<about preparing dinner> she couldn't be expected to wait ()

park sang joon

Senior Member
The narrator recalls his adolescence.
He is beginning a new life as an apprentice in Doctors' Commons at London.
The narrator's Steerforth is to come over with his friends to dinner.
Mrs. Crupp is the masteress of his apartment.

When he was gone, I rang for Mrs. Crupp, and acquainted her with my desperate design. Mrs Crupp said, in the first place, of course it was well-known she couldn't be expected to wait, but she know a handy young man, who she thought could be prevailed upon to do it, and whose terms would be five shillings, and what I pleased.
[David Copperfield by Charles Dickens]
I'd like to know why it is "wait," not "wait on."
Thank you in advance for your help.
  • Barque

    Senior Member
    It's being used intransitively.

    She's referring to the idea in general of waiting on people, which she's not willing to do, and not specifically to waiting on DC and his guests.

    Mrs. Crupp is the masteress of his apartment.
    Mrs. Crupp is his landlady.
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