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Can I use the phrase "by God" to imply I'm talking about God, while also using it as an interjection?

So e.g.:

  • By God, it was a difficult thing to do, who has long since given up on me.
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    You might possibly get away with it in a written piece if you moved the relative clause up: By God (who has long since given up on me) it was a difficult thing to do!
    – TimR
    Jan 30, 2016 at 17:07
  • @TimRomano appreciated. specifically (sorry i never provide the right context) i'm asking whether the quote could be of god, in this poem en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Banal_Sojourn
    – user99677
    Jan 30, 2016 at 17:09
  • Sorry, I do not follow. Are you referring to Pardie?
    – TimR
    Jan 30, 2016 at 17:14
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    The Third Commandment is still in effect, you know.
    – Ricky
    Jan 30, 2016 at 17:58
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    Nope. You might argue that it's technically correct, but most people would read it as nonsense.
    – Hot Licks
    Jan 30, 2016 at 18:52

1 Answer 1

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No, this is not grammatical. To understand why, replace "God" with "John" and simplify the sentence, because perhaps the "By God" idiom doesn't allow you to see it very clearly.

*By John, cutting the grass was a difficult thing to do, who has long since given up on me
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  • hello digicula. thanks for the reply, tho tbh i'm not sure i follow
    – user99677
    Jan 30, 2016 at 17:06
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    In the sentence I gave you, *By John, cutting the grass was a difficult thing to do, who has long since given up on me, the syntax is improper. "By John" here simply describes the phrase "cutting the grass was a difficult thing to do" (and rather poorly; "According to John" would be more idiomatic). For the sentence to be grammatical, you would need to phrase it as such: "John, who has long since given up on me, says that cutting the grass was a difficult thing to do".
    – user157304
    Jan 30, 2016 at 17:10
  • ok thanks for the clarification, tho i'd have to just agree rather than think it thru. grammar eh
    – user99677
    Jan 30, 2016 at 17:11
  • what about "I swore to John, cutting the grass is a pain, who has long since stopped paying me attention"
    – user99677
    Jan 30, 2016 at 17:14
  • This is barely better, but it doesn't work without swapping the clauses: It should read: I swore to John, who has long since stopped paying me attention, that cutting the grass is a pain. It's not elegant, and I wouldn't use it, but it's grammatical
    – user157304
    Jan 31, 2016 at 6:17

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