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Thread: lest/ should...

  1. #1
    vil is offline VIP Member
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    Default lest/ should...

    Dear teachers,

    Would you tell me your opinion concerning the usage of the conjunction “lest” in the following two sentences?

    Put down the rule lest you should forget it.

    Heat the stove lest it should be cold at night.

    Thank you for your efforts.

    Regards,

    V.

  2. #2
    Raymott's Avatar
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    Default Re: lest/ should...

    Quote Originally Posted by vil View Post
    Dear teachers,

    Would you tell me your opinion concerning the usage of the conjunction “lest” in the following two sentences?

    Put down the rule lest you should forget it.

    Heat the stove lest it should be cold at night.

    Thank you for your efforts.

    Regards,

    V.
    In the first sentence it means something like "as a prevention of the possibility that ..." This is the meaning in the "Lest we Forget" (our fallen soldiers), which is almost the only case the term is used any more.
    In the second sentence it means "in case".

  3. #3
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    Default Re: lest/ should...

    You do realize that this is not common in everyday speech? A mother does not say to her child to take an extra piece of fruit in his lunch lest he is hungry by early afternoon.
    Last edited by David L.; 24-Nov-2008 at 03:48.

  4. #4
    Raymott's Avatar
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    Default Re: lest/ should...

    Quote Originally Posted by David L. View Post
    You do realize that this is not common in everyday speech? A mother does not say to her child to take an extra piece of fruit in his lunch lest he is hungry by early afternoon.
    Yes, thanks, David. I do. Did you miss my line "which is almost the only case the term is used any more."

  5. #5
    vil is offline VIP Member
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    Default Re: lest/ should...

    Hi teachers,

    I know at least two meanings of the “unfortunate” and “unpopular” in your judgment word “lest”:

    lest = 1. in order that…not
    2. after fear that, in order to prevent

    I am astonished at your ludicrous animosity towards it.

    Would you be kind enough to tell me whether the following sentences are written in an understandable English in this way?

    He tiptoed lest the guard should hear her.

    He he ran away lest he should be seen.

    We were afraid lest he should get here too late.

    He cut the remark out of the final programme lest it should offend the listeners.

    "In the skies, Lord Jesus, cover up mine eyes Lest they should look on vanities."

    This hole is not directly over the fire, lest the rain should extinguish it; and the smoke therefore naturally fills the place before it escapes.

    The Cellars There are five reasons we should drink; Good wine --; a friend --; or being dry --; or lest we should be by and by --; or any other reason why.

    Four-year funding Lest anybody should have got the idea from my August column that I was in some way in favour of four-year funding of students of architecture, let me set the record straight.

    Regard,

    V.

  6. #6
    Raymott's Avatar
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    Default Re: lest/ should...

    Quote Originally Posted by vil View Post
    Hi teachers,

    I know at least two meanings of the “unfortunate” and “unpopular” in your judgment word “lest”:

    lest = 1. in order that…not
    2. after fear that, in order to prevent

    I am astonished at your ludicrous animosity towards it.
    [ ... ]
    I'll assume you're addressing these remarks to David; even though, to be fair, if there is any "ludicrous animosity" in his post, it is not towards the word "lest".

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