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    • Member Info
      • Native Language:
      • (Afan) Oromo
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      • Aaland
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      • Aaland

    • Join Date: Jul 2008
    • Posts: 17
    #1

    how am I ever to know

    You won't admit you love me,
    and so how am I ever to know.

    Can you explain this strange construction?

    • Member Info
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      • English
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      • United States
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      • United States

    • Join Date: Jan 2008
    • Posts: 2,944
    #2

    Re: how am I ever to know

    Better construction would be:

    You won't admit you love me,
    so how would I ever know?


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

    • Join Date: Oct 2008
    • Posts: 907
    #3

    Re: how am I ever to know

    Dear Dimkin:

    The sentence is dramatic/poetic.

    You won't admit you love me, so how am I ever to know?

    how = by what means?

    am I ever to know = will I ever know (whether you love me or not)?

    Other dramatic, (some would say melodramatic) examples:

    'Oh, dearest, are we ever to meet again?'

    How was she ever to repay the kindness of her friends?

    Was the spring ever to arrive?

    These are not everyday usages. As I write them, I see an actor, on a stage, making exaggerated gestures to accompany the words.

    I hope this is helpful,

    Petra

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