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    #1

    Amazing Grace

    I've always been hung up on this verse of Amazing Grace for two reasons:

    When we've been there 10,000 years
    Bright shining as the sun,
    We've no less days to sing God's praise

    Than when we've first begun.

    1. It seems to me that the final line should technically utilize the past perfect and therefore read, "Than when we'd (we had) first begun." (implying that the start of the singing of God's praise begins later than now) or potentially, "Than when we first began."
    2. Third line should be, "We've no fewer days..."

    ...although I'm not necessarily advocating the butchering an old hymn of the church, I think #1 at least maintains the pseudo-rhyme while correcting the grammar.



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    #2

    Re: Amazing Grace

    Welcome to the forums, davidboy.

    That's poetic licence for you.

    I agree that grammatically it would be better as

    'We've no fewer days to sing God's praise
    Than when we first began.'

  1. BobK's Avatar
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    #3

    Re: Amazing Grace

    I have a feeling that the man who wrote this (a reformed slave-trader) wasn't a very lettered man. In fact, I believe many printed texts (and possibly the original) have the (mistaken, or at least dialectal) simple past 'Than when we first begun'.

    b

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