Results 1 to 6 of 6
    • Member Info
      • Native Language:
      • American English
      • Home Country:
      • United States
      • Current Location:
      • United States

    • Join Date: Jul 2015
    • Posts: 23
    #1

    "Lord have mercy"

    Hello everyone, I have a question regarding the phrase "Lord have mercy"

    Should there not be a comma before 'have' in that phrase? e.g. "Lord, have mercy."

    Also, I wanted to know if it is possible to replace the last noun (mercy) in that phrase to a person, place, or thing.

    • Member Info
      • Native Language:
      • American English
      • Home Country:
      • United States
      • Current Location:
      • United States

    • Join Date: Dec 2015
    • Posts: 9,250
    #2

    Re: "Lord have mercy"

    "Lord have mercy" as an exclamation does not require a comma. If those words are the beginning of a prayer, then it does.

    I don't understand what your second sentence means. You can't say e.g. "Lord have Disneyland," if you're thinking of replacing "mercy" with some other noun.
    I am not a teacher.

    • Member Info
      • Native Language:
      • American English
      • Home Country:
      • United States
      • Current Location:
      • United States

    • Join Date: Jul 2015
    • Posts: 23
    #3

    Re: "Lord have mercy"

    I apologize. I meant something along the lines of lord have patience, determination, etc. I always hear people switching the different types of qualities in that kind of exclamation.

    However, what I meant to say is it possible to use a different kind of noun when using that type of verb in a sentence? For example, "You can have (insert name here). I don't want him/her" or "You're going to have him/her in your class next year."

    In the case of my second sentence, would it be possible to switch the quality (mercy in this case) presented in the exclamation to a person?

    Like say, "Lord, have (insert name here)." or "Lord, have him/her."
    Last edited by infinity42; 04-Jan-2016 at 07:02.

  1. Skrej's Avatar
    • Member Info
      • Native Language:
      • English
      • Home Country:
      • United States
      • Current Location:
      • United States

    • Join Date: May 2015
    • Posts: 2,388
    #4

    Re: "Lord have mercy"

    Quote Originally Posted by infinity42 View Post
    However, what I meant to say is it possible to use a different kind of noun when using that type of verb in a sentence? For example, "You can have (insert name here). I don't want him/her" or "You're going to have him/her in your class next year."
    Yes, these are all acceptable, in the right context.

    Quote Originally Posted by infinity42 View Post
    In the case of my second sentence, would it be possible to switch the quality (mercy in this case) presented in the exclamation to a person?

    Like say, "Lord, have (insert name here)." or "Lord, have him/her."
    No, these don't work except perhaps in a very limited context - say maybe in a prayer for a recently deceased person. Even then it doesn't sound very natural.


    'Lord have mercy' is a set phrase, so you can't really swap out different qualities, especially when it's being used as an interjection.

    There might be a few other qualities you could swap out that might work in certain contexts, but I'd mostly consider it a set phrase.


    On a marginally related side note, here's a polka with lyrics using the phrase "You can have her".
    Wear short sleeves! Support your right to bare arms!

    • Member Info
      • Native Language:
      • American English
      • Home Country:
      • United States
      • Current Location:
      • United States

    • Join Date: Apr 2009
    • Posts: 12,307
    #5

    Re: "Lord have mercy"

    Yes, use a comma. It's like "Steve, get the eggs."

    • Member Info
      • Native Language:
      • British English
      • Home Country:
      • UK
      • Current Location:
      • Laos

    • Join Date: Nov 2002
    • Posts: 57,815
    #6

    Re: "Lord have mercy"

    You do see it used with and without the comma. I assume that those who use the comma could see it as speaking directly to God, and those who don't use a comma see it more as a subjunctive exhortation, like May the Lord have mercy.

Similar Threads

  1. [Vocabulary] (MEANING????) "Mercy"
    By Goodafter Noon in forum Ask a Teacher
    Replies: 2
    Last Post: 24-Jun-2015, 08:56
  2. Replies: 1
    Last Post: 26-Aug-2013, 16:03
  3. "... are now on the mercy of ..."
    By Odessa Dawn in forum Ask a Teacher
    Replies: 2
    Last Post: 13-Nov-2012, 14:15
  4. Replies: 4
    Last Post: 17-Sep-2012, 04:23
  5. [Grammar] Is "Mercy" countable or uncountable?
    By Marybeth in forum Ask a Teacher
    Replies: 2
    Last Post: 22-Oct-2009, 22:46

Bookmarks

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •