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He, therefore, in proposing a great variety of employments, in manufactures or the care of plants and animals, allows for one third of women as likely to have a taste for masculine pursuits, one third of men for feminine.

I don't understand the usage of "as" at the end of this sentence; is it correct? Does “as” mean “owing to” here?

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  • 2
    I understand it as something like "to be".
    – Esther
    Commented Aug 16, 2022 at 3:01
  • 2
    Or possibly short for "as being".
    – Peter
    Commented Aug 16, 2022 at 3:27
  • Either comment should be argued as an answer, not placed as comment.
    – Anton
    Commented Aug 16, 2022 at 6:25
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    As in many uses is equivalent to a form of be; indeed, that may be a source. Commented Aug 16, 2022 at 14:39
  • What is this from and when was it written? It seems like an archaic use, although I might be getting that from the notions of masculine and feminine pursuits.
    – Barmar
    Commented Aug 18, 2022 at 22:17

1 Answer 1

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First, undoing the conjunction reduction, this sentence is:

[He] allows for one third of women as likely to have a taste for masculine pursuits, and he allows for one third of men as likely to have a taste for feminine pursuits.

As Huddleston & Pullum (2002) note, there is a "relatively unusual" construction" in which a verb takes a prepositional phrase with an ordinary object followed by a prepositional phrase with a predicative complement (p. 277, 280). One example of this is the verb think, as in "I think of it as indispensable."

Only a few verbs allow this construction; Huddleston & Pullum don't list "allow" as one of them. But I suspect that, when this book was written, allow could be used in this way; of course the sentence just means:

[He] allows that one third of women are likely to have a taste for masculine pursuits, and he allows that one third of men are likely to have a taste for feminine pursuits.

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