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  1. Member
    Interested in Language
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      • Native Language:
      • Armenian
      • Home Country:
      • Armenia
      • Current Location:
      • Armenia

    • Join Date: Apr 2014
    • Posts: 288

    severity and majesty of truth

    Dear friends, could you paraphrase the last sentence of this excerpt? Why is 'truth' written without a definite article? What does it mean here?

    "There are certain themes of which the interest is all-absorbing, but which are too entirely horrible for thepurposes of legitimate fiction. These the mere romanticist must eschew, if he do not wish to offend, or to disgust.
    They are with propriety handled, only when the severity and majesty of truth sanctify and sustain them." (

    My version is as follows: "They are treated duly only when the seriousness and majesty of that reality sanctify and reinforce them."
    Last edited by Mher; 10-Mar-2015 at 14:47.
    2015 is the 100th Anniversary of the Armenian Genocide - the first genocide of the 20th century.

  2. MikeNewYork's Avatar
    VIP Member
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    Re: severity and majesty of truth

    "Truth" can be used without an article as an absolute.

  3. Charlie Bernstein's Avatar
    Key Member
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    Re: severity and majesty of truth

    Well put, Mike.

    The truth separates fact from fiction: The truth is, I didn't want to see the stupid movie anyway.

    A truth is a piece of wisdom: "You can't fight fire with fire" was a truth he learned by being burned many times.

    Truth is an ideal: She spent her career fighting for truth, justice, and equality.
    I'm not a teacher. I speak American English. I've tutored writing at the University of Southern Maine and have done a good deal of copy editing and writing, occasionally for publication.

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