Question about Devera

Jason Derleth derleth at MIT.EDU
Wed Mar 5 10:59:42 PST 2003

circadian rhyme wrote:

> Warlord writes:
>   I reiterate the opinion that syntax and "official correctness" are
>   secondary objectives to getting ones *meaning* across to the recipient.
> I am curious how you propose to get one's meaning across to the
> recipient if you're not using a common syntax and spelling/pronunciation.
> rone

In Shakespeare's time it was considered a sign of intelligence if you 
could spell words in many different ways; syntax abuses are quite 
common in artistic writing. They even have names...synecdoche is where 
one uses a part of what you are speaking of to replace the whole. (An 
example: "They sent my lover's tallness off to war.") Strictly 
speaking, if one is trying to convey meaning, these abuses obfuscate 
intent, yet they make the language more beautiful and the meaning 
somehow gets across anyway.

In fact, Steven Brust often tortures syntax: it is more efficient for 
communication to use short sentences, ones that have no clauses in 
them, Steve, though, uses lots and lots of clauses; perhaps--just 
perhaps--that's the artistic, purposeful way he writes, but, in 
reality, I think that's the nature of the way artistic humans 
think--they use clauses because their thoughts are nested, connected, 
and layered.

Of course, this last sentence-paragraph of mine doesn't come anywhere 
close to the first sentence of _To Reign in Hell_. :)