Discussion:
Murdoch: fluttered
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Marius Hancu
2017-04-17 14:19:59 UTC
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Hello,

~~~
[Antonia's Martin Lynch-Gibbon's wife; Georgie's his lover. Awkward
first encounter.]

Georgie in her shabby brown skirt, blue pullover, and black stockings
looked like a child. She had, with a defiant deliberation, made no
change in her appearance. She wore no make-up. Her hair was plaited and
twisted carelessly, a little absurdly even, to the top of her head. She
was very pale, and the pallor emphasized the limpid clarity of her
complexion. She bowed a stiff little bow to Antonia, who fluttered, not
deciding whether to extend her hand. Both women were breathing quickly.

Antonia said, 'Will you have a drink?' Her voice was deep with
nervousness. 'Do sit down, please.' She began to pour out some sherry.

'No, no thank you,' said Georgie. 'Don't be silly,' I said.

Iris Murdoch, A Severed Head
~~~

1.
"Antonia, who fluttered"
Is it this meaning that's involved?
~~~
flutter

to move about agitatedly, irregularly, or with great bustle and show
without much result : flit
~~~
And, what might she be exactly doing?:-)

2.
"Will you have a drink?"
"Would" (instead of "will") seems _to me_ politer, however it is very
rare in this context. Why the rarity?
"Will" seems colder.

Thanks.
--
Marius Hancu
Peter T. Daniels
2017-04-17 14:32:59 UTC
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Post by Marius Hancu
~~~
[Antonia's Martin Lynch-Gibbon's wife; Georgie's his lover. Awkward
first encounter.]
Georgie in her shabby brown skirt, blue pullover, and black stockings
looked like a child. She had, with a defiant deliberation, made no
change in her appearance. She wore no make-up. Her hair was plaited and
twisted carelessly, a little absurdly even, to the top of her head. She
was very pale, and the pallor emphasized the limpid clarity of her
complexion. She bowed a stiff little bow to Antonia, who fluttered, not
deciding whether to extend her hand. Both women were breathing quickly.
Antonia said, 'Will you have a drink?' Her voice was deep with
nervousness. 'Do sit down, please.' She began to pour out some sherry.
'No, no thank you,' said Georgie. 'Don't be silly,' I said.
Iris Murdoch, A Severed Head
~~~
1.
"Antonia, who fluttered"
Is it this meaning that's involved?
What else could it possibly be?
Post by Marius Hancu
~~~
flutter
to move about agitatedly, irregularly, or with great bustle and show
without much result : flit
~~~
And, what might she be exactly doing?:-)
What part of her body is mentioned immediately after?
Post by Marius Hancu
2.
"Will you have a drink?"
"Would" (instead of "will") seems _to me_ politer, however it is very
rare in this context. Why the rarity?
"Will" seems colder.
It's the perfectly normal way to offer someone a drink.

"Would" demands an "if" after -- "would you have a drink if I were to offer you one?"
Reinhold {Rey} Aman
2017-04-17 17:07:25 UTC
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Post by Peter T. Daniels
What else could it possibly be?
What part of her body is mentioned immediately after?
Please ignore the Loony Linguist's stupid questions. Thanks.

