Blog

Place the word ” ONLY” anywhere on the sentence…

She told he me that she loved him.

Here are the different ways the meaning of that sentence can change—depending on where we place “only”:

1. ONLY she told him that she loved him. = No one else told him that she loved him.

2. She ONLY told him that she loved him. = She did nothing else but tell him that she loved him. ⚠️ Alternate translation: She didn’t yell or scream; she merely told him.

3. She told ONLY him that she loved him. = She told no one else but him that she loved him.

4. She told him ONLY that she loved him. =  She didn’t tell him anything else; she said that she loved him and didn’t say anything else. ⚠️ Alternate translation: She told no one else but him that she loved him.

5. She told him that ONLY she loved him. = She said that she was the only person who loved him.

6. She told him that she ONLY loved him. = She said that she didn’t do anything else in life except love him. ⚠️ Alternate translation: She said that she merely loved him but wouldn’t do more than that, e.g., she wouldn’t die for him or marry him.

7. She told him that she loved ONLY him. = She said that she loved no one else except him.

8. She told him that she loved him ONLY. = She said that she loved no one else except him.

Whew! 😅

This “English Game” illustrates the importance of placing words in the proper place. Otherwise, your readers/listeners can easily misunderstand you.

3 thoughts on “Place the word ” ONLY” anywhere on the sentence…

    1. Agree. Should be: She told him nothing else but that she loved him.

      It’s an example but the sentence itself is not very practical.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *