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Do I just read too much High Fantasy? - Elf M. Sternberg
Do I just read too much High Fantasy?
In an article on the front page of the New York Times, a reporter included a quote from a French nobleman that he and his peers "must carry the values of nobility, set an example, and prove [to be] irreproachable."

What's with the "[to be]" inserted in there? Did the editor feel that the readers of the Times wouldn't know what "to prove irreproachable" meant? The meaning of "prove" here is synonymous with "exemplify"; is that use so archaic that people need translation?

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4 comments or Leave a comment
bemused_leftist From: bemused_leftist Date: October 6th, 2011 02:50 am (UTC) (Link)
rhythm? empahsis? sorry, but to me it does improve the sentence.
elfs From: elfs Date: October 6th, 2011 03:56 am (UTC) (Link)
Maybe so, but I don't see the point in changing the original quote. We don't correct the grammar of other speakers.
amindofiron From: amindofiron Date: October 6th, 2011 04:05 am (UTC) (Link)
I suspect that it might be the editor trying to "write the the lowest common denominator" to ensure that none of the possible readers miss the point.
tagryn From: tagryn Date: October 6th, 2011 10:39 am (UTC) (Link)
If its a translation from French, there's likely some latitude in how the original is interpreted as it moves into English, which would explain the brackets to try and cover the possibilities.
4 comments or Leave a comment