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    #1

    What's a "stern grip"?

    I read it from a book written by B. Bryson in which he writes:
    "You're astounded to discover, by means of a stern grip on your elbow, that gas station road maps are no longer free."
    Is he referring to some kind of technology gadget that one uses to search for the routes to follow, which costs money?

  1. 5jj's Avatar
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    #2

    Re: What's a "stern grip"?

    No. somebody has gripped your elbow firmly to prevent your leaving without paying for the map.

  2. BobK's Avatar
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    #3

    Re: What's a "stern grip"?

    The grip is firm. But Bill Bryson knows what he's doing. The person administering the grip has a stern attitude to the theft. The matching of the same vowel sound, preceded by a fricative (/f/) and an consonant cluster that starts with a sibilant (/st/) and followed by nasal consonants - /m/ and /n/ respectively - adds to the effect and immediacy of the phrase.

    b

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    #4

    Re: What's a "stern grip"?

    Quote Originally Posted by BobK View Post
    The grip is firm. But Bill Bryson knows what he's doing. The person administering the grip has a stern attitude to the theft. The matching of the same vowel sound, preceded by a fricative (/f/) and an consonant cluster that starts with a sibilant (/st/) and followed by nasal consonants - /m/ and /n/ respectively - adds to the effect and immediacy of the phrase.

    b
    I am not a teacher.

    The rhetorical device is hypallage, the deliberate application of an attribute to the wrong element.

  3. BobK's Avatar
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    #5

    Re: What's a "stern grip"?

    I knew it was intentional, but didn't know the word. Thanks

    b

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