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    #1

    Is "that" as a conjunctive now redundant?

    Our Central Bank has issued a new coin which displays script from James Joyce's Ulysses:

    "Ineluctable modality of the visible: at least that if no more, thought through my eyes. Signatures of all things that I am here to read."

    The original written by Joyce omitted the "that" as a conjunctive:

    "Ineluctable modality of the visible: at least that if no more, thought through my eyes. Signatures of all things I am here to read."

    Which is better and why?

    It seems the conjunctive "that" is now entirely optional (or should that be It seems that the conjunctive "that" is now entirely optional ).
    Last edited by Jaggers; 11-Apr-2013 at 13:37. Reason: The fella at the top of the class told me to.

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    #2

    Re: Is "that" as a conjunctive now redundant?

    With or without 'that' in your examples, neither is better than the other.

    Rover
    Last edited by emsr2d2; 10-Apr-2013 at 23:35.

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    #3

    Re: Is "that" as a conjunctive now redundant?

    Thanks, I appreciate what this forum tries to do, but it would be helpful to explain why, or provide link.

  1. emsr2d2's Avatar
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    #4

    Re: Is "that" as a conjunctive now redundant?

    "That" is sometimes optional and sometimes required. I would say it's optional more often than not but it all depends on context. There have been quite a lot of threads on the subject. It's interesting that you have come to the conclusion that "that" is now optional based on the fact that someone writing in the early part of the 20th century omitted it but the bank have seemingly put it back in (or perhaps I should say they have "misquoted Joyce"). I would have expected the reverse conclusion.

    As far as your request for us to explain why, my answer is the same as it is several times a week on this forum - that's just the way it is.

    On a side note, I note that you are a native speaker. Please be aware that the learners on the site tend to read native speakers' posts and assume that they are written correctly. With that in mind, please go back into your first post on this thread and correct the punctuation. You have only put a punctuation mark at the end of one sentence - all the others are missing their final full stop.
    Remember - if you don't use correct capitalisation, punctuation and spacing, anything you write will be incorrect.

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    #5

    Re: Is "that" as a conjunctive now redundant?

    Thank you, and edited.

    By the way, you seem like a native speaker yourself, so you might consider using the more appropriate singular verb when describing the action of the bank above, ie "the bank has" rather than "the bank have".

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    #6

    Re: Is "that" as a conjunctive now redundant?

    Quote Originally Posted by Jaggers View Post
    By the way, you seem like a native speaker yourself, so you might consider using the more appropriate singular verb when describing the action of the bank above, ie "the bank has" rather than "the bank have".
    In British English the plural verb is acceptable and natural for organisations and companies. There are several examples of 'bank have' in the BNC.

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    #7

    Re: Is "that" as a conjunctive now redundant?

    Hi 5jj,

    You may be right but the BBC would seemingly disagree with you:

    "The names of many organisations are also collective nouns. For example:
    The BBC
    The British Council

    When you use a collective noun, it may be followed by either a singular or plural verb, depending on whether you are thinking of the group as a unit, in which case it will be singular, or as a number of individuals, in which case it will be plural"
    Learning English | BBC World Service

    In the above case, it would seem more likely that "bank" is used as a unit rather than a number of individuals and would consequently take the singular verb. As a native speaker, it jolted when emsr2d2 said "bank have" in the above context and would have expected "bank has".

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