so whenever

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joh2001smile

Senior Member
Chinese
from Mutiny On The Bounty by John Boyne. The crew of 18 reached an island after rowing many days in the middle of the sea. The long-starved crew suffered a terrible diarrhea because of swallowing too water and berries. The narrator, servant lad of the captain was among them.
Here, whenever- clause is a adverbial clause of time, but which is the main part of the sentence?
Context:
It gave me some satisfaction that many of the other men were in a similar condition that day and it was obvious to all this was so whenever one of our party made a dash from the shore to the trees in seek of a little privacy to conduct our movements.
 
  • MichaelW

    Senior Member
    English (British)
    1) It gave me some satisfaction that many of the other men were in a similar condition that day (main part)
    2a) and it was obvious to all this was so (introducing 2b)
    2b) whenever one of our party made a dash from the shore to the trees in search of a little privacy to conduct our movements (explaining more about the main part)
     
    Last edited:

    jonjonsin

    Member
    English - American
    I'm not quite sure what your asking. If you want to know the main clause of the sentence

    "It gave me some satisfaction that many of the other men were in a similar condition that day and it was obvious to all this was so whenever one of our party made a dash from the shore to the trees in seek of a little privacy to conduct our movements."

    Let's taking out prepositional phrases, and subordinate clauses. I have:

    "It gave me some satisfaction and it was obvious."
     

    joh2001smile

    Senior Member
    Chinese
    Sorry, I did't make it clear enough.What confused me is the construction of the that- clause:
    'it was obvious to all this was so whenever one of our party made a dash from the shore to the trees in seek of a little privacy to conduct our movements.'
    Does it mean my situation fit others because they frequently made a dash ***?
     

    jonjonsin

    Member
    English - American
    Everyone is sick. Everyone is running from the beach to the trees for privacy. That's how everyone knows everyone is sick, because people are running to the trees.

    Does that help?
     

    MichaelW

    Senior Member
    English (British)
    1) I was happy that the other people were in the same situation as I was
    2a) as was obvious to everybody and not just to me
    2b) from the frequency with which they dashed to the treeline

    He is describing the behaviour of others in order to draw your attention away from his own difficulties, as if he were an impartial observer: he is admitting he had diahorrea (like everybody else) but wants you to pay attention to the comic effects it had on other people, not on himself.
     
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