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締切り済みの質問

長いですが、和訳お願いします

use of comma before "that"

Hello,

I know that usually ( or always) a comma is never written before the word "that", and yet, I found this sentence in Charles Dickens' book - Christmas carol:

It was with great astonishment, and with a strange, inexplicable dread, that as he looked, he saw this bell begin to swing.
is it the compound adjective clause "and with a strange, inexplicable dread" that is forcing the use of comma here?
thanks!

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I'd say that at least indirectly that is the case. Most lists of rules for the use of commas have a "catch-all" rule at the end that says something like, "use a comma in any other case when it is necessary to prevent misreading or misunderstanding."

The complex modifier separates the final word dread so much from the first part of the sentence that without a comma (and its associated pause), the reader woud be likely to think of the "that clause" as a complement of dread rather than as the completing clause of the main sentence beginning with, "It was …."

In general, the rule "don't put a comma before that" is oversimplified. Certainly you don't put a comma before a restrictive relative clause that begins with that, and doing so is a mistake that is often made. So I see why the "rule" was written, but there are many uses of the word that, and sometimes it will happen that a comma comes naturally before one.
__________________
---- Pete

投稿日時 - 2009-07-11 14:21:39

QNo.5116677

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ANo.1

優れた回答者の方々がおられますが、それらの方々は貴重な時間を割いて回答されていることを考えると、このような長文になる場合は、その中の分らない部分を指摘して、その部分に関する解説をお願いするのが筋だと思います (もちろん、このように全体を示してもらえると前後関係が分りやすいので、そのこと自体は結構なことだと思います)。

投稿日時 - 2009-07-12 17:11:09

お礼

アドヴァイスありがとうございます

確かに長すぎるし、それをそのまま丸投げするのは怠慢な態度だと思いました。
自分で分からない箇所を検討してきます。

投稿日時 - 2009-07-12 17:34:46