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PREPOSITIONS. Preposition omitted after other verbs; before indirect object

The preposition is omitted after some verbs which can easily be regarded as transitive. Thus if we can say "plot my death," there is little difficulty in the licence.

“That do conspire (for) my death.

“(In) Which from the womb I did participate.

“She complain'd (about) her wrongs.

“And his physicians fear (for) him mightily.

So 1 Hen. IV. iv. 1. 24; T. of A. ii. 2. 12; T. A. ii. 3. 305; M. of V. iii. 2. 29.

This explains

“O, fear me not.

; iii. 4. 7.

“That he would labour (for) my delivery.

“To look (for) your dead.

“I must go look (for) my twigs.

“He hath been all this day to look (for) you.

And in the difficult passage--

“O, whither hast thou led me, Egypt? See
How I convey my shame out of thine eyes
By looking back what I have left behind
'Stroy'd in dishonour.

While turning away from Cleopatra, Antony appears to say, that he is looking back (for) the fleet that he has left dishonoured and destroyed.


“Scoffing (at) his state.

“Smile you (at) my speeches as I were a fool!

“Thou swear'st (by) thy gods in vain.” Ib. i. 1. 163.

“Yet thus far, Griffith, give me leave to speak (of) him.

Both here and in L. L. L. v. 2. 349; Macbeth, iv. 3. 159; T. N. i. 4. 20, "speak" is used for describe. In Macbeth, iv. 3. 154, "'tis spoken" is used for "'tis said." Again, "said" is used for "called" in

“To be said an honest man and a good housekeeper.

; so Macbeth, iv. 3. 210.

"Talking that" is used like "saying that" in Tempest, ii. 1. 96. "Speak," however, in R. and J. iii. 1. 158, "Spake him fair" means "speak to:" but in the same expression M. of V. iv. 1. 271 it means "speak of." Similarly, "whisper" is often used without a preposition before a personal object.

“He came to whisper Wolsey.

“They whisper one another in the ear.

“Your followers I will whisper to the business.


“whisper her ear.

In some cases, as in

“She will attend it better,

; M. of V. v. 4. 103. the derivation may explain the transitive use.

“Despair thy charm,

is, perhaps, a Latinism. So "sympathise," meaning "suffer with," is used thus:

“The senseless brands will sympathise
The heavy accent of thy moving tongue.

"Deprive," meaning "take away a thing from a person," like "rid," can dispense with "of" before the impersonal object.

“'Tis honour to deprive dishonour'd life.

This explains how we should understand--

“Which might deprive your sovereignty of reason.

i.e. "which might take away your controlling principle of reason." So, perhaps,

“Frees all faults.

This seems to have arisen from the desire of brevity. Compare the tendency to convert nouns, adjectives, and neuter verbs into active verbs (290).

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