"and scolded in the oak trees. Then from the pole shed"

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Lunaya

Senior Member
French
Hi!
A bit of a problem with "from":
this is an extract from The Antelope Wife (Louise Erdrich), which describes the task of a young girl and her teacher in the girl's property. They have to follow guinea fowl and catch them.
It's said, about the animals

"furious with shrill guinea pride, they acted as house watchdogs and scolded in the oak trees. Then from the pole shed where they wintered" :

what I understand is that the guinea fowl behave as dogs who protects a house, that is, they hide behind trees and scold in order to frighten the intruders, and when they go back to their shelter they are still scolding.
I'm really not sure about that, can someone help?

Thanks in advance
lunaya
 
  • Fabulist

    Banned
    American English
    Unless you forgot to hit the shift key on "furious," the first sentence is incomplete.

    The guinea fowl were not hiding behind the oak trees, they were perching in them, making the noises or calls that guinea fowl use to warn others of their species of danger, predators, intruders, etc. From the oak trees they could fly to their pole shed. Although it is not explicitly stated, I must infer that they then perched on the roof of the shed and continued their "scolding."

    "Then from the pole shed where they wintered" is not a complete sentence; the rest of the sentence might provide more explanation. I would expect ". . . where they wintered" to be followed by a description of what they did "from the pole shed." For example, the full sentence might be something like "Then from the pole shed where they wintered, their shrieks continued."
     

    Lunaya

    Senior Member
    French
    well, thanks very much, it's clearer. But I'm afraid the sentence is so strange that I've quoted everything and there's nth after "pole shed".

    Precisely it is "Fat, speckled, furious with shrill guinea pride, they acted as house watchdogs and scolded in the oak trees. Then from the pole shed where they wintered."

    but I suppose I should understand "they scolded in the trees and then they continued on the pole shed"....so it works!

    thanks a lot!
     

    Fabulist

    Banned
    American English
    Well, perhaps part of your problem is the author's: "Then . . . wintered" is a sentence fragment. It could be incorporated into the preceding sentence with a little editing:
    Fat, speckled, furious with shrill guinea pride, they acted as house watchdogs and scolded first in the oak trees, then from the pole shed where they wintered.
    It's just possible that the typesetter made an error and converted "trees, then . . ." into "trees. Then . . ."
     

    se16teddy

    Senior Member
    English - England
    The second sentence has suffered ellipsis of its subject and verb, which are understood as repeated from the preceding sentence. In full, the second sentence would be: Then they (acted as house watchdogs and) scolded from the pole shed where they wintered".
     
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