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I was reading a fantasy novel by Terry Brooks, The Sword of Shannara, and in the first paragraph I came across the following sentence:

His broad, windburned face bore a set, placid look, and only the wide gray eyes revealed the restless energy that burned beneath the calm exterior.

I know what the sentence means except for the part "bore a set" and I could not find anything so far on search-engines. I am not a frequent reader of novels but when I read I really want to know exactly what every sentence means so thanks in advanced.

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    Here, "bore a set" means "had a fixed." – Mark Hubbard Jul 19 '16 at 18:26
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    I think what's confusing you is "bore a set" is, by itself, incomplete. What's missing is "look". The guy's look was both set and placid. He looked stoic. – Dan Bron Jul 20 '16 at 20:21
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You are analyzing it wrong :-)

His face was broad and windburned, and the face bore a look that was set and placid.

The word "set" can be found in a dictionary, as a verb, noun and adjective. In this case, it is an adjective. There are various meanings, in this case: (of a person's expression) held for an unnatural long time without changing, typically as a reflection of determination.

  • thanks for the replay but what does "looking set" mean? – Doe McBond Jul 19 '16 at 18:34
  • "looking set" never occurs in the discussion and would be a very strange construction. What the original quote says is that he had a set and placid look. That means what he looked like was very set and placid. – MAP Jul 20 '16 at 1:25

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