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Exercise VI. Discuss the structure and semantics of epithets in the following examples. Define the type and function of epithets:
1. He has that unmistakable tall lanky "rangy" loose-jointed graceful closecropped formidably clean American look. (I. M.)
2. Across the ditch Doll was having an entirely different reaction. With all his heart and soul, furiously, jealously, vindictively, he was hoping Queen would not win. (J.)
3. During the past few weeks she had become most sharply conscious of the smiling interest of Hauptwanger. His straight lithe body-his quick aggressive manner-his assertive, seeking eyes. (Dr.)
4. He's a proud, haughty, consequential, turned-nosed peacock. (D.)
5. The Fascisti, or extreme Nationalists, which means black-shirted, knife-carrying, club-swinging, quick-stepping, nineteen-year-old-pot-shot patriots, have worn out their welcome in Italy. (H.)
6. Where the devil was heaven? Was it up? Down? There was no up or down in a finite but expanding universe in which even the vast, burning, dazzling, majestic sun was in a state of progressive decay that would eventually destroy the earth too. (Js. H.)
7. She has taken to wearing heavy blue bulky shapeless quilted People's Volunteers trousers rather than the tight tremendous how-the-West-was-won trousers she formerly wore. (D.B.)
8. Harrison-a fine, muscular, sun-bronzed, gentle-eyed, patrician-nosed, steak-fed, Gilman-Schooled, soft-spoken, well-tailored aristocrat was an out-and-out leaflet-writing revolutionary at the time. (Jn. B.)
9. In the cold, gray, street-washing, milk-delivering, shutters-coming-off-the-shops early morning, the midnight train from Paris arrived in Strasbourg. (H.)
10. Her painful shoes slipped off. (U.)
11. She was a faded white rabbit of a woman. (A. C.)
12. And she still has that look, that don't-you-touch-me look, that women who were beautiful carry with them to the grave. (J. B.)
13. Ten-thirty is a dark hour in a town where respectable doors are locked at nine. (T. C.)
14. He loved the after swim salt-and-sunshine smell of her hair. (Jn. B.)
15. I was to secretly record, with the help of a powerful long-range movie-camera lens, the walking-along-the-Battery-in-the-sunshine meeting between Ken and Jerry. (D.U.)
16. "Thief!" Pilon shouted. "Dirty pig of an untrue friend!" (J.St.)
17. She spent hausfrau afternoons hopping about in the sweatbox of her midget kitchen. (T. C.)
18. He acknowledged an early-afternoon customer with a be-with-you-in-a-minute nod. (D. U.)
19. He thoroughly disliked this never-far-from-tragic look of a ham Shakespearian actor. (H.)
20. "What a picture!" cried the ladies. "Oh! The Iambs! Oh, the sweets! Oh, the ducks! Oh, the pets!" (K. M.)
21. A branch, cracking under his weight sent through the tree a sad cruel thunder. (T. C.)
22. There was none of the Old-fashioned Five-Four-Three-Two-One-Zero business, so tough on the human nervous system. (A. Cl.)
23. His shrivelled head bobbed like a dried pod on his frail stick of a body. (J. G.)
24. The children were very brown and filthily dirty. (W. V.)
25. Liza Hamilton was a very different kettle of Irish. Her head was small and round and it held small and round convictions. (J. St.)
26. He sat with Daisy in his arms for a long silent time. (Sc.F.)
27. From the Splendide Hotel guests and servants were pouring in chattering bright streams. (R. Ch.)
Exercise VII. In the following examples concentrate on cases of hyperbole and understatement. Pay attention to their originality or stateness, to other SDs promoting their effect, to exact words, containing the foregrounded emotive meaning:
1. I was scared to death when he entered the room. (S.)
2. The girls were dressed to kill. (J. Br.)
3. Newspapers are the organs of individual men who have jockeyed themselves to be party leaders, in countries where a new party is born every hour over a glass of beer in the nearest cafe. (J. R.) .
4. I was violently sympathetic, as usual. (Jn. B.)
5. Four loudspeakers attached to the flagpole emitted a shattering roar of what Benjamin could hardly call music, as if it were played by a collection of brass bands, a few hundred fire engines, a thousand blacksmiths' hammers and the amplified reproduction of a force-twelve wind. (A. S.)
6. The car which picked me up on that particular guilty evening was a Cadillac limousine about seventy-three blocks long. (J. B.)
7. Her family is one aunt about a thousand years old. (Sc. F.)
8. He didn't appear like the same man; then he was all milk and honey-now he was all starch and vinegar. (D.)
9. She was a giant of a woman. Her bulging figure was encased in a green crepe dress and her feet overflowed in red shoes. She carried a mammoth red pocketbook that bulged throughout as if it were stuffed with rocks. (Fl. O'C.)
10. She was very much upset by the catastrophe that had befallen the Bishops, but it was exciting, and she was tickled to death to have someone fresh to whom she could tell all about it. (S. M.)
11. Babbitt's preparations for leaving the office to its feeble self during the hour and a half of his lunch-period were somewhat less elaborate than the plans for a general European War. (S. M.)
12. The little woman, for she was of pocket size, crossed her hands solemnly on her middle. (G.)
13. We danced on the handkerchief-big space between the speak-easy tables. (R. W.)
14. She wore a pink hat, the size of a button. (J. R.)
15. She was a sparrow of a woman. (Ph. L.)
16. And if either of us should lean toward the other, even a fraction of an inch, the balance would be upset. (O. W.)
17. He smiled back, breathing a memory of gin at me. (W. G.)
18. About a very small man in the Navy: This new sailor stood five feet nothing in sea boots. (Th. P.)
19. She busied herself in her midget kitchen. (T. C.)
20. The rain had thickened, fish could have swum through the air. (T. C.)
Exercise VIII. In the following sentences pay attention to the structure and semantics of oxymorons. Also indicate which of their members conveys the individually viewed feature of the object and which one reflects its generally accepted characteristic:
1. He caught a ride home to the crowded loneliness of the barracks. (J.)
2. Sprinting towards the elevator he felt amazed at his own cowardly courage. (G. M.)
3. They were a bloody miserable lot-the miserablest lot of men I ever saw. But they were good to me. Bloody good. (J. St.)
4. He behaved pretty lousily to Jan. (D. C.)
5. Well might he perceive the hanging of her hair in fairest quantity in locks, some curled and some as if it were forgotten, with such a careless care and an art so hiding art that she seemed she would lay them for a pattern. (Ph. S.)
6. There were some bookcases of superbly unreadable books. (E. W.)
7. Absorbed as we were in the pleasures of travel-and I in my modest pride at being the only examinee to cause a commotion-we were over the old Bridge. (W. G.)
8. "Heaven must be the hell of a place. Nothing but repentant sinners up there, isn't it?" (Sh. D.)
9. Harriet turned back across the dim garden. The lightless light looked down from the. night sky. (I. M.)
10. Sara was a menace and a tonic, my best enemy; Rozzie was a disease, my worst friend. (J. Car.)
11. It was an open secret that Ray had been ripping his father-in-law off. (D. U.)
12. A neon sign reads "Welcome to Reno-the biggest little town in the world." (A. M.)
13. Huck Finn and Holden Caulfield are Good Bad Boys of American literature. (V.)
14. Haven't we here the young middle-aged woman who cannot quite compete with the paid models in the fashion magazine but who yet catches our eye? (Jn. H.)
15. Their bitter-sweet union did not last long. (A. C.)
16. He was sure the whites could detect his adoring hatred of them. (Wr.)
17. You have got two beautiful bad examples for parents. (Sc. F.)
18. He opened up a wooden garage. The doors creaked. The garage was full of nothing. (R. Ch.)
19. She was a damned nice woman, too. (H.)
20. A very likeable young man with a pleasantly ugly face. (A. C.)
Exercise IX. Pay attention to the stylistic function of various lexical expressive means used individually and in convergence:
1. Constantinople is noisy, hot, hilly, dirty and beautiful. It is packed with, uniforms and rumors. (H.)
2. At Archie Schwert's party the fifteenth Marquess of Vanburgh, Earl Vanburgh de Brendon, Baron Brendon, Lord of the Five Isles and Hereditary Grand Falconer to the Kingdom of Connaught, said to the eighth Earl of Balcairn, Viscount Erdinge, Baron Cairn of Balcairn, Red Knight of Lancaster, Count of the Holy Roman Empire and Chenonceaux Herald to the Duchy of Aquitaine, "Hullo," he said. "Isn't it a repulsive party? What are you going to say about it?" for they were both of them as it happened, gossip writers for the daily papers. (E. W.)
3. Across the street a bingo parlour was going full blast; the voice of the hot dog merchant split the dusk like an axe. The big blue blared down the street. (R. Ch.)
4. Lester was all alone. He listened to his steps, as if they weren't his at all but somebody else's. How long can a guy stand this without going nuts? Wattinger has been a good boy but it got him and he was .blown to smithereens; they say they'd seen his arm sailing through the air; higher and higher, an arm alone rising to meet God. He wondered whether, up there, they'd accept an arm in place of the whole man. His soul couldn't possibly have been in the arm; it was in your heart or in your guts or in your brain but not in your arm. (St. H.)
5. For me the work of Gertrude Stein consists in a rebuilding, an entire new recasting of life, in the city of words. Here is one artist who has been able to accept ridicule, to go live among the little housekeeping words, the swaggering bullying street-corner words, the honest working, money-saving words, and all the other forgotten and neglected citizens of the sacred and half forgotten city. (Sh. A.)
