Re: Ending a sentence with a prep

Subject: Re: Ending a sentence with a prep
From: Joanna Sheldon <cjs10 -at- CORNELL -dot- EDU>
Date: Fri, 20 Sep 1996 06:06:51 -0400

Mike --

>Although Fowler is undeniably a god of the English language, you have to be
a little suspicious of someone who, when discussing English grammar, can
come up with a sentence as long as the one Bill qouted.

>The man clearly breathes through his ears.

>>Fowler says: "Those who lay
>>down the universal principle that final prepositions are 'inelegant'
>>are unconsciously trying to deprive the English language of a
>>valuable idiomatic resource, which has been used freely by all our
>>greatest writers except those whose instinct for English idiom has
>>been overpowered by notions of correctness derived from Latin
>>standards."

Suspicious? -- Suspicious??!! Do you find that sentence hard to understand?

If a sentence works, if it reads well, if it is as elegant and well-balanced
as the sentence quoted, let it be as long as it bloody well wants to be! We
Americans have had it pounded into us since we were knee high to a
grasshopper that the ideal sentence contains no more than a subject, an
object and a verb. Does this hold true in England, as well, now? -- For
shame!

Joanna


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