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I'm struggling to understand if the sentence below is correct:

The first time they ventured in this bookshop, thus to find refuge and protection from the rain lashing on cobblestones outside, Paul immediately fell in love with the place, as for John, he didn't want to leave it anymore.

Is it possible for "thus to" to replace "in order to"? I'm never sure about the correct usage of "thus"... Also, is it possible to start a sentence with "thus"?

Thank you.

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    Where is this sentence from, please, Louisa? There is an unacceptable comma splice. // 'Thus to find' here means 'in so doing finding' and introduces a consequence, not a reason. It is incongruous, and while arguably not ungrammatical, is in a style I would avoid. // Even adjusting 'anymore' to 'any more' (I'm a Brit and the solid form is an Americanism) doesn't make it appear nearly as elegant as 'As for John ... he didn't want ever to leave'. Oct 14, 2021 at 11:35
  • Hello Edwin! The sentence is coming from a short novel that a friend of mine is working on. I'm trying to help her in doing so. I understand that the use of "thus" isn't correct here. Therefore, I've change the phrase for: "The first time they ventured into this bookshop, seeking refuge from the rain lashing down on the cobblestones outside, Paul immediately fell in love with the place. As for John... he didn't want ever to leave it." Does it sound less awkward? Thank you!
    – Louisa
    Oct 14, 2021 at 11:45
  • ............. Yes. Oct 14, 2021 at 12:02
  • I think the "thus to find ... outside" can be treated as a parenthetical. The comma splice would appear to be the use of a comma rather than a semicolon or period after "with the place".
    – chepner
    Oct 14, 2021 at 13:03
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    What "in order to" can actually be replaced with, in most cases, is just "to".
    – Marthaª
    Oct 14, 2021 at 14:45

2 Answers 2

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No, it can't necessarily replace it. Sometimes both will fit, but they do not mean the same thing.

Thus can usually be replaced by in this way.

In your example, thus reads oddly, but it is possible. I would read it as a comment from the narrator, "In this way they found refuge", rather than a representation of the characters' intentions.

You certainly can start a sentence with Thus — again, meaning the same as "In this way".

Thus is quite a formal word, not common in speech.

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  • Thank you for your clarifications and help Andy, and I am sorry that my question wasn't well explained.
    – Louisa
    Oct 13, 2021 at 22:39
  • @Louisa, the question was fine: Andy was replying to my answer.
    – Colin Fine
    Oct 14, 2021 at 9:36
  • I have edited my answer, @AndyBonner
    – Colin Fine
    Oct 14, 2021 at 9:38
  • Oh, sorry!! And by the way, thank you for your help!
    – Louisa
    Oct 14, 2021 at 10:21
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No, that isn't correct. Your sentence would be better without it. (And we normally "venture into" somewhere.) So "...they ventured into this bookshop to find refuge..."

Thus can mean As a result or consequence of this; therefore or in this way. (Lexico) You could say, "I walked into a tree, thus breaking my nose."

Yes, you can start a sentence with it: "I walked into the tree, broke my nose and was taken to hospital. Thus ended my holiday."

(Btw, you need a full stop after "in love with the place.")

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  • Thank you for your help. Therefore, it would be better to use "in order to" in this sentence? Would it be correct to separate it in two, like this: "The first time they ventured into this bookshop, in order to find refuge and protection from the rain lashing on cobblestones outside, Paul immediately fell in love with the place. As for John, he didn't want to leave it anymore."
    – Louisa
    Oct 13, 2021 at 22:42
  • You're welcome! Yes! "In order to" would be much better. Actually this would be even better: "The first time they ventured into this bookshop, seeking refuge from the rain lashing (down) on the cobblestones outside, Paul immediately fell in love with the place. As for John, he didn't want to leave it anymore." In the UK we usually say 'lashing down'. Maybe they don't where you are. And you need 'the' before 'cobblestones'. "In order to find refuge and protection" is a bit wordy, and refuge implies protection anyway. Oct 13, 2021 at 22:50
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    I see! It makes much more sense. The sentence is less wordy, indeed. I should have use "down" and "the" before "cobblestones" – my bad, I didn't notice the mistakes... Again, thank you for your help!!
    – Louisa
    Oct 13, 2021 at 22:57

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