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RELATIVAL CONSTRUCTIONS. That, a conjunctional affix

That as a conjunctional affix. Just as so and as are affixed to who (whoso), when (whenso), where (whereas, whereso), in order to give a relative meaning to words that were originally interrogative, in the same way that was frequently affixed.1

“When that the poor have cried.

; T. N. v. 1. 398.

“Why that.

“You may imagine him upon Blackheath,
Where that his lords desire him to have borne
His bruised helmet and his bended sword
Before him through the city.

So A. Y. L. ii. 7. 75; iv. 3. 117. This, with the above, explains

Edmund. When by no means he could.
Gloucester. Pursue him, ho! go after. By no means what?
Edmund. Persuade me to the murder of your lordship,
But that I told him, &c.

Gradually, as the interrogatives were recognized as relatives, the force of that, so, as, in "when that," "when so," "when as," seems to have tended to make the relative more general and indefinite; "who so" being now nearly (and once quite) as indefinite as "whosoever." The "ever" was added when the "so" had begun to lose its force. In this sense, by analogy, that was attached to other words, such as "if," "though," "why," &c.

“If that the youth of my new interest here
Have power to bid you welcome.

Compare

“If that rebellion
Came like itself, in base and abject routs.

; T. N. i. 5. 324, v. 1. 375. So Lear, v. 3. 262; Rich. III. ii. 2. 7.

The fuller form is found, CHAUC. Pard. Tale, 375: "If so were that I might;" and Lodge writes, "If so I mourn." Similarly,

“If so be thou darest.

Compare:

“While that.

“Though that.

; Lear, iv. 6. 219; T. N. i. 3. 48.

“Lest that.

; T. N. iii. 4. 384.

“Whether that.

"So as that," frequently found.

“Since that.

; Rich. III. v. 3. 202. "How that" is also frequent. We also find that frequently affixed to prepositions for the purpose of giving them a conjunctival meaning: "For that" (Macb. iv. 3. 185); "in that;" "after that," &c.

The Folio has

“Your vertue is my priuiledge: for that
It is not night when I doe see your face.
Therefore I thinke I am not in the night.

The Globe omits the full stop after "face," making "for that" (because) answer to "therefore." Others remove the stop after "privilege" and place it after "for that."

Hence we find "but that" where we should certainly omit that

“The breath no sooner left his father's body
But that his wildness, mortified in him,
Seem'd to die too.

1 St. Mark iii. 35. Where our Version has "Whosoever shall do the will of my Father," Wickliffe has "Who that doth."

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