Questions tagged [literature]

Questions citing excerpts from works of literature.

Filter by
Sorted by
Tagged with
0
votes
1answer
35 views

F. Scott Fitzgerald's “Nor Does He Spin” subheading title, what does he mean by spinning?

In his book The Beautiful and Damned one of the subheadings of Chapter 1 is "Nor Does He Spin." There is no specific reference to the title (I think) within this section. So what did Fitzgerald mean ...
0
votes
1answer
36 views

What are the differences between practical implications, insightful implications, and limitations of a research study?

A reviewer asked me in three separate questions about each of these sections. However, I do not understand the differences between practical implications, insightful implications, and limitations of a ...
0
votes
0answers
39 views

What does the author mean here by referring to this character as 'the possibility and the promise'?

So I've come across this strange phrase in a novel I've been reading. "Jim was splashing water on the girls. He was the Water God and they loved him. He was the possibility and the promise. He was ...
1
vote
3answers
74 views

Grammar question from A Christmas Carol: meaning of “quite as well that — as have”?

I am reading A Christmas Carol by Charles Dickens and finally reached the last few pages, but I am stuck with the following paragraph. Scrooge was better than his word. He did it all, and ...
0
votes
1answer
29 views

Definition of 'cut out in'

I was reading 'The Hound of the Baskervilles' for the sake of improving my English and have not found the definition of the phrasal verb in bold: ‘I don’t know much about the tariff and things of ...
0
votes
1answer
26 views

Could anyone explain me the meaning of the sentence?

I can't understand the sentence in "The Innocence of Father Brown". Could anybody explain the meaning of it? It was he who had kept up an unaccountable and close correspondence with a young lady ...
0
votes
1answer
48 views

Hitchens' quote “the cosmos barely bothers to return the reply: why not?” [closed]

To the dumb question "Why me?" the cosmos barely bothers to return the reply: why not?” I just wanted to know your opinion on what Hitchens means by this. Does he imply everyone is equal before ...
0
votes
0answers
26 views

Is this an antithesis?

I am learning English and there are a couple of things that confuse me, like antithesis. I am reading 'The Story of an Hour' by Kate chopin and I wanted to know if this sentence was an antithesis. "...
1
vote
1answer
237 views

What is, or was the meaning of “oncommon”?

In Dickens' David Copperfield, there is an exchange between David and Mr Pegotty who arrives with his nephew Ham to visit him at school. It runs as follows: "Do you know how mama is, Mr Peggotty? I ...
0
votes
0answers
29 views

Is “I was heard” correct to write?

I've just started to translate BLOOD by Maggie Gee into my native language (Vietnamese). In the very first paragraphs of the book, I came across a difficult line, which reads Dad is dead, and I’ve ...
27
votes
9answers
6k views

Is there a pessimistic counterpart to the term “Pollyanna”?

The term "Pollyanna" came into the lexicon with the 1913 publication of Pollyanna, a novel by Eleanor H. Porter. The name has come to mean A person regarded as being foolishly or blindly optimistic....
-1
votes
1answer
33 views

Is the poetic phrase “Time stumbled and fell” considered a Juxtaposition? [closed]

In the poem "People on the Bridge" written by Wislawa Szymborksa (Translated by Joanna Trzceiak) the phrase "Time stumbled and fell" is used. Is this an example of a juxtaposition used by the poet?
1
vote
2answers
77 views

Ambiguous line from Browning's My Last Duchess [closed]

A heart – how shall I say? – too soon made glad, Too easily impressed: she liked whate’er She looked on, and her looks went everywhere. Sir, ‘twas all one! My favor at her breast, ...
3
votes
1answer
147 views

A single word for the most important person in one's life

The concept of a "Lebensmensch" plays a dominant role in Thomas Bernhard's works. At Wikipedia one reads that »Lebensmensch [is] a predominantly Austrian term [...] which refers to the most ...
0
votes
1answer
56 views

Difference between drawn and haggard [closed]

In the novel Rage of Angels by Sidney Sheldon, we read: She watched Adam now as he sat at his desk looking drawn and haggard. Dictionaries such as Oxford and Cambridge are showing the same or ...
0
votes
1answer
90 views

Why is the verb for “pretexts … and necessity … was exposed” used in the singular in this quotation? [closed]

In the following context, a quote from The Three Musketeers, shouldn’t it be were exposed? The pretexts about the cold and the necessity for the cloak was exposed. Or is was here referring just ...
2
votes
1answer
49 views

Please help me make sense of the grammar of this line

I am reading The Divine Comedy (Longfellow Translation), and ran into a sentence: [Not very far as yet our way had gone This side the summit], when I saw a fire That overcame a hemisphere of ...
1
vote
2answers
54 views

“Goods” or “gods” in The Awakening

In Chapter 17 of The Awakening by Kate Chopin, my text said He greatly valued his possessions, chiefly because they were his, and derived genuine pleasure from contemplating a painting, a ...
3
votes
1answer
80 views

What literary or author's style is this writer channeling?

