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    • Join Date: Jan 2006
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    #1

    No man living could do it.

    "No man living could do it."

    I don't understand why "man" is modified from the
    back by "living"(a present participle) , though there is no other modifiers.
    Is this a special case?

    Could anyone tell me why?

  1. rewboss's Avatar

    • Join Date: Feb 2006
    • Posts: 1,552
    #2

    Re: No man living could do it.

    Really, it's literary or poetic language.

    You often find unusual or old-fashioned constructions in literature and poetry. This isn't something that you should try to do yourself unless you are a very, very good writer.

    This usage can be defended, though. It's in parallel with constructions like, "No man standing in an empty room..." or "No man reading the Guardian...". In normal English usage, though, if the -ing form has no objects, we usually treat it like a normal adjective and put it in front of the verb it modifies.

    In short: Don't do it yourself, but understand that it isn't automatically wrong.

  2. MikeNewYork's Avatar
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    #3

    Re: No man living could do it.

    Quote Originally Posted by YOSHITAKEHORI View Post
    "No man living could do it."

    I don't understand why "man" is modified from the
    back by "living"(a present participle) , though there is no other modifiers.
    Is this a special case?

    Could anyone tell me why?
    I agree with the other poster. I will only add that this positioning adds emphasis to "living". In this case, that is curious because the only thing a dead man can do better than a living one is hold his breath.

  3. rewboss's Avatar

    • Join Date: Feb 2006
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    #4

    Re: No man living could do it.

    Quote Originally Posted by MikeNewYork View Post
    In this case, that is curious because the only thing a dead man can do better than a living one is hold his breath.
    Not having any experience of the afterlife, I couldn't tell you if that was the case...

  4. MikeNewYork's Avatar
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    #5

    Re: No man living could do it.

    Quote Originally Posted by rewboss View Post
    Not having any experience of the afterlife, I couldn't tell you if that was the case...
    Unfortunately, I have a lot of experience with corpses.


    • Join Date: Jan 2006
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    #6

    Re: No man living could do it.

    Dear All,
    Thank you very much!

  5. MikeNewYork's Avatar
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    #7

    Re: No man living could do it.

    Quote Originally Posted by YOSHITAKEHORI View Post
    Dear All,
    Thank you very much!
    You're very welcome.

  6. sk_te_amor's Avatar

    • Join Date: Jul 2006
    • Posts: 28
    #8

    Question what ıs problem ??

    why dont u lıke than men ??? :P he he

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