6. Only a couple of the remaining fighters began to attack the bombers. On they all came, slowly getting larger. The tiny mosquitoes dipped and swirled and dived in a mad, whirling dance around the heavier, stolid horseflies, who nevertheless kept serenely and sedately on. (J.)
7. "I guess," said Mr. Hiram Fish sotto voce to himself and the world at large, "that this has been a great little old week." (Ch.)
8. The good ships Law and Equity, these teak-built, copper-bottomed iron-fastened, brazen-faced, and not by any means fast-sailing Clippers, are laid up in ordinary. (D.)
9. An enormous grand piano grinned savagely at the curtains as if it would grab them, given the chance. (W. Gl.)
10. Duffy was face to face with the margin of mistery where all our calculations collapse, where the stream of time dwindles into the sands of eternity, where the formula fails in the test-tube, where chaos and old night hold sway and we hear the laughter in the ether dream. (R. W.)
11. Mrs. Ape watched them benignly, then squaring her shoulders and looking (except that she had really no beard to speak of) every inch a sailor strode resolutely forrad to the first-class bar. (E. W.)
12. The fog comes on little cat feet. It sits looking over harbor and city on silent haunches
and then moves on. (K, S.)
13. On that little pond the leaves floated in peace and praised Heaven with their hues, the sunlight haunting over them. (G.)
14. From the throats of the ragged black men, as they trotted up and down the landing-stage, strange haunting notes. Words were caught up, tossed about, held in the throat. Word-lovers, sound-lovers-the blacks seemed to hold a tone in some warm place, under their red tongues perhaps. Their thick lips were walls under which the tone hid. (Sh. A.)
15. It was a relief not to have to machete my way through a jungle of what-are-you-talking-aboutery before I could get at him. (J. A.)
16. Some say the world will end in fire,
Some say in ice,
From what I've tasted of desire
I hold with those who favor fire.
But if it had to perish twice
I think I know enough of hate
To say that for destruction ice
Is also great
And would suffice. (R. Fr.)
17. Outside the narrow street fumed, the sidewalks swarmed with fat stomachs. (J. R.)
18. The owner, now at the wheel, was the essence of decent self-satisfaction; baldish, largish, level-eyed men, rugged of neck but sleek and round of face-face like the back of a spoon bowl. (S. L.)
19. His fingertips seemed to caress the wheel as he nursed it over the dark winding roads at a mere whispering sixty. (L. Ch.)
20. We plunged in and out of sun and shadow-pools, and joy, a glad-to-be-alive exhilaration, jolted through me like a jigger of nitrogen. (T. C.)
21. They were both wearing hats like nothing on earth, which bobbed and nodded as they spoke. (E. W.)
22. These jingling toys in his pocket were of eternal importance like baseball or Republican Party. (S. L.)
23. He might almost have been some other man dreaming recurrently that he was an electrical engineer. On the other side of the edge, waiting for him to peer into it late at night or whenever he was alone and the show of work had stopped, was illimitable unpopulated darkness, a greenland night; and only his continuing heart beats kept him from disappearing into it. Moving along this edge, doing whatever the day demanded, or the night offered, grimly observant (for he was not without fortitude), he noticed much that has escaped him before. He found he was attending a comedy, a show that would have been very funny indeed if there had been life outside the theatre instead of darkness and dissolution. (P.)
24. Poetry deals with primal and conventional things-the hunger for bread, the love of woman, the love of children, the desire for immortal life. If men really had new sentiments, poetry could not deal with them. If, let us say, a man did not feel a bitter craving to eat brass fenders or mahogany tables, poetry could not express him. If a man, instead of falling in love with a woman, fell in love with a fossil or a sea anemone poetry could not express him. Poetry can only express what is original in one sense-the sense in which we speak of original sin. It is original not in the paltry sense of being new, but in the deeper sense of being old; it is original in the sense that it deals with origins. (G. K. Ch.)
25. His dinner arrived, a plenteous platter of food-but no plate. He glanced at his neighbors. Evidently plates were an affectation frowned upon in the Oasis café.
Taking up a tarnished knife and fork, he pushed aside the underbrush of onions and came face to face with his steak.
First impressions are important, and Bob Eden knew at once that this was no meek, complacent opponent that confronted him. The steak looked back at him with an air of defiance that was amply justified by what followed. After a few moments of unsuccessful battling, he summoned the sheik. "How about a steel knife?" inquired Bob.
"Only got three and they're all in use," the waiter replied.
Bob Eden resumed the battle, his elbows held close, his muscles swelling. With set teeth and grim face he bore down and cut deep. There was a terrible screech as his knife skidded along the platter, and to his horror he saw the steak rise from its bed of gravy and onions and fly from him. It travelled the grimy counter for a second then dropped on to the knees of the girl and thence to the floor.
Eden turned to meet her blue eyes filled with laughter.
“Oh, I’m sorry,” he said. “I thought it was a steak, and it seems to be a lap dog.” (D.B.)
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