In The Washington Post, Alexandra Petri wrote a satirical opinion piece criticizing anti-abortion laws in the United States by parodically lamenting the routine death of spermatazoa. I was struck by ...
1
vote
1answer
115 views

What is it called when you begin to exhibit similar personality traits as someone close to you?

Especially someone you live with, whether that be a partner, roommate, family, etc. I feel like there’s a psychological term for this. Like how we pick up little quirks in passing, or how the ...
1
vote
2answers
117 views

Literary term for when the author purposely doesn't describe something so that the audience is left to imagine it

I read an article the other day with this term, but I can't for the life of me remember what it is. Essentially, the vaguely describes/hints at something, but the reader is never made aware of the ...
-1
votes
1answer
455 views

What is the meaning of “a personal odyssey of the self”? [closed]

I was reading the book The Monk Who Sold His Ferrari which has the following sentence: He describes his time in this far-away land as a personal odyssey of the self. What does this sentence mean?
1
vote
0answers
48 views

What's the origin of the phrase “fatal dower”?

I recently ran across the phrase "Constantine's fatal dower," which sounded like a quotation, so I googled it. The specific reference to Constantine that started my quest comes from Canto XIX of ...
1
vote
2answers
79 views

What does “the apricot and black humid evening” mean? [closed]

Mes fenêtres! Hanging above blotched sunset and welling night, grinding my teeth, I would crowd all the demons of my desire against the railing of a throbbing balcony: it would be ready to take off ...
-1
votes
1answer
56 views

Which word can replace “provision” in this excerpt from Pride and Prejudice?

The sentence is: "Without thinking highly either of men or of matrimony, marriage had always been her object; it was the only honourable provision for well-educated young women of small fortune, and ...
2
votes
1answer
77 views

Meaning of “sleep” and “shave it through on the grub”

I read in "The White Silent" of Jack London and see this sentence 'Only one day. We can shave it through on the grub, and I might knock over a moose.' I do not understand meaning of 'we can ...
1
vote
1answer
48 views

Is there a literary device to show how a character or interactions with a character changes as the story goes on?

I'm trying to break down Wilfred Owen's Disabled, and I feel like there should be a device for describing his condition before and after the war. Girls treat him so differently. He used to be a ...
1
vote
1answer
602 views

What's a word to describe someone who loves to solve puzzles and mysteries? [duplicate]

One of my friends loves puzzles-jigsaw, logic, pretty much anything. He is also addicted to reading murder mysteries and tries to figure out who killed the guy. Basically, he enjoys working things out ...
0
votes
1answer
56 views

What is “monarchs of the stage”?

Joseph Conrad, "Karain, a Memory": His smallest acts were prepared and unexpected, his speeches grave, his sentences ominous like hints and complicated like arabesques. He was treated with a solemn ...
17
votes
6answers
7k views

“I you already know”: is this proper English?

I found this sentence in Terry Pratchett's "Interesting Times": (*) “Great wizard,” said Butterfly, bowing. “I you already know, but these two are Lotus Blossom and Three Yoked Oxen, other members ...
20
votes
3answers
4k views

What is the meaning of “you has the wind of me”?

I ran into this excerpt from the book Treasure Island by Robert Louis Stevenson: I can see, can't I? I've tried my fling, I have, and I've lost, and it's you has the wind of me. Source: Google ...
3
votes
1answer
96 views

What is candlebox? No info in the dictionaries

Joseph Conrad, "Youth": In two days it blew a gale. The Judea, hove to, wallowed on the Atlantic like an old candle-box. It might appear to be a strange question, but see for yourself: no results ...
3
votes
1answer
125 views

What does Scandinavian Home mean? Late XIX, early XX century. Great Britain

Joseph Conrad, "The Nigger Of The "Narcissus": A Tale Of The Forecastle": the two young Norwegians looked tidy, meek, and altogether of a promising material for the kind ladies who patronise the ...
4
votes
1answer
172 views

What is “taytottlers”?

