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    #1

    keep up appearances

    Dear teachers,

    Would you tell me whether I am right wit my interpretation of the expression in bold in the following sentence?

    At home, where you were so little known, it was still possible to keep up appearances; that would be quite vain in this province… (R. I. Stevenson, The Master of Ballantrae” )

    keep up appearances = pretend that nothing happened

    As a matter of fact, I found a close interpretation of the expression in question in the link

    Keeping up with the Joneses: Information from Answers.com

    namely “to maintain a good front, make things look good even if they're not”.

    It should be mentioned here that I was accused of plagiarism yesterday from one retired English teacher from the present forum because by his words I have quoted a definition from an Online Free Dictionary in my tread and claimed it as my original interpretation. The next laughable accusation was that I waste his (your) valuable time. Would you tell me what I had to do? Maybe I should have asked my diseased grandmother?

    I beg your pardon if I had burden you with my pestilent questions, but if you really and truly though as mentioned above creature, so you are out of place.

    Thanks for your efforts.

    Regards,

    V

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    #2

    Re: keep up appearances

    Yes. it has the idea of presenting some sort of façade so that people get the impression that things are better than they are.

    Plagiarism- technically speaking, you should say that the definition is from that dictionary, and we do have to be careful to show that we respect copyright- the laws in some countries are draconian, so while an individual defintion is not of ay great importance, the general idea of referencing is. . And diseased/pestilent/out of place are not diplomatic phrases, so let's try to keep a handle on things before they escalate, please.

  1. 5jj's Avatar
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    #3

    Re: keep up appearances

    Quote Originally Posted by vil View Post
    I was accused of plagiarism yesterday from one retired English teacher from the present forum because by his words I have quoted a definition from an Online Free Dictionary in my thread and claimed it as my original interpretation. The next laughable accusation was that I waste his (your) valuable time.
    I am that retired English teacher. I did not use the word 'plagiarism'. What I wrote was, "I really don't see the point of your taking a definition directly from [...], claiming it as your interpretation, and then asking us if you are right. You are wasting the time of people who could be answering genuine questions".

    Most of your posts begin with some such words as Would you tell me whether I am right with my interpretation of the expression in bold in the following sentence?

    The interpretation that you give is usually taken word for word from some on-line dictionary, thesaurus or collection of idioms. I can see the point of your question if you think that your source has made a mistake. I cannot see the point of asking us to confirm that you are right in your interpretation. I still consider that to be a waste of time.

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