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    #1

    lest

    Hi,

    What does the "lest" the plan become known.


    There was danger lest the plan become known.


    According to the definiton, it means "that", but what does the sentence mean when "lest" means "that" in the sentence?


    May I have your help?

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    #2

    Re: lest

    ***** I am not a teacher *****

    There was danger if the plan became known. "Lest," though, can add an element of danger or higher risk than "if." But in other cases, "if" could not be used as a synonym of "lest."

    As well, my computer dictionary terms "lest" as being formal.
    Last edited by Slot; 03-Jan-2011 at 07:16.

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    #3

    Re: lest

    Quote Originally Posted by Silverobama View Post
    Hi,

    What does the "lest" the plan become known.


    There was danger lest the plan become known.


    According to the definiton, it means "that", but what does the sentence mean when "lest" means "that" in the sentence?


    May I have your help?
    This sentence is logically incoherent to me as there is no contingency relation, which is concomitant of sentences containing negative purpose clauses introduced by the archaic linker "lest", between there being a danger and the plan's coming out in the open.

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    #4

    Re: lest

    Thanks a lot for coming here.

    Here is the quote from OED:

    Used after verbs of fearing, or phrases indicating apprehension or danger, to introduce a clause expressing the event that is feared; equivalent to the L. nē, and in Eng. often admitting of being replaced by that (without accompanying negative).

    And here is the source of this sentence:

    And I just don't know how to comprehend "lest" in the sentence, but Slot's idea seems fine to me.

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    #5

    Re: lest

    Quote Originally Posted by Silverobama View Post
    And I just don't know how to comprehend "lest" in the sentence, but Slot's idea seems fine to me.
    Thanks, I didn't know this meaning of "lest" either.

    I don't agree with Slot's idea unless they use "if" in a meaning that I don't understand. I think the original sentence means:

    There was a danger of the plan's becoming known.

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    #6

    Re: lest

    Quote Originally Posted by Silverobama View Post
    And here is the source of this sentence:
    I never saw 'lest' used this way:

    that (used after words expressing fear, danger, etc.): There was danger lest the plan become known.

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    #7

    Re: lest

    We must get back up the beach now lest the tide catches us.

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    #8

    Re: lest

    Quote Originally Posted by Silverobama View Post
    Thanks a lot for coming here.

    Here is the quote from OED:

    Used after verbs of fearing, or phrases indicating apprehension or danger, to introduce a clause expressing the event that is feared; equivalent to the L. nē, and in Eng. often admitting of being replaced by that (without accompanying negative).

    And here is the source of this sentence:

    And I just don't know how to comprehend "lest" in the sentence, but Slot's idea seems fine to me.
    But do note that it is given as Old English.

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    #9

    Re: lest

    Quote Originally Posted by Tdol View Post
    But do note that it is given as Old English.
    Thanks a lot, but can you tell me where did the dictionary note it as "Old English", if so, I will strike it out of my notebook.

    Thanks a lot

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    #10

    Re: lest

    "Lest" remains somewhat current in Canada and the Commonwealth. Each November 11 it is heard in the phrase "Lest we forget," in remembrance of those killed in the two world wars.

    This Google search illustrates the still-current usage of "lest" in Canada.

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