"I can't imagine what spring would look like here, if it ever comes; still less a spring-cleaning." [J.R.R. Tolkien, "The Lord of the Rings"]
I can't get the meaning of a clause after a semicolon -- there is no verb there. What can it mean?
"I can't imagine" which is omitted, also refers to "a spring-cleaning". "Still less" emphasizes the truthfulness of the second statement much more. It means that he can't imagine what a spring-cleaning would be like either.
Here's another example; a line from The return of the Jedi:
"Luke? Luke's crazy. He can't even take care of himself, much less (still less also fits here) rescue anybody".
Native speakers may give a more exact explanation.
Last edited by retro; 15-Oct-2006 at 15:48.