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I couldn't understand the mechanism of a sentence from the book Born to Run by Christopher McDougall:

when it comes to grabbing a spotlight and persuading people to do things they’d rather not, Fisher could put a televangelist to shame (well, as much as that’s possible). Take this classic Fish tale that Krakauer tells about a rafting trip Fisher made into the Copper Canyons in the mid-1980s.

My problem is with the second sentence Take this classic.... I can't understand the usage of the verb "take" at the beginning and so the rest of the sentence confuses me.

  • "Take under consideration ..." – Hot Licks Nov 30 '19 at 13:02
  • It means You, reader, take... – green_ideas Nov 30 '19 at 16:28
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    Just replace Take with Consider or Consider, for instance, – Edwin Ashworth Nov 30 '19 at 16:40
  • It's another way of saying "for example." – Robusto Nov 30 '19 at 16:52
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It means

You, reader, take this classic tale...

which is an imperative or "command" or "suggestion."

The meaning of take here is that of consider as an example.

(See Merriam-Webster definition 18b.)

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Take in this context sets up an example of Fisher's persuasiveness. You could read it as "Take, for example, this classic Fish tale...."

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  • thank you. and am I wrong about the idea that we need a comma after "take" at the original text? – nada saboori Nov 30 '19 at 12:53
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    @nadasaboori No, you don't need a comma. It's an imperative: take this X. – StoneyB on hiatus Nov 30 '19 at 14:21
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Is that a partial sentence? "Take this classic Fish tale that Krakauer tells about a rafting trip Fisher made into the Copper Canyons in the mid-1980s" is a fragment that should probably be followed up by something like "which illustrates the principle of manipulation on the weak-minded"

Take is inviting the reader to take this example as if the author is 'giving' it to you as a gift. It's like a transactional prepositional phrase in this usage.

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    Not a fragment but an imperative. The subject (you) is understood. – KarlG Nov 30 '19 at 13:58

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