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  1. suprunp's Avatar
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    #1

    it was not so much hidden, but that I could tell

    Suddenly, I passed from abstraction to intentness; for there, in its standing place, I made out a long undulation, rounded off with the heavy dust. Yet it was not so much hidden, but that I could tell what had caused it. I knew—and shivered at the knowledge—that it was a human body, ages-dead, lying there, beneath the place where I had slept.
    (The House on the Borderland; William Hope Hodgson)

    Would you be so kind as to explain to me how exactly this sentence works? I can infer the meaning from the context, but the minute details of such a construction seem to escape me.

    Thanks.



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    #2

    Re: it was not so much hidden, but that I could tell

    Answered here.

  2. suprunp's Avatar
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    #3

    Re: it was not so much hidden, but that I could tell

    Thank you Rover_KE.

    But those are answers to a totally different question altogether.

    At the risk of repeating myself, I understand the sentence and can paraphrase it.
    Exactly how "Yet it was not so much hidden but that I could not tell what had caused it." is turned into "Yet it was not so much hidden, but that I could tell what had caused it." and what role but plays in the latter is unclear though.

    In other words, I have an insufficient knowledge of the inner workings of the original sentence to be able to successfully produce a similar one without being ambiguous or completely failing at the attempt.

    Thanks.
    Last edited by suprunp; 06-Apr-2015 at 12:38.

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