aefenglommung (aefenglommung) wrote,
aefenglommung
aefenglommung

Like nails on a blackboard

I'm reading The Elizabethan World Picture, by EMW Tillyard, a Cambridge don who published this back in the '40s. It's a nice read, except for ONE thing: there are too few commas.

It must have been a fad that went through Cambridge but never caught on anywhere else. The commas which are missing are those used in setting off items in a series. The result is that I first try to construe the series as a set of nouns modifying each other (another thing English is good at). It's annoying and distracting as hell.

Examples:
The heavens themselves, the planets, and this centre
Observe degree priority and place
Insisture course proportion season form
Office and custom, in all line of order . . .*

He belongs to a world of violent crime and violent change, of sin blood and repentance, yet to a world loyal to a theological scheme.

*This is the way the author edits Shakespeare
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