I'll admit it, I love me some grammar. I just get down and roll in it, I love it so much. The school year is just starting, and I'm reviewing parts of speech with my little cherubs, and yes, I know, ho-hum, but grammar is so cool. Like, you take Shakespeare.
|Wild Bill Shakespeare|
Grammar was His Bitch
Here's another. In Romeo and Juliet, the apothecary is afraid to sell Romeo poison because, "Mantua's law is death to any he that utters them." "Utters" is nice - even to mention the name of the poison is a death penalty, but my favorite part is "any he." Any he? Any he? What Shakespeare's doing is using a personal pronoun like an indefinite pronoun. It's like guys cruising for chicks saying, "Let's go see if we can pick up some shes." Actually, that is pretty cool, and I think I'll have some characters say exactly that the next opportunity I get.
Now in case you think I'm joking, here's one last one. All of a sudden. You've said that one before yourself, haven't you. Well, Shakespeare coined that phrase in Taming of the Shrew. Take a second to think how odd that phrase is. Grammatically it makes no sense. Sudden is an adjective, it cannot be the object of a preposition, but that's how Shakespeare uses it. It's like saying, "All of a gradually," or "All of a slowly." Those other two expressions wouldn't work, because they aren't about suddenness. We get to the end of that phrase, "all of a sudden," and subconsciously we're thinking, where's the noun? And there is no noun! Whoa! It's just sudden. The expression itself is sudden, get it?
Okay, that's enough, I'll stop.
But I love me some grammar.