depth within depth of grey, hopeless inertia ....

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longxianchen

Senior Member
chinese
Hi,
Here are some words from the novel Lady Chatterley's Lover( para.113) by Lawrence(the University of Adelaide,here):

In the wood all was utterly inert and motionless, only great drops fell from the bare boughs, with a hollow little crash. For the rest, among the old trees was depth within depth of grey, hopeless inertia, silence, nothingness.

Is "depth with depth" a set phrase please? I failed to find it from any dictionaries. So could you tell me the meaning of it?
Thank you in advance
 
  • exgerman

    Senior Member
    NYC
    English but my first language was German
    When you get to the bottom of a depth, you find that there is a further depth beyond it.
    --- and so on when you get to the bottom of each depth.

    It's a picturesque way of saying "profoundly deep".
     

    exgerman

    Senior Member
    NYC
    English but my first language was German
    No, it's not a standard expression. But when Lawrence was writing, there used to be a similar expression ("wheels within wheels") which meant "extremely complicated"). So the pattern was available to Lawrence and his readers.
     
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