in a gently way that would have put me at my ease, <if anything could.>

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park sang joon

Senior Member
Korean
The narrator recalls his childhood.
Mr. Wickfield is the master of his boarding house, one of his grand aunt's friends, and a lawyer.
He and the narrator came to the school he is newly going to.

One Adams, who was the head-boy, then stepped out of his place and welcomed me. He looked like a young clergy-man, in his white cravat, but he was very affable and good-humoured, and he showed me my place, and presented me to the masters, in a gently way that would have put me at my ease, if anything could.
[David Copperfield by Charles Dickens]
I'd like to know why it is "if anything could," not "if anything.
Thank you in advance for your help.
 
  • Copyright

    Senior Member
    American English
    Expanded meaning:
    ... in a gently way that would have put me at my ease, if anything could (have put me at my ease).
     
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