LINGUISTICS & CULTURE
|Data:||15/JUN/2010 12:50 PM|
|Assunto:||what does he mean by that?|
C. L. R. James, the great Trinidadian essayist, once wrote of his favorite sport, “What do they know of cricket, who only cricket know?”
"why ´who´ instead of ´which´?
Bear in mind that this is very formal English, not what you hear when you go to the supermarket for milk. Notice the structure of the last phrase that has the direct object before the verb. This is not, of course, the usual order. You would expect to read "who only know cricket?" If you change the vocabulary here and there, you will see that "which" simply doesn't fit. "Who" works and so does "those who". "Which" would be need to be used as a pronoun that refers to a member or to members of a group. No such group is mentioned in the sentence. "Who", on the other hand, is not so restrictive. My advice is "Understandit, don't imitate it."
Know. ("They" is the third person plural, but "knows" is the third person singular conjugation.)
What the heck is he saying anyway?
I understand him to be saying, "What can people know about cricket if they know nothing else, if they have no knowledge of other sports, if they have nothing to compare cricket with?"
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