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    #1

    comprehension

    Dear teachers,

    Could you please kindly explain the use of "O" in this sentence?

    O for shorthand to take this down!

    Looking forward to hearing from you.
    Thank you in advance.

    Jiang

  1. MikeNewYork's Avatar
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    #2

    Re: comprehension

    "O" is an interjection. In some cases, yours included, it can be used to introduce an appeal to the powers that be in the universe. Another example would be "O to be young again".

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    #3

    Re: comprehension

    It's usually spelt Oh.
    Last edited by Rover_KE; 01-Apr-2015 at 17:57.

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    #4

    Re: comprehension

    Dear Mike,

    Thank you very much for your explanation.

    Could please kindly explain “for shorthand to take down”?


    The context is as follows:
    Twenty years and more he labored in collecting his material. He speaks frankly of his methods. He recorded the talk of Johnson and his associates partly by a rough shorthand of his own, partly by an exceptional memory, which he carefully trained for this very purpose. “O for shorthand to take this down!” said he to Mrs. Thrale as they listened to Johnson; and she replied: “You’ll carry it all in your head; a long head is as good as shorthand”.
    Mrs. Thrale advised Boswell to ______________.
    a. practice shorthand b. train a good memory
    The key is b.

    Looking forward to hearing from you.
    Thank you in advance.

    Jiang

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    #5

    Re: comprehension

    I am not a teacher.

    'To take down' in this context means to write down/to note.

    'Oh for shorthand to take this down!' is him lamenting the fact that he doesn't know proper shorthand. He has devised a personal sort of shorthand, (as mentioned in the previous sentence), and real shorthand would make recording Johnson's talk much easier.

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    #6

    Re: comprehension


    Neither Thank nor Like works.

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    #7

    Re: comprehension

    Dear Roman55,

    Could you explain why is it because he doesn't know proper shorthand suggests "train a good memory"?

    Looking forward to hearing from you.
    Thank you in advance.

    Jiang

  3. Roman55's Avatar
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    #8

    Re: comprehension

    I am not a teacher.

    It doesn't suggest that. I was answering the question you asked in #4.

    The point is that Boswell doesn't know proper shorthand, so rather than trying to scribble things down inefficiently, Mrs Thrale's suggestion is that he train a good memory. By developing his memory he would be able to record Johnson's talk without taking extensive notes.

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    #9

    Re: comprehension

    Please note that a better title would have been O for shorthand to take this down.

    Extract from the Posting Guidelines:

    'Thread titles should include all or part of the word/phrase being discussed.'

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    #10

    Re: comprehension

    Yes. I know.

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