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    #1

    by the way sb does sth

    A great man shows his greatness ______ the way he treats little men.
    A. under B. with C. on D. by

    The given answer is D. But I feel this sentence unnatural. I would leave out the prep. 'by' and only just say '...the way he treats little men'. Am I right?
    Could I ask native speakers to help me out please? Thank you in advance.

  1. stuartnz's Avatar
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    #2

    Re: by the way sb does sth

    Quote Originally Posted by joham View Post
    A great man shows his greatness ______ the way he treats little men.
    A. under B. with C. on D. by

    The given answer is D. But I feel this sentence unnatural. I would leave out the prep. 'by' and only just say '...the way he treats little men'. Am I right?
    Could I ask native speakers to help me out please? Thank you in advance.
    I'm not a professional teacher, but I am a native speaker and I would definitely say that it must be "by the way". Omitting "by" would make the sentence sound wrong, a breach of natural grammar. The Oxford English Dictionary lists several definitions of "by" that all serve to "Introduce the means or instrumentality", and that's what "by" does here. It introduces the means for determining the man's character. How do we measure a man's greatness? By the way he treats lesser men.


    • Join Date: Aug 2006
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    #3

    Re: by the way sb does sth

    Quote Originally Posted by joham View Post
    A great man shows his greatness ______ the way he treats little men.
    A. under B. with C. on D. by

    The given answer is D. But I feel this sentence __?___ unnatural. I would leave out the prep. 'by' and only just say '...the way he treats little men'. Am I right?
    Could I ask native speakers to help me out please? Thank you in advance.
    I agree with Stuart on the 'by', but is "little men" natural?

    "lesser men"

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