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    #1

    ...lest it deter/deters...

    The phasing out of ministers is a delicate matter which must be handled with dignity and decorum, he added.

    That is because it should not be "turned into a public spectacle, lest it deters even more good people from entering politics."

    Can 'deter' be used in place of 'deters'. It seems I see both verbs used. Is one of them an error?

    Thanks.

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    #2

    Re: ...lest it deter/deters...

    I would use "deter." This is one of those "subjunctives," I believe. More common in AmE.

  1. 5jj's Avatar
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    #3

    Re: ...lest it deter/deters...

    Those who still use the subjunctive think that only that form is correct - 'deter'. Actually, 'lest' is itself not commonly used in everday speech and writing; I imagine that most people who use it would also use the subjunctive. I would.

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    #4

    Re: ...lest it deter/deters...

    Quote Originally Posted by Tan Elaine View Post

    Can 'deter' be used in place of 'deters'. YES, and I would prefer "deter". It seems I see both verbs used. Me too. Is one of them an error? Not necessarily. But, as I said, in this sentence, I feel that "deter" is the correct choice of words.
    John

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