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    #1

    Who is doing what and of whom in a looong sentence...

    Hello everyone just two hours before the "Old Year" dies out! Well, looks like I keep my promise and here I bring my first problematic sentence from "My Kinsman, Major Molineux". I guess everybody knows the story so without further ado I just bring the sentence which is actually the second one in this story. It's quite a long one though:

    "The people looked with most jealous scrutiny to the exercise of power, which did not emanate from themselves, and they usually rewarded the rulers with slender gratitude, for the compliances, by which, in softening their instructions form beyond the sea, they had incurred the rephrehension of those who gave them." Uffff....

    First part of this humongous sentence is pretty clear to me but I just get lost with the beginning of the bold part of it. There are three parts involved in this situation: people residing in a colony, colony governors brought from Britain and rulers in Britain ("kings of G.B.") and I can't get straight with who is "doing" what and "of" whom there.

    1. Who is showing "compliances" and in which sense (or way)?
    2. In what way does those "compliances" soften "their" instructions?
    3. Who incurs "the reprehension of those who gave" those instructions?
    4. And who actually gave those "instructions?

    Thank you and happy New Year!

  1. 5jj's Avatar
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    #2

    Re: Who is doing what and of whom in a looong sentence...

    Quote Originally Posted by szaroczek View Post
    "[...] for the compliances, by which, in softening their instructions form beyond the sea, they had incurred the rephrehension of those who gave them."

    1. Who is showing "compliances" and in which sense (or way)?
    The rulers (the colonial governors) . Browse 1828 => Word COMPLIANCE :: Search the 1828 Noah Webster's Dictionary of the English Language (FREE) :: 1828.mshaffer.com
    2. In what way does those "compliances" soften "their" instructions?
    I assume that the governors had borne in mind the wishes/needs/hopes/etc of the people, and had governed less harshly than they had been instructed.
    3. Who incurs "the reprehension of those who gave" those instructions? The Governors.
    4. And who actually gave those "instructions? The King - or his ministers.
    Nathaniel could spin out a sentence when the mood took him.

    Happy New Year.

    • Member Info
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    #3

    Re: Who is doing what and of whom in a looong sentence...

    Man, I just don't know what to say... I got stuck there for I think half and hour and began getting headache. And now I can happily go on with the text. Just... thank you.

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