ever stopped

Sukhomvit

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In Out of Africa by I Dinensen, author talks about African singing.
"It was pleasant to listen, in the night air, to the one gentle voice being raised, and to the regularly repeated, measured call of young voices. But as it went on all night, with the drums falling in for an effect from time to time, it became both deadly monotonous and strangely excruciating to hear, as if you could not bear either to have it going on for one moment longer, or to have it ever stopped."
Please Teachers or Members tell me what bold words mean. Thanks in advance!
 

emsr2d2

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It means not only could the listener not bear to listen to it any more but he/she could also not bear to think of it ever stopping.
 

Sukhomvit

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Sorry I am not quite clear. What do you mean "ever stopping"?
 

Raymott

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I read it to mean "stopping for ever". It's an old-fashioned usage. She can't bear any more of it now, but she couldn't bear it if she didn't ever heard it again.
 
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