We often do this when we want to introduce a new topic, to give a reason, instruction or explanation, or to correct something that has been said or done.

What I want you to do is your math homework.

What made me happy was when we played cards together.

What made me happy was when we played cards together.

It is possible to replace What by The thing that .

The thing that made me happy was when we played cards together.

To emphasise an action performed by someone, we use a sentence with what ... do

To emphasise an action performed by someone, we use a sentence with what ... do

We didn't buy a new car. What we did was (to) repair our car.

Using structures to emphasize a point
→ I Focusing what clause

Negative adverbials can be used at the beginning of a clause to emphasize information. The subject and verb are inverted just like in questions.

Here are some adverbials you can use in such a structure:

rarely, barely, seldom, no sooner...than, hardly, when/before,
e.t.c.

Barely had he started to eat when the phone rang again.

No sooner had Peter got home than he had to leave again.

No sooner had Peter got home than he had to leave again.

Using structures to emphasize a point
→ II Inversion

Not only is she poor, but she is ill too/as well.

Not only did he ruin my helmet, but he broke my motorbike too.

Not only did he ruin my helmet, but he broke my motorbike too.

Using structures to emphasize a point
→ III Not only

how to use structures to emphasize a point when debating.

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