wed to

veracity

Senior Member
Hi,

"Houseman was especially impressed by Welles' youth, wed to what appeared to be an overabundant creative certainty and drive."

From Wkikipedia - Orson Welles.

I can't understand what "wed to" here means. Is it passive?
"Houseman was wed to..."?
"Welles was wed to..." or "Welles wed to.."?

Can you rephrase this sentence for me? Can you make it understandable?

Thanks.
 
  • Dimcl

    Senior Member
    Canadian English
    "wed to" could be replaced by "married to" or "connected to". It means that Welles' youth was connected to his creativity and drive. You could say "Houseman was especially impressed by Welles' youth which was connected to what appeared to be an overabundant creative certainty and drive."

    This is just an off-the-cuff rephrasing. Someone else may well come up with another.
     

    se16teddy

    Senior Member
    English - England
    Like Dimcl, I think that the author is using wed as a past participle of the verb to wed. The Oxford English Dictionary describes this participle as a 'rare' alternative to wedded. The Dictionary's gives some examples of this usage: two from 1400, one from 1440 and one from 1823.

    Like Dimcl, I think the author is using wed to mean connected. I am not familiar with this usage: nor is the Dictionary.
     

    Dimcl

    Senior Member
    Canadian English
    Like Dimcl, I think the author is using wed to mean connected. I am not familiar with this usage: nor is the Dictionary.
    Actually, it's not at all rare, SE16teddy.:) If you Google "wed to" and manage to avoid all the sites containing mention of celebrity weddings :)eek:), you will find many uses of "wed to" in this context.
     

    ewie

    Senior Member
    English English
    Yes, I like NZF's combined with.
    If you live in the North of England for more than 30 seconds you'll hear folk saying:
    When are they getting wed? It's as common as (erm) muck.
     

    se16teddy

    Senior Member
    English - England
    Thanks, Dimcl and Ewie. I think I misunderstood the OED entry. I too am familiar with They were wed... The Dictionary seems to be making a distinction, which I don't really understand, between wed, ppl. a. (past participle and adjective), which the Dictionary pronounces is rare, and (the common) wed as as an alternative to wedded as the regular past participle of the verb wed.

    I am still not very clear why the writer chose to use a marriage metaphor in respect of Welles' youth and drive.
     

    JamesM

    Senior Member
    Thanks, Dimcl and Ewie. I think I misunderstood the OED entry. I too am familiar with They were wed... The Dictionary seems to be making a distinction, which I don't really understand, between wed, ppl. a. (past participle and adjective), which the Dictionary pronounces is rare, and (the common) wed as as an alternative to wedded as the regular past participle of the verb wed.
    I'm not sure what the "past participle and adjective" means in the dictionary entry, but "they lived together in wed bliss" would sound very strange to me (I'd expect "wedded bliss"), while "they were wed on the 4th of July" does not.
     
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