"little/few but" (was: "long from" for "far from")

Arnold Zwicky zwicky at STANFORD.EDU
Mon Dec 1 18:00:17 UTC 2008

On Nov 29, 2008, at 6:51 PM, Herb Stahlke wrote:

> "few but" sounds strange, but couldn't "little but" be taken as a
> down-toned universal?

i have trouble with "few but/except" but find "little but/except" fine
in at least some cases:
   They did little but/except dither.

not that i know what to make of this.

for what it's worth, exceptive "other than" works fine for me in
places where "but" and "except" do not:
   Few other than his fellow poets understand his work.


The American Dialect Society - http://www.americandialect.org

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