.... Specification of the semantics occurs here too, but on a more modest level. “With Bewick on my knee, I was then happy: happy at least in my way”.

5.  chain repetition presents several successive anadiploses - ...a, a...b, b...c, c. The effect is that of the smoothly developing logical reasoning.

6.  ordinary repetition has no definite place in the sentence and the repeated unit occurs in various positions —  ...a,...a..., a... Ordinary repetition emphasizes both the logical and the emotional meanings of the reiterated word (phrase).

7.  successive repetition is a string of closely following each other reiterated units — ... a, a, a... This is the most emphatic type of repetition which signifies the peak of emotions of the speaker.

8. root-repetition “To live again in the youth of the young”

9. synonymic r. – r. of the same idea by using synonymous words and phrases which by adding a slightly different nuance of meaning intensify the impact of the utterance: “The poetry of earth is never dead.. The poetry of earth is ceasing never..”

Tautology – the repetition of the same word/phrase/idea/statement in other words; usually as a fault of style. “He was the only survivor; no one else was saved”. It can be accepted in oratory inasmuch as it helps the audience to grasp the meaning of the utterance.



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