as if by a madman

azz

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Jul 27, 2004
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Student or Learner
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French
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France
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United States
Can one say
a. The letter was written as if by a madman, but we knew that whoever had written was quite sane. There was nobody mad among us.
b. The letter was written like by a madman, but we knew that whoever had written was quite sane. There was nobody mad among us.

c. The room had been vandalized, as if by madmen.
d. The room had been vandalized, like by madmen.
?

My feeling is that the ones with 'like' don't work.

Many thanks.
 
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emsr2d2

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Jul 28, 2009
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English Teacher
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UK
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Can one say the following?
a. The letter was written as if by a madman, but we knew that whoever had written it was quite sane. There was nobody mad among us. :tick:
b. The letter was written like by a madman, but we knew that whoever had written it was quite sane. There was nobody mad among us. :cross:

c. The room had been vandalized, as if by madmen. :tick:
d. The room had been vandalized, like by madmen. :cross:
[STRIKE]?[/STRIKE]

My feeling is that the ones with 'like' don't work. You're right, they don't work.

Many thanks.

See above.

Note that I changed your opening question so that it was complete. It avoids having such a huge space between the words "Can one say" and the associated question mark.
 
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