. . .my mind was never in a holier frame than while I gazed on that . . .

shiness

Senior Member
Korean, South Korea.
1. And I partook of the infinite calm in which she lay: my mind was never in a holier frame than while I gazed on that untroubled image of Divine rest.


2. I don't know if it be a peculiarity in me, but I am seldom otherwise than happy while watching in the chamber of death, should no frenzied or despairing mourner share the duty with me.



-Quoted from chapter 16 in 'Wuthering Heights'-


Hi.

Would anyone tell me whether or not the above quotations, specially where I underlined, can be regarded as modern written English?
I'd like to confirm if they were written in sort of old-fashioned way.
Because I thought they were, when I first beheld them, though I could comprehend them with reading back and forth..several times.
 
  • Trinibeens

    Senior Member
    NYC
    U.S. English
    Would anyone tell me whether or not the above quotations, specially where I underlined, can be regarded as modern written English?
    I'd like to confirm if they were written in sort of old-fashioned way.
    Because I thought they were, when I first beheld them, though I could comprehend them with reading back and forth..several times.
    My answer to you would depend upon what your definition of "modern" English is. If you're asking if today's writers still write like that, they don't. If you're asking if people still talk like that, none that I've ever heard, if they're not on a stage, or reciting.

    Wuthering Heights was written quite a long time ago, in terms of the evolution of the language. I'm a native English speaker and it's difficult to 'wrap my head around' some of those phrases. Keep going though, it's a good book! :)
     

    shiness

    Senior Member
    Korean, South Korea.
    Oh I see, yes you are right I was asking whether Today's writers still write like that or not.

    If they wound't do it that way, how would one rephrase Option # 1?
    If you were given an opportunity? Could you do it for me?

    Thanks for such a quick answer.
     

    Trinibeens

    Senior Member
    NYC
    U.S. English
    Oh I see, yes you are right I was asking whether Today's writers still write like that or not.

    If they wound't do it that way, how would one rephrase Option # 1?
    If you were given an opportunity? Could you do it for me?
    I think I should prefer to do # 2, by your forgiveness: ;)

    2. I don't know if it be a peculiarity in me, but I am seldom otherwise than happy while watching in the chamber of death, should no frenzied or despairing mourner share the duty with me.

    I don't know if I'm peculiar, but I'm usually happy while watching over a coffin, as long as no wailing or weeping mourners are watching along with me.
     

    Elwintee

    Senior Member
    England English
    Oh I see, yes you are right I was asking whether Today's writers still write like that or not.

    If they wound't do it that way, how would one rephrase Option # 1?
    If you were given an opportunity? Could you do it for me?

    Thanks for such a quick answer.
    I'll have a go at option #1:

    1. And I partook of the infinite calm in which she lay: my mind was never in a holier frame than while I gazed on that untroubled image of Divine rest.

    1. And I shared in the infinite calm in which she lay: I was never in a holier frame of mind [= way of thinking] than when I gazed on that untroubled image of one at rest in God. [to rest in God = to be in heaven, secure in God's love]

    I'm not very pleased with my effort, I'm sure someone else will do better for you! :)
     

    se16teddy

    Senior Member
    English - England
    I was asking whether Today's writers still write like that or not.
    I suppose that late 20th and early 21st century writers tend to avoid the syntactictical complexity that is typical of novel writing from the first half of the nineteenth century. Perhaps we live in a more pressured age, when people lack the patience to unravel sentences like these; or perhaps the Brontes' readers were just more practised in leisure reading than most readers can be today.
     

    AngelEyes

    Senior Member
    English - United States
    Shiness,

    I feel like I just threw poop on the Mona Lisa. These words are so beautiful the way they were written. But this is the way I'd paraphrase them in today's AE:

    1. And I partook of the infinite calm in which she lay: my mind was never in a holier frame than while I gazed on that untroubled image of Divine rest.
    As I studied the total peacefulness in the way she lay there, I never felt more blessed than I did as I looked at the remnants of the tranquil aura of a soul who was now with God.


    2. I don't know if it be a peculiarity in me, but I am seldom otherwise than happy while watching in the chamber of death, should no frenzied or despairing mourner share the duty with me.
    Maybe it's just me, but I'm only comfortable paying my respects in a funeral home if I can be by myself, without some weepy, emotional mourner there in the room with me.


    AngelEyes
     
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