See the lonesome attention-whore:
Loading Image...
--
~~~ Reinhold {Rey} Aman ~~~
The Conscience of AUE
Lewis
2017-04-17 15:37:36 UTC
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Post by Marius Hancu
Hello,
~~~
[Antonia's Martin Lynch-Gibbon's wife; Georgie's his lover. Awkward
first encounter.]
Georgie in her shabby brown skirt, blue pullover, and black stockings
looked like a child. She had, with a defiant deliberation, made no
change in her appearance. She wore no make-up. Her hair was plaited and
twisted carelessly, a little absurdly even, to the top of her head. She
was very pale, and the pallor emphasized the limpid clarity of her
complexion. She bowed a stiff little bow to Antonia, who fluttered, not
deciding whether to extend her hand. Both women were breathing quickly.
Antonia said, 'Will you have a drink?' Her voice was deep with
nervousness. 'Do sit down, please.' She began to pour out some sherry.
'No, no thank you,' said Georgie. 'Don't be silly,' I said.
Iris Murdoch, A Severed Head
~~~
1.
"Antonia, who fluttered"
Is it this meaning that's involved?
~~~
flutter
to move about agitatedly, irregularly, or with great bustle and show
without much result : flit
~~~
And, what might she be exactly doing?:-)
It seems clear the reference is to the motion of her hand.
Post by Marius Hancu
2.
"Will you have a drink?"
"Would" (instead of "will") seems _to me_ politer, however it is very
rare in this context. Why the rarity?
Why would you think it is politer? Would is conditional, and would more
naturally follow (or depend) on some other statement.

"Will you have" or "would you like" are the usual phrases.

I suspect that "Will you have" is considered more polite, or at least
more posh.
--
I never read much; I have something else to do.
CDB
2017-04-17 19:44:00 UTC
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~~~ [Antonia's Martin Lynch-Gibbon's wife; Georgie's his lover.
Awkward first encounter.]
Georgie in her shabby brown skirt, blue pullover, and black
stockings looked like a child. She had, with a defiant deliberation,
made no change in her appearance. She wore no make-up. Her hair was
plaited and twisted carelessly, a little absurdly even, to the top of
her head. She was very pale, and the pallor emphasized the limpid
clarity of her complexion. She bowed a stiff little bow to Antonia,
who fluttered, not deciding whether to extend her hand. Both women
were breathing quickly.
Antonia said, 'Will you have a drink?' Her voice was deep with
nervousness. 'Do sit down, please.' She began to pour out some
sherry.
'No, no thank you,' said Georgie. 'Don't be silly,' I said.
Iris Murdoch, A Severed Head ~~~
1. "Antonia, who fluttered" Is it this meaning that's involved? ~~~
flutter
to move about agitatedly, irregularly, or with great bustle and show
without much result : flit ~~~ And, what might she be exactly
doing?:-)
I think of a series of small gestures of the hand or head, each quickly
cut off by a change of mind. They might not be consciously noticed by
someone not paying attention.
2. "Will you have a drink?" "Would" (instead of "will") seems _to me_
politer, however it is very rare in this context. Why the rarity?
"Will" seems colder.
"Would", as you say, is politer; like all such shifts of present tense
to past, it avoids confronting the other person with an immediate choice.

"Would" usually introduces "would you like", while this is "will you
have". It might imply that Antonia feels a loss of control, of agency,
in the situation; she only asks what is to be done, and not what she
would need to know in order to decide to serve a drink to a guest of her
own volition.
Marius Hancu
2017-04-17 22:04:17 UTC
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Post by CDB
~~~ [Antonia's Martin Lynch-Gibbon's wife; Georgie's his lover.
Awkward first encounter.]
Georgie in her shabby brown skirt, blue pullover, and black
stockings looked like a child. She had, with a defiant deliberation,
made no change in her appearance. She wore no make-up. Her hair was
plaited and twisted carelessly, a little absurdly even, to the top of
her head. She was very pale, and the pallor emphasized the limpid
clarity of her complexion. She bowed a stiff little bow to Antonia,
who fluttered, not deciding whether to extend her hand. Both women
were breathing quickly.
Antonia said, 'Will you have a drink?' Her voice was deep with
nervousness. 'Do sit down, please.' She began to pour out some sherry.
'No, no thank you,' said Georgie. 'Don't be silly,' I said.
Iris Murdoch, A Severed Head ~~~
1. "Antonia, who fluttered" Is it this meaning that's involved? ~~~
flutter
to move about agitatedly, irregularly, or with great bustle and show
without much result : flit ~~~ And, what might she be exactly
doing?:-)
I think of a series of small gestures of the hand or head, each quickly
cut off by a change of mind. They might not be consciously noticed by
someone not paying attention.
2. "Will you have a drink?" "Would" (instead of "will") seems _to me_
politer, however it is very rare in this context. Why the rarity?
"Will" seems colder.
"Would", as you say, is politer; like all such shifts of present tense
to past, it avoids confronting the other person with an immediate choice.
"Would" usually introduces "would you like", while this is "will you
have". It might imply that Antonia feels a loss of control, of agency,
in the situation; she only asks what is to be done, and not what she
would need to know in order to decide to serve a drink to a guest of her
own volition.
I'm definitely glad I've asked:-)

I was on both in the right neighborhood, but your reply provides anchors.
Thanks a lot.
--
Marius Hancu

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