case choice by rhyme

sagehen sagehen at WESTELCOM.COM
Fri Aug 19 18:34:34 UTC 2005

I didn't mean to suggest that you were making a global statement about
every instance,  Indeed, I only used this as a handy peg to bring up again
the earlier thread, since someone had said that rhyming alone could have
accounted for the case choices in the original epitaph.  As poetry, the
original is vastly better than the conventionalized paraphrases I
arnold writes:
>no one was claiming that the exigencies of rhyme account for all, or
>even most, instances of nonstandard case choice.  in particular,
>nonstandard dialects of english have quite a variety of case choices,
>including some uses of nominative objects for emphasis/contrast --
>which might be going on in the epitaph above, and in a family story
>from kentucky, which ends with a man reflecting:
>   It don't hurt I, and it pleases she.
>on the other hand, the fact that something could be completely
>rephrased so as to allow entirely standard case choices is not
>necessarily an argument against the exigencies of rhyme being a
>contributing factor in nonstandard case choice.  in particular, the
>original epitaph is strikingly parallel, with the contrasted pronouns
>in (accented) first and last positions in each line:
>   her ... we
>   us ... she
>and with ordinary rhyme; standard pronouns would eliminate ordinary
>(end) rhyme, in favor of  rhyming *first* words.  and the proposed
>rewordings lack the parallelism in the accented words of the two lines.

>On Aug 19, 2005, at 8:28 AM, Alison Murie wrote:
>> ...The "the exigencies of rhyme" don't account for the case choices
>> in the
>> epitaph I quoted  earlier (8/7) ( "Her as was has gone from we, Us
>> as is
>> will go to she"), since the much the same  sentiment could easily
>> have been
>> expressed  with standard cases, e.g.,
>> She whose bones we here inter
>> Will wait for us to follow her
>>  or
>> She whom we do here inter
>> Will wait for us to follow her.

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