placed on the axis

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RajuMV

Senior Member
Malayalam
Friends, here is a sentence: He conceived of it as a spinning dictionary that a person placed on the axis could operate by means of a lever, so that in very few hours there would pass before his eyes the notions most necessary for life.
Source:the novel, One Hundred Years of Solitude.
In the sentence, is the person or the spinning dictionary placed on the axis? I think it is the person. But in a book translated in our mother tongue it is the spinning dictionary. Please clarify.

Thanks a lot in anticipation:)
 
  • sdgraham

    Senior Member
    USA English
    I see your problem.

    It would help immensely to know what "it" might be.

    Was your book in your native tongue translated from García Márquez's original Spanish? That might be a clue.
     

    Franco-filly

    Senior Member
    English - Southern England
    To me it's both! As I understand it the dictionary rotates around an axis but, presumably as it's rather heavy (?), it needs a person sitting on its axis to enable it to operate.
     
    Last edited:

    RajuMV

    Senior Member
    Malayalam
    Hello sdgraham, it is The artifact was based on the possibility of reviewing every morning, from beginning to end, the totality of knowledge acquired during one's life. The translation must have been from english version.
     

    sdgraham

    Senior Member
    USA English
    Thanks, RajuMV

    Given that anything that "spins" must have an axis, so I read it as "a person placed on the axis of a spinning dictionary" and since you explained it as being figurative, that seems to make sense.
     
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