the sound alternately to shimmer and stun

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Throughout the six hours required, there was constant exhortation on the part of Dr. Reiner to the men in the orchestra "to play with glow, not perspiration." The performance had to be supple and sensuous, the sound alternately to shimmer and stun, with clarity in its definition, sonority and intensity in its climax. It is particulary noteworthy that the final movement in this recording is a complete performance, without benefit of splicing, an orchestral achievement rarely equaled.

I have a question about the second sentence of this essay on a orchestral recording session in 1960 written by its recording producer.

the sound alternately to shimmer and stun,
I think "had" may be omitted between "alternately" and "to", to avoid repetition. But, if so, I wonder why the transitive verb "stun" lacks an object. Is a verb "stun" often used as an intransitive verb?

Thanks in advance.
  • owlman5

    Senior Member
    This is an example of a writer using a transitive verb without a direct object. I run into such experiments more often in writing than I hear them in speech. The object here is implied: "the audience" or "the listener". You can hear and read other verbs being used this way, often in language about performances of one kind or another:

    The movie entertains more than it shocks. = The movie entertains people more than it shocks them.
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