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Home :: Archive :: 1999 :: March ::
Re: A Slip of the Quill
The Shakespeare Conference: SHK 10.0361  Wednesday 3 March 1999.

[1]     From:   Stephanie Hughes <
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        Date:   Tuesday, 02 Mar 1999 11:28:45 +0000
        Subj:   Re: SHK 10.0350 A Slip of the Quill

[2]     From:   Peter Hillyar-Russ <
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        Date:   Wednesday, 3 Mar 1999 08:14:58 -0000
        Subj:   A Slip of the Quill (It's me)


[1]-----------------------------------------------------------------
From:           Stephanie Hughes <
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Date:           Tuesday, 02 Mar 1999 11:28:45 +0000
Subject: 10.0350 A Slip of the Quill
Comment:        Re: SHK 10.0350 A Slip of the Quill

Regarding the slip of the quill suggested by Mr. Al-Ghamdi,
Shakespeare's use of "between you and I" in MOV, it may well have been a
mistake on the part of the compositor. If not, Shakespeare, or his
compositors, was/were guilty throughout of a number of grammatical
errors to our present way of thinking, including a plentiful use of
double negatives.

Modern grammar rules were in their infancy in Shakespeare's time, as was
modern spelling, and most writers left it up to their compositors to
follow whatever format they and their printer deemed proper. There was
little as yet that was agreed on by all. What these rules were to be was
a source of much discussion and argument at the time. We do need to give
the Bard the benefit of any doubt we may have.

Stephanie Hughes

[2]-------------------------------------------------------------
From:           Peter Hillyar-Russ <
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Date:           Wednesday, 3 Mar 1999 08:14:58 -0000
Subject:        A Slip of the Quill (It's me)

Ali A. Al-Ghamdi says of "It's me"

>That's grammatically wrong. Good English, of course, invokes the law of
>the predicate nominative, which calls for "It's I." Even better English,
>which eschews contractions, would be, "It is I."

Well, certainly, every one says so - but I think there is a grammatical
error being made by the critics in assuming that "me" can only be an
accusative pronoun. Certainly "To be" is an intransitive verb, so "It is
+ [accusative]" would be a solecism. But surely "me" here is not an
accusative, but an ethic dative. The French use "C'est moi" in these
circumstances, and a similar dative form exists in classical Greek (and
I presume, without knowledge, in Latin too).

The grammatical purists to whom Ali alludes are not, (in my very humble
opinion), as grammatically literate as they think.

Peter
 

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