General Writing and Grammar Help/Only after

Advertisement


Question
Dear Ted:

Which of the following sentences is correct and natural?

1) Only after you have finished your homework can you play.

2) Only after you have finished your homework you can play.

Also, would you please give me some other examples of sentences beginning with "only after"?

Many, many thanks for your kind help.

Paolo

Answer
Dear Paolo:

Which of the following sentences is correct and natural?

1) Only after you have finished your homework can you play.

2) Only after you have finished your homework you can play.

*** The first sentence is correct.  The wording of the second is troubling.  You would have
to change the second sentence to this:  You can play only after you have finished your homework.

*** I know this seems odd, but sometimes the word order in a sentence is very important.

Also, would you please give me some other examples of sentences beginning with "only after"?

1.  Only after the catastrophic defeat of the Confederate troops did the "War between the States" come to an end.

2.  Only after the ballots were counted three times was James declared the winner.

3.  Only after the roasted chicken has been allowed to "rest" for a few minutes should it be carved and served.

Ted  

General Writing and Grammar Help

All Answers


Answers by Expert:


Ask Experts

Volunteer


Ted Nesbitt

Expertise

I am the bibliographic instruction and reference librarian at a public college. Some members of the English department recommend me to their students. I offer assistance in grammar, punctuation, sentence structure, and paragraph development. My master`s thesis concerns William Faulkner`s tragic novels. I formerly taught advanced placement English at two schools in the Philadelphia area.

Experience

I have been one of the highest-ranked volunteers in this category for more than a decade.

Education/Credentials
B. A. and M. A in English; MSIS in Library & Information Sciences; graduate study in philosophy

©2016 About.com. All rights reserved.