but altogether

park sang joon

Senior Member
Korean
The protagonist, Philip moved in with his uncle Mr. Carey, the Vicar of Blackstable after his mother's death.

............................................
he did not calculate the pros and cons of an action, the benefits which must befall him if he did it, the harm which might result from the omission; but his whole being was urged on irresistibly. He did not act with a part of himself but altogether. The power that possessed him seemed to have nothing to do with reason: all that reason did was to point out the methods of obtaining what his whole soul was striving for.
[Of Human Bondage by Somerset Maugham]
I'd like to know if "but altogether" means "if not altogether."
Thank you in advance for your help.
 
  • dojibear

    Senior Member
    English - Northeast US
    I think the meaning is different (if I understand your phrasing).

    1. (original) He did not act with a part of himself but altogether.

    The "but altogether" is a contrasting phrase. It means the exact opposite of what the author just said he did not do. I would at least put a comma before it:

    2. He did not act with a part of himself, but altogether.

    I might even add words to make the contrast clearer:

    3. He did not act with only a part of himself, but instead he acted altogether.
     
    < Previous | Next >
    Top