The Corner

Imprimatur

Mark:

Writing “which I responded to here” instead of “to which I responded here”

would not involve you in having dangled a participle, nor even in the lesser

syntactical crime — actually, pseudo-crime — of having ended a sentence

with a preposition. I refer you to Fowler’s entry headed “unattached

participles,” or (better, for my money) Follett’s headed “danglers.”

(Though you must then proceed straight through to read the following

article: “danglers, acceptable.”

Which reminds me of a Wodehouse moment I had many years ago. I was

attending a full-dress military event in a north of England town. The star

of the thing was a much-decorated elderly Brigadier, who came up from

Aldershot on the train. It had been arranged that he would stay overnight

at the home of my C.O., a Colonel, with a very prim and proper wife. The

Brigadier duly arrived at the house, parked his bags in the hall, and went

off to his bedroom to get kitted up for the event. This, for reasons I

forget, involved him pinning on his actual medals, a thing not easy to do

when you’ve already got your jacket on. A few minutes later, the downstairs

company was treated to the sight of this old soldier leaning over the

upstairs balcony, calling down to the Colonel’s wife: “Would you mind

coming up to the bedroom, my dear? I need help with my danglers.”

John Derbyshire — Mr. Derbyshire is a former contributing editor of National Review.

Most Popular

Film & TV

A Film for All Christians

‘The growing good of the world is partly dependent on unhistoric acts,” wrote George Eliot in Middlemarch, “and that things are not so ill with you and me as they might have been, is half owing to the number who lived faithfully a hidden life, and rest in unvisited tombs.” The passage provides the title ... Read More
Film & TV

A Film for All Christians

‘The growing good of the world is partly dependent on unhistoric acts,” wrote George Eliot in Middlemarch, “and that things are not so ill with you and me as they might have been, is half owing to the number who lived faithfully a hidden life, and rest in unvisited tombs.” The passage provides the title ... Read More
Law & the Courts

The FBI’s Corrupt Cops

White-collar criminals should hope for one thing this Christmas: that they get to live under the Horowitz rules. Michael Horowitz has testified that he found no evidence of political bias on the part of the decision makers who, under the Obama administration, relied on hilariously implausible “evidence” ... Read More
Law & the Courts

The FBI’s Corrupt Cops

White-collar criminals should hope for one thing this Christmas: that they get to live under the Horowitz rules. Michael Horowitz has testified that he found no evidence of political bias on the part of the decision makers who, under the Obama administration, relied on hilariously implausible “evidence” ... Read More