Joseph Conrad, "The Nigger Of The "Narcissus: A Tale Of The Forecastle": Donkin gulped greedily, glaring over the rim. Belfast made us laugh when with grimacing mouth he shouted:—“Pass it this way. ...
2
votes
2answers
74 views

Subject/Object Confusion in The Silmarillion [duplicate]

In Tolkein's "The Silmarillion", page 216 of the chapter "Of Túrin Turambar", the following is written: "[...] this Wildman was the Mormegil of Nargothrond, whom rumour said was the son of Húrin ...
0
votes
1answer
176 views

What did Jane Austen mean by “employ for captivation”?

I read the phrase employ for captivation in Jane Austen’s 1813 Regency novel, Pride and Prejudice: “Undoubtedly,” replied Darcy, to whom this remark was chiefly addressed, “there is a meanness in ...
1
vote
3answers
68 views

Looking for a well-known refrain or proverb indicating that some big trouble has just started

I am translating into English a famous refrain from Spanish, Ahí fue Troya. That means something like Then a big trouble started. I am looking for some correspondingly recognizable refrain I can ...
0
votes
1answer
53 views

What is the meaning of this qoute?

What is the meaning of this quote? Thus, from the war of nature, from famine and death, the most exalted object which we are capable of conceiving, namely, the production of the higher animals, ...
0
votes
2answers
114 views

Definition, Origin, and Extent of “Matter” as a title in Literature

Why was "Matter" chosen for the Matter of Britain, the Matter of France and the Matter of Rome? What would the exact definition of "Matter" be in this instance? Written/Printed Material, or a Theme/...
0
votes
1answer
84 views

Meaning of this sentence in Lolita? [closed]

Here is the paragraph from Vladimir Nabokov's Lolita- My task proved simpler than either of us had anticipated. Save for the correction of obvious solecisms and a careful suppression of a few ...
0
votes
1answer
49 views

What is the meaning of this sentence in Lolita?

Here is the paragraph from Vladimir Nabokov's Lolita:- My task proved simpler than either of us had anticipated. Save for the correction of obvious solecisms and a careful suppression of a few ...
0
votes
3answers
52 views

What does this quote mean and how do you define it? [closed]

“Better than to exaggerate, I have lessened in all things.” - La Relacíon
7
votes
2answers
956 views

What do “Sech” and “Vich” mean in this sentence?

I am reading a book on life lessons, and the author quotes one of Charles Dickens's characters, Sarah Gamp, from his novel, Martin Chuzzlewit: Sech is life. Vich likeways is the hend of all things....
-1
votes
1answer
100 views

what does “Let tomorrow wait its turn, today still has tonight on its side” mean? [closed]

Let tomorrow wait its turn, today still has tonight on its side. What does that mean? Source: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8fL8ddOqPjk&feature=youtu.be
1
vote
0answers
43 views

As for you, Frodo, in so far as lies in me

It's from The Lord of the Rings: ‘Then I will declare my doom,’ said Faramir. ‘As for you, Frodo, in so far as lies in me under higher authority, I declare you free in the realm of Gondor to ...
0
votes
2answers
443 views

In a Tale of Two Cities, Dickens says “in short, the period was so far like the present period” in the first paragraph of the first chapter [closed]

What does he mean? Does he mean that the periods were very different, or very similar?
8
votes
3answers
2k views

Can't make sense of a paragraph from Lovecraft

I decided to start reading some work of Lovecraft.  Reading The Beast in the Cave, I got stuck at the first paragraph I encountered: The horrible conclusion which had been gradually obtruding ...
13
votes
3answers
2k views

What does “rhumatis” mean?

I know that Uncle Tom's Cabin is full of neologisms, and I try my best to grit my teeth and infer as best I can without racing down every such rabbit hole that presents itself, but with rhumatis, for ...
0
votes
1answer
84 views

Meter and rhythm in Poetry [closed]

Why is poetry called a 'literature in metrical form' or 'a composition forming rhythmic lines'?
24
votes
3answers
6k views

What does “FRANCE TO PLACE” mean?

From Pat Hobby, Putative Father by F. Scott Fitzgerald: He searched the orange pages frantically. Below the form sheets, the past performances, the endless oracles for endless racetracks, his eye ...

1
2 3 4 5 6