Grammar Term
(click here to see term archive)


die Inversion

Textbooks and courses often use inversion to talk about a seeming position switch of subject and verb.
here’s an example:


  • Ich habe heute eine Pizza gegessen. (I ate a pizza today.)
  • Heute habe ich eine Pizza gegessen.

The second sentence has “inversion” in it.

However, this has NOTHING to do with how German actually works. The fact of the matter is that the verb doesn’t move at all. It is in position number two in both sentences. The other elements just change slots around it.
So if anything inverted here, it was heute and ich.

Also, the subject does by no means always come right after the verb.


  • Heute hat mich zu meiner Überraschung Maria angerufen.
  • Today, to my surprise, Maria called me.

Where exactly is the “inversion” now, you dumb textbooks?
That’s right… there is none, because inversion isn’t really a thing in German.
Feel free to challenge your teacher with this, if you want to stirr up some trouble ;).

0 0 votes
Article Rating

Your thoughts and impressions

Notify of

Inline Feedbacks
View all comments

Never miss out!

Join over 20.000 German learners and get my epic newsletter whenever I post a new article :)

We don’t spam! Read our privacy policy for more info.