individually and collectively

Schlabberlatz

Senior Member
German - Germany
Probably it’s simple, but I’m afraid it may be deceptively simple. There are so many mathematical puns in this story that I think there may be a pun here that I don’t get:
[…] was it not a thing of joy to find seventy young men who, individually and collectively, preferred x to XX; who had rather differentiate than dissipate; and for whom the limbs of the heavenly bodies had more attractions than those of earthly stars upon the spectacular stage? The Tachypomp
What do you think?
 
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  • MuttQuad

    Senior Member
    English - AmE
    I don't see any pun. What I do see is a duplication of meaning, probably for stylistic reasons or emphasis. It clearly says that each of the seventy, as well as the seventy as a group, had rather...

    Naturally if each one had the same attitude, then the group could be said to have that attitude too.
     

    Linkway

    Senior Member
    British English
    Schlabberlatz, could you please edit your link so that it provides a source that we can access? (Not your desktop computer!)

    I think there is a play on words here -

    "I was the only poor mathematician in an exceptionally mathematical
    class. The old gentleman sought the lecture-room every morning with
    eagerness, and left it reluctantly. For was it not a thing of joy to
    find seventy young men who, individually and collectively, preferred x
    to XX
    ; who had rather differentiate than dissipate; and for whom the
    limbs of the heavenly bodies had more attractions than those of
    earthly stars
    upon the spectacular stage?"
    (Source: The Tachypomp, http://gutenberg.net.au/ebooks06/0602521.txt )

    The context is a maths lecturer who is delighted with his students who:

    --- prefer the x of algebraic equations than the XX of sexual interests;

    --- would rather do mathematical differentiation than physical dissipation;

    --- were more attracted to the forms of heavenly bodies rather than of earthly stars of TV and film.


     
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