...all absorbing one of his own health

*cat*

Senior Member
Slovene
Hello!

I need help with the following:
(talking about a man who's a hypochondriac - that means that he's a patient with imaginary symptoms and ailments)
Blest if I think there’s much wrong with him.”
Oh well, everybody had to have some hobby. Timothy’s hobby was the all
absorbing one of his own health
. Was Mrs. Timothy taken in?


Can you please explain "expressions" colored green? I don't understand...

Thank you.
 
  • Trisia

    Senior Member
    Romanian
    I could explain the first two, I think:

    #1. Blest = blessed. It's also used as a sort of euphemism for "cursed," "dammned" (He wants that? Well, I'll be... if I give it to him!)

    #2. I'll paraphrase it: "We all need a hobby. Timothy's hobby was his health, and this absorbed him completely" (he only cared about it and almost nothing else)

    #3. Was Mrs. Timothy taken in? I'm not sure, but I suppose he asks if the wife has also begun to concern herself with health issues.
    (Unless it refers to something else, such as the arrest of Mrs. Timothy, or I don't know what)
     

    nichec

    Senior Member
    Chinese(Taiwan)/English(AE)
    I could explain the first two, I think:

    #1. Blest = blessed. It's also used as a sort of euphemism for "cursed," "dammned" (He wants that? Well, I'll be... if I give it to him!)

    #2. I'll paraphrase it: "We all need a hobby. Timothy's hobby was his health, and this absorbed him completely" (he only cared about it and almost nothing else)

    #3. Was Mrs. Timothy taken in? I'm not sure, but I suppose he asks if the wife has also begun to concern herself with health issues.
    (Unless it refers to something else, such as the arrest of Mrs. Timothy, or I don't know what)
    Agreed :thumbsup:

    The expression "taken in" bears too many meanings, without more context, I don't know for sure which can be the right one either.

    111.take in,

    a.to permit to enter; admit.
    b.to alter (an article of clothing) so as to make smaller.
    c.to provide lodging for.
    d.to include; encompass.
    e.to grasp the meaning of; comprehend.
    f.to deceive; trick; cheat.
    g.to observe; notice.
    h.to visit or attend: to take in a show.
    i.to furl (a sail).
    j.to receive as proceeds, as from business activity.
    k.Chiefly British. to subscribe to: to take in a magazine.

    Source: http://dictionary.reference.com/browse/take%20in
     

    nichec

    Senior Member
    Chinese(Taiwan)/English(AE)
    Hello!

    I need help with the following:
    (talking about a man who's a hypochondriac - that means that he's a patient with imaginary symptoms and ailments)
    Blest if I think there’s much wrong with him.”
    Oh well, everybody had to have some hobby. Timothy’s hobby was the all
    absorbing one of his own health. Was Mrs. Timothy taken in?

    Can you please explain "expressions" colored green? I don't understand...

    Thank you.
    Try this:

    Blest if I think there's much wrong with him.

    I will be damned if I think he's really ill. (I know he's not ill at all)

    Timothy's hobby was the all absorbing one of his own health.

    Timonthy's hobby was his own health, and it's an "all absorbing one". (that's why he's "imagining" all these symptoms)


    I think you are supposed to ask one question per thread, but still .......... :)
     

    *cat*

    Senior Member
    Slovene
    Thank you all!

    It's a lot clearer now. But I'm still confused with "taken in". It continues with:
    "Was Mrs. Tim taken in? Probably not - but women never admitted that sort of thing."

    So, does he asks himself (third person) if she knew there's nothing wrong with her husband or if she noticed this or ...?

    :confused:
     

    nichec

    Senior Member
    Chinese(Taiwan)/English(AE)
    Thank you all!

    It's a lot clearer now. But I'm still confused with "taken in". It continues with:
    "Was Mrs. Tim taken in? Probably not - but women never admitted that sort of thing."

    So, does he asks himself (third person) if she knew there's nothing wrong with her husband or if she noticed this or ...?

    :confused:
    Hmmm.................Tricky...............

    I am not sure, probably "f" would work in your context?
     

    Thomas Tompion

    Senior Member
    English - England
    Thank you all!

    It's a lot clearer now. But I'm still confused with "taken in". It continues with:
    "Was Mrs. Tim taken in? Probably not - but women never admitted that sort of thing."

    So, does he asks himself (third person) if she knew there's nothing wrong with her husband or if she noticed this or ...?

    :confused:
    Taken in here means misled. The suggestion seems to be that he gives poor health as an explanation for indifferent sexual performance.
     

    *cat*

    Senior Member
    Slovene
    nichec,
    Hmmm.................Tricky...............
    I am not sure, probably "f" would work in your context?
    What do you mean with "f" ? :confused:


    Thomas Tompion,
    Taken in here means misled. The suggestion seems to be that he gives poor health as an explanation for indifferent sexual performance.
    Hm... Indifferent sexual performance? I don't think so, but... Interesting suggestion. :)
     

    nichec

    Senior Member
    Chinese(Taiwan)/English(AE)
    nichec,
    What do you mean with "f" ? :confused:


    Thomas Tompion,
    Hm... Indifferent sexual performance? I don't think so, but... Interesting suggestion. :)
    Oh, I am sorry, in my post #3, f.to deceive; trick; cheat.

    By the way, TT is a well-respected member here, and he's a very knowledgeable man, but he tends to interpret things in a "sexual" way, so don't listen to him :D (I am just kidding, of course, TT's posts are among the best here)
     

    Thomas Tompion

    Senior Member
    English - England
    Perhaps I was being over-simple.

    What do you think women never admitted that sort of thing means? If I'm right, the alternative was that he didn't find his wife attractive, and that must be a hard thing for a woman to admit.

    We've not been given much context. Was Mrs Tim taken in? She wouldn't have been if her husband's health problems were real - you can't be taken in by something which is true.

    I think, on the slender evidence at our disposal, my explanation hangs together. This is not to say it's not completely wrong - we'd need more context to judge that.
     

    *cat*

    Senior Member
    Slovene
    Thomas Tompion,
    here's the whole context:
    "His eyes went on to Mrs. Timothy. She’d always been a good
    devoted wife to Timothy. Looking after his health, fussing over him - fussing
    over him a bit too much, probably. Was there really anything the matter with
    Timothy? Just a hypochondriac, Mr. Entwhistle suspected. Richard
    had suspected so, too. “Weak chest, of course, when he was a
    boy,” he had said. “But blest if I think there’s much wrong with him now.”
    Oh well, everybody had to have some hobby. Timothy’s hobby was the all
    absorbing one of his own health. Was Mrs. Tim taken in? Probably not - but
    women never admitted that sort of thing."
     

    Thomas Tompion

    Senior Member
    English - England
    Thomas Tompion,
    here's the whole context:
    Many thanks for this, cat. But it stops just where it might tell us the answer. Where does the quote come from? After the Funeral by Agatha Christie. I've not read it.

    A further reason for my taking what some of you consider a heterodox view of this is that the writing is clearly covert: there's something being hinted at. When writers do that it's often because they want you to read a sexual explanation into their words, something in those days they certainly wouldn't want to spell out.
     

    Thomas Tompion

    Senior Member
    English - England
    Another possibility (since this is a work of detective fiction): Timothy may be using his hypochondria as a cover. Was Mrs Tim taken in? - caused to think that his obsession with his health would have prevented him planning and committing a murder?
     

    nichec

    Senior Member
    Chinese(Taiwan)/English(AE)
    Hi, TT, would you consider the possibility of interpreting "Was Mrs.Tim taken in?" as "Was Mrs. Tim fooled?"?
     
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