Inversion

Figures of speech are literary devices which are used to convey ideas that go beyond their literal meaning.

In English, there are more than 200 different types of figures of speech. Inversion is one of them.

Inversion

Inversion Meaning


Inversion is a figure of speech where the order of the words in the sentence is jumbled for poetic effect. Through inversion, the writer uses poetic liberty to make the sentence sound more pleasing. The author may occasionally use inversion to make a line rhyme with the previous one.

The sun shines and the birds’ tweet,
Sing the womenfolk their songs sweet.

  • Powerful you have become; the dark side I sense in you. (The order of the sentence has been changed. The correct order is ‘You have become powerful; I sense the dark side in you.’)
  • Through vales and dales, blows gently the wind. (The correct order of the sentence is ‘Through vales and dales, the wind blows gently.’)

Inversion Examples


“There was a ship,” quoth he.
—Samuel Taylor Coleridge, The Rime of the Ancient Mariner

“This is the forest primaeval. The murmuring pines and the hemlocks”
—Henry Wadsworth Longfellow, Evangeline

“How many pictures of one Nymph we view, All how unlike each other, all how true!”
Alexander Pope, Epistle to a Lady


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