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My Country 'Tis of Thee

Discussion in 'English Only' started by NickJunior, Jun 19, 2009.

  1. NickJunior Senior Member

    Amérique du Nord
    cambodgien
    Hi,
    What is another way to paraphrase the song title "My Country "Tis of Thee"? Is it acceptable to say, It is you my country?
     
  2. UUBiker Senior Member

    Arlington, Virignia
    United States, English
    No.

    "My country 'tis of thee" should be modernized as "My country, it is of you," in the sense of "My country, it is about you," sweet land of liberty, to thee (i.e., to you) I sing."

    Or to paraphrase-- "My country, sweet land of liberty, it is about you that I sing to you."
     
  3. mplsray Senior Member

    The lyrics begin:

    This means, in more modern language:

    The lyrics contain a redundancy, as you can see, and in more modern punctuation there would be a comma after "country." In any case, my translation can be used as the paraphrase of the title: "My Country, It is of You."
     
  4. UUBiker Senior Member

    Arlington, Virignia
    United States, English
    Mpls has the last line right-- I do not.
     
  5. NickJunior Senior Member

    Amérique du Nord
    cambodgien
    Thanks to UUBiker and Mplsray for helping me understand the title of the song. May I ask what does "sweet" refer to? I know it is not about taste. Am I correct to understand that the term sweet in the song refer to the much love for the country?
     
  6. UUBiker Senior Member

    Arlington, Virignia
    United States, English
    Yes, here I would say that "sweet" means "affectionate" or "loving," with the somewhat implicit idea that the affection and love go both ways.
     
  7. mplsray Senior Member

    I'd say that this definition of sweet, from the Merriam-Webster Online Dictionary, is the one being used in the song:

    "3 : much loved : DEAR"
     

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