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    #1

    Question A sentence

    "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?
    Thanks,
    Nyggus

  1. retro's Avatar
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    #2

    Re: A sentence

    Quote Originally Posted by nyggus View Post
    "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?
    Thanks,
    Nyggus

    Hi!

    "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.

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