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Prepositions #208510
12/27/12 05:58 PM
12/27/12 05:58 PM
Joined: Jun 2008
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Land of the Flat Water
LukeJavan8 Offline OP
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LukeJavan8  Offline OP
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Land of the Flat Water
If it's a sin to end a sentence with one preposition, then presumably it's even worse to end it with two. How far can we take this? For the August 1968 issue of Word Ways: The Journal of Recreational Linguistics, Darryl Francis devised one sentence that ends with nine prepositions. If the Yardbirds' 1966 single "Over, Under, Sideways, Down" were exported to Australia and then retrieved by a traveler, the question might be asked:

"What did he bring 'Over, Under, Sideways, Down' up from Down Under for?"

Inspired, Ralph Beaman pointed out that if this issue of the journal were now brought to a boy who slept on the upper floor of a lighthouse, he might ask:

"What did you bring me the magazine I didn't want to be read to out of about '"Over Under, Sideways, Down" up from Down Under' up around for?"

"This has a total of fifteen terminal prepositions," writes Ross Eckler, "but the end is not in sight; for now the little boy can complain in similar vein about the reading material provided in this issue of Word Ways, adding a second 'to out of about' at the beginning and 'up around for' at the end of the preposition string. The mind boggles at the infinite regress which has now been established."

-Greg Ross, Language 26 December 2012


----please, draw me a sheep----
Re: Prepositions [Re: LukeJavan8] #208514
12/27/12 09:25 PM
12/27/12 09:25 PM
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R'lyeh
zmjezhd Offline
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zmjezhd  Offline
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R'lyeh
If it's a sin to end a sentence with one preposition

No, it's not. This "rule" was made up out of whole cloth by one fellow: John Dryden. Even Bishop Lowth made fun of it in his mostly prescriptive grammar. It is just plain wrong, and the folks who propagate it ought to have their necks wringed.


Ceci n'est pas un seing.
Re: Prepositions [Re: LukeJavan8] #208515
12/28/12 12:20 AM
12/28/12 12:20 AM
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Faldage Offline
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Faldage  Offline
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Originally Posted By: LukeJavan8


"What did he bring 'Over, Under, Sideways, Down' up from Down Under for?"



Five yard penalty. "Over, Under, Sideways, Down" is a title so the status of the constituent members of the title as prepositions is deemed inadmissible. The same goes for the phrase "Down Under", which is acting as a noun phrase. Any examples involving these are ruled out of bounds for the desired effect.

Re: Prepositions [Re: Faldage] #208516
12/28/12 04:11 AM
12/28/12 04:11 AM
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this too shall pass
tsuwm Offline
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this too shall pass
just so.
-The Commissioner

Re: Prepositions [Re: tsuwm] #208520
12/28/12 08:07 AM
12/28/12 08:07 AM
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Posts: 959
Alaska
Tromboniator Offline
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Tromboniator  Offline
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Alaska
The whole point of this exercise is to answer absurdity with absurdity. Why take all the fun out of it with rules and logic?

Re: Prepositions [Re: Tromboniator] #208523
12/28/12 01:59 PM
12/28/12 01:59 PM
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R'lyeh
zmjezhd Offline
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zmjezhd  Offline
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R'lyeh
The whole point of this exercise is to answer absurdity with absurdity. Why take all the fun out of it with rules and logic?

'Cause that's how I exist.


Ceci n'est pas un seing.
Re: Prepositions [Re: Faldage] #208639
01/02/13 01:40 AM
01/02/13 01:40 AM
Joined: Oct 2010
Posts: 1,070
London, UK
A
A C Bowden Offline
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A C Bowden  Offline
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London, UK
Quote:
"Over, Under, Sideways, Down"

"Sideways" is an adverb, not a preposition.

Re: Prepositions [Re: LukeJavan8] #208642
01/02/13 02:17 AM
01/02/13 02:17 AM
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Faldage Offline
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Faldage  Offline
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Good point.


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