with as little sanction of free will

Irelia20150604

Senior Member
Chinese
The quotation comes from Jane Eyre Chapter 23


Quotation: I said this almost involuntarily, and, with as little sanction of free will, my tears gushed out. I did not cry so as to be heard, however; I avoided sobbing. The thought of Mrs. O’Gall and Bitternutt Lodge struck cold to my heart; and colder the thought of all the brine and foam, destined, as it seemed, to rush between me and the master at whose side I now walked, and coldest the remembrance of the wider ocean—wealth, caste, custom intervened between me and what I naturally and inevitably loved.


Context: Mr. R said he would be soon married with Miss Ingram and therefore Jane must leave. He told Jane he had found a new job for her – “to undertake the education of the five daughters of Mrs. Dionysius O’Gall of Bitternutt Lodge, Connaught, Ireland”
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Hi everyone! I don’t quite understand the bold part. I’ve found the thread arm with as white a hand
[...] he waved a long, thin, delicate arm with as white a hand on the end of it, which fluttered like a silk flag [...]
(M. Peake; Gormenghast)

Is the author thus saying that his hand was as white as his arm?

Thanks.
Yes. He presumes that the reader will expect an arm to be white, but not necessarily a hand.
So I guess the part means “sanction of free will was as little as my tears”, i.e., “free will hardly allowed my tears to gush out”. Is it correct?
 
  • Barque

    Senior Member
    Tamil
    She said "I said this almost involuntarily" meaning the words came out without her exercising her will/her mind.

    ...and, with as little sanction of free will... - With the same lack of permission/applicability of free will.

    My tears gushed out with the same lack of free will - they came involuntarily.

    Cross-posted.
     

    Irelia20150604

    Senior Member
    Chinese
    Ah, they are synonyms. Thank you both for your explanation. I see it now. :D:idea:

    ...and, with as little sanction of free will... - With the same lack of permission/applicability of free will.

    My tears gushed out with the same lack of free will - they came involuntarily.
    I suppose "the same" is very useful for the analysis of "as...(as)" :idea:
     
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