M2: Unit 2: Chapter 6 – Q6.3 Answer

« back to questions                                                                                                                                                                                          » next chapter

Answer

Siebenhaar’s sentence <14> was the one with the footnote attached about the polite and informal forms of the second-person pronoun.

Edwards avoids a footnote here by explaining the whole thing as part of his main text. Where Nahuijs had Drystubble/Droogstoppel reflecting the boy should have said ‘Sir’ to him, both Siebenhaar and Edwards stay with the personal pronoun. Siebenhaar’s footnote tried to elucidate the issue by drawing on a parallel French construction and indicating there was a question of social rank and social positioning involved.

Edwards is expansive – his version is the longest of the three – but manages to cram all the information into one sentence of his main text, taking in both the grammatical point (there are at least two forms of the second-person pronoun, of them formally a plural) and its social meaning (Droogstoppel wants to be addressed with the polite form for he regards himself as socially superior).

Edwards’s appears to want to give a complete rendering. It is unlikely that the long sentence <13> which Edwards produces occurred in the original, because Siebenhaar would surely not have inserted a footnote referring to French if the issue had been satisfactorily covered in the original text.