Posted by Kathy F. on October 12, 1997 at 13:30:12:
In response to more of them words..., written by greg on October 10, 1997 at 01:15:47
] I guess my main problem with some of the words in JE is that (to me) they are out of place, either in the particular sentence or paragraph, or the entire book. It makes me think that CB was trying to give her book a false superiority. (I'm trying to find a better way of expressing myself, please bear with me.) The sentences flow along very nicely, and then, all of a sudden, she throws out a huge word that just sticks out and breaks the flow. It's like she decided that she had to prove (to the male editors??) that she had a good education, and could use as many big words as they could. But (to paraphrase Jurassic Park) "she got so involved with whether or not she could, she forgot to ask if she should."
] ] Kathy
Of course, I started this thread asking for opinions, wondering if anyone shared my opinion, so now I know that I am not alone, but there are others who are not like me. I have reread about half of the novel (well, skimmed it, actually), and some of the words and phrases that stuck out include (emphasis mine):
[chap. 5] "...with a benignant light in their irids...."
[chap. 7] "He scrutinized the reverses of these living medals."
"...and apply them to their optics (what's wrong with saying "eyes"?)
[chap. 9] "effluvia of mortality"
[chap. 15] "The hiss of the quenched element...." (why not "fire"?)
"fulminating strange anathemas"
[chap. 18] "...graces as multitudinous....by meretricious arts...."
I have a vague memory of more in the latter half of the book, especially in the dialogue, which seemed really out of place since it was spoken in the heat of the moment.
However, I am perfectly willing to admit that they might have talked that way in the mid-1800s, and it only sounds weird to me, because I have not had the same education as they did, nor have I immersed myself in the Bronte books, as I have done with Jane Austen.
But from my vocal cords to your auditory canal, such effluvious manner of expressing oneself would appear to the author to be rather excessive. ;-P
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