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  1. keannu's Avatar
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      • Native Language:
      • Korean
      • Home Country:
      • South Korea
      • Current Location:
      • South Korea

    • Join Date: Dec 2010
    • Posts: 5,226
    #1

    roused himself

    What is "rousing himself"? Did he pay great attention after her voice?
    What do you mean by "struggle with a slight embarrassment"? And did he throw off the embarrassment after or before the struggle?

    Hearts and Hands by O. Henry
    "Well, Mr. Easton, if you will make me speak first, I suppose I must. Don't vou ever recognize old friends when you meet them in the West?"
    The younger man roused himself sharply at the sound of her voice, seemed to struggle with a slight embarrassment which he threw off instantly, and then clasped her fingers with his left hand.

  2. emsr2d2's Avatar
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      • British English
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      • UK
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      • UK

    • Join Date: Jul 2009
    • Posts: 41,832
    #2

    Re: roused himself

    Quote Originally Posted by keannu View Post
    What is "rousing himself"? Did he pay great attention after her voice?
    What do you mean by "struggle with a slight embarrassment"? And did he throw off the embarrassment after or before the struggle?

    Hearts and Hands by O. Henry
    "Well, Mr. Easton, if you will make me speak first, I suppose I must. Don't vou ever recognize old friends when you meet them in the West?"
    The younger man roused himself sharply at the sound of her voice, seemed to struggle with a slight embarrassment which he threw off instantly, and then clasped her fingers with his left hand.
    At the sound of her voice, he became alert. He started to listen suddenly. Whatever it was he was doing before she started speaking, he stopped doing it and rapidly became alert and attentive.

    "He struggled with a slight embarrassment" - this suggests to me that briefly he could not remember who she was. The voice was familiar but he couldn't immediately bring to mind her name or perhaps how he knew her. We all know that is a rather embarrassing feeling. In his case, though, the feeling didn't last very long and he took her hand in greeting. The "struggle" and "embarrassment" were so brief that it probably only lasted a second or so, and then he "threw them off" (either he realised who she was quickly, or he managed to cover up the fact that he still couldn't remember) and then he took her hand.

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