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  1. moonlike's Avatar
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    #1

    Take leave to doubt

    Hi
    Could you kindly help me with the meaning of the following sentence please?

    They take leave to doubt that the older generation has created the best of all possible worlds.

    Does it mean "there's no denying that..." or "undoubtedly"?
    Thanks a million.
    Being a non-native teacher, I'm so thrilled being in such a superb forum.

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    #2

    Re: Take leave to doubt

    No—just the opposite in fact.

    'They find it hard to believe that . . .'

    Rover
    Last edited by Rover_KE; 02-Jul-2012 at 09:52.

  2. charliedeut's Avatar
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    #3

    Re: Take leave to doubt

    I'd say it has been written after the "sick leave permit" structure (you are authorized to leave/miss work becuase you have a fever/bad cold...). So they "give themselves the permission/authorization" to doubt the world created is the best possible. It does sound a bit pompous to me, but that's how I read it.

    Greetings,

    charliedeut
    Please be aware that I'm neither a native English speaker nor a teacher.

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    #4

    Re: Take leave to doubt

    A little extra note that might be helpful, moonlike. This usage of "take leave" is uncommon and, as charliedeut says, can sound a bit pompous in contemporary speech. However, you might often hear "leave" used with this sense of "permission" in law court scenes in movies or on TV where a lawyer will say "I seek leave of the court" to present some evidence, or "I seek leave to appeal" a case. This is the formal way in which the lawyer asks for the court's permission.
    I mention it because I heard it on TV last night and it reminded me of your post.

    not a teacher

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