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    #1

    complicated sentence

    Would anybody like to explain the following problems that I face while I read the following sentences?

    " Alive, Miss Emily had been a tradition, a duty, and a care; a sort of hereditary obligation upon the town, dating from that day in 1894 when Colonel Sartoris, the mayor -- he who fathered the edict that no Negro woman should appear on the streets without an apron -- remitted her taxes, the dispensation dating from the death of her father on into perpetuity. Not that Miss Emily would have accepted charity."

    -- William Faulkner, "A Rose for Emily" (1930).

    1) What is the function of 'Alive' in this sentence? Is it a form of reduced clause? Please give me some examples related to this kind of structure where single word stands alone at the starting of a sentence. I think this kind of words that stand alone at the end and starting point of a sentence are able to work as adjective or adverb.

    2)"Miss Emily had been a tradition" ...... what does it mean? Is it possible for a woman to be a tradition?

    3) "..........on the streets without an apron -- remitted her taxes."

    How "remitted her taxes" is related to the other parts of this sentence? Again I wish some examples related to this. Please, if it is possible to you, give some examples.

    4) " ........ the dispensation dating from the death of her father on into perpetuity. Not that Miss Emily would have accepted charity."

    a) Is "the dispensation dating from ....... on into perpetuity." working here as appositive? If it is not, what is it?

    b) Two prepositions have been used here (on into perpetuity). Why? Is it possible? Would you like to give some examples?

  1. Calis's Avatar
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    #2

    Re: complicated sentence

    Quote Originally Posted by Nazmul Hassan View Post
    Would anybody like (it would be better to say "would anyone care to explain") to explain the following problems that I faced while I read the following sentences? (The tenses of "that I faced" and "while I read" have to match)

    " Alive, Miss Emily had been a tradition, a duty, and a care; a sort of hereditary obligation upon the town, dating from that day in 1894 when Colonel Sartoris, the mayor -- he who fathered the edict that no Negro woman should appear on the streets without an apron -- remitted her taxes, the dispensation dating from the death of her father on into perpetuity. Not that Miss Emily would have accepted charity."

    -- William Faulkner, "A Rose for Emily" (1930).

    1) What is the function of 'Alive' in this sentence? Is it a form of reduced clause? Please give me some examples related to this kind of structure where a single word stands alone at the starting/beginning of a sentence. I think these kinds of words that stand alone at the end and starting point of a sentence are able to work as adjectives or adverbs.

    2)"Miss Emily had been a tradition" ...... what does it mean? Is it possible for a woman to be a tradition?

    3) "..........on the streets without an apron -- remitted her taxes."

    How is "remitted her taxes" related to the other parts of this sentence? Again I wish would like some examples related to this. Please, if it is possible to you, give some examples.

    4) " ........ the dispensation dating from the death of her father on into perpetuity. Not that Miss Emily would have accepted charity."

    a) Is "the dispensation dating from ....... on into perpetuity." working here as appositive? If it is not, what is it?

    b) Two prepositions have been used here (on into perpetuity). Why? Is it possible? Would you care to give some examples?
    The important thing to remember here is that this a literary text, so far less literal language is being used here. Another thing to remember is that I am not an English teacher, so I am not familiar with much of the particular terminology of grammar.

    1) From what I have read of reduced relative clauses, I believe so. "Alive" here means "When/while she was alive" and I do believe that it does serve as an adverb in this case, but of that I am not altogether too sure. Other words or phrases like this can also be used, like "Out of office, the President railed against the power of the executive. In office, he decried the executive's lack of power."

    2) Having read a synopsis of the text in question, her being a tradition refers to her unique status in the town as someone from the previous generation who must be "humoured and tolerated" according to Wikipedia. It is, as I said, a literary description. As you have, presumably, read all or most of the text, you are in a better place to make a judgement about what it means.

    3) The part of the sentence which includes "on the streets without an apron" is enclosed by dashes, so it is not connected to to the part including "remitted her taxes" in the way that I think you are implying. It can be removed from the sentence without making the sentence incomprehensible, and if we do so, we get: "Colonel Sartoria, the mayor, remitted her taxes, the dispensation..." I hope that makes it clearer.

    4) a) I think so, although I am not sure. What else it might be I don't know either.
    b) Two prepositions are used together fairly commonly in English: away from, out of, up into, up over etc. As I see it, the "on" links with the previous "from...". "Into perpetuity" is actually necessary here, because the dispensation was not created in perpetuity, butbecame perpetual, so it moved into perpetuity.

    [Not a teacher]

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    #3

    Re: complicated sentence

    Nazmul Hassan, for the third time, a better title would have been Alive, Miss Emily had been a tradition.


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

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    #4

    Re: complicated sentence

    Calis, you are really great.

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    #5

    Re: complicated sentence

    I agree. Calis's answer is remarkably thorough and scholarly.

    Now click Like to acknowledge that you have read and understood my post #3.

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