left for dead (object)

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Le cuistre

New Member
Hi all,

can we use the expression "Left for dead" for an object?

Context : a piece of work has been forgotten for a long time and brought back to life while no one remembered it.

As in : "The book of X was left for dead for a long time until Y revived it by citing a passage supporting his own thesis..."

Thanks in advance.
  • YvDa

    Senior Member
    French - Belgium
    Je n'ai pas la réponse pour l'Anglais, mais il me semble bien qu'en Français ça ne s'emploie pas pour un objet ! On dira plutôt laissé à l'abandon ou resté dans l'oubli. (A moins qu'il ne s'agisse de l'expression resté lettre morte ?)

    S'il s'agit d'une licence littéraire, alors on devrait pouvoir la maintenir en Anglais.


    Moderando ma non troppo (French-English, CC Mod)
    English - USA
    Hello Le cuistre,

    No, left for dead does not seem to match an inanimate object (in this case, a piece of work). However, I could imagine saying "…was long-forgotten until someone discovered it again."

    There are certainly other ways to express this figurative meaning in English--others might have better suggestions.


    Senior Member
    British English
    In any other circumstance the ideal word would be "shelved". "Shelved", as an adjective, means suspended/postponed/put into mothballs/forgotten/put into storage. It is used figuratively "the project/idea was shelved". The problem with this particular example of a book, is that the word "shelved" is so closely associated to the word "book" that is causes confusion between the figurative and literal senses. (cf "the book was put on the shelf" and the programe was "shelved") "his book was long forgotten", "his book was largely/widely forgotten", " his book fell in popularity" or "his book fell into obscurity".
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