39

Correct, "got her with child" means "got her pregnant", because "with child" is an old-fashioned idiom meaning "pregnant". "Got her with a child" would not have as clear a meaning and would be liable to be understood differently: outside of idioms and without clarifying language or context, the word "child" usually refers to a child who has already been ...


29

This is 17th century English, a time when spelling was slightly different and, above all, less standardized than today. "Transcribed" in modern English you'd get: "a proud and very profane young man."


27

This is a quotation from the best-known translation of the Christian Bible, the 'Authorized Version' or 'King James Version': Honor thy father and thy mother. Possessive thy and the subject/object forms thou/thee are old forms which are no longer used in Standard English, and are dying out even in the dialects where it has survived. In ordinary uses it ...


27

Today we would say "What was he doing there?" In older English, any verb might invert with its subject to form a question: How goes the night, boy? — Macbeth, ca. 1603 How goes our battle? — Nelson at Trafalgar, 1805 The restriction of inversion to auxiliaries, with do support where needed, developed only gradually, and the older practice ...


21

When can I use “thy” instead of “your”? When? Pretty much anytime before about the year 1780. In all seriousness, "thy" (and its other forms like "thou", "thee", and "thine") is the equivalent of "tú" (in Spanish) or "du" (in German). It is just the familiar form. Unlike every other Indo-European language, we stopped using the familiar form about 200 ...


18

with child refers to the state we call "pregnant". "to get someone|something {state-phrase}" means to cause it|them to be in {state}. The sudden downpour got him wet. Stepping into the puddle got his shoes wet. The real estate agent got the house sold quite quickly. The duke got the duchess with child.


15

What did he there? This is a simple way of saying "What did he do there?". Using the simple past this way is an older way of forming a question. In speech, there would be an emphasis on "did" and "he", which would probably make the meaning clearer to a modern user. This formula is not completely gone from current English How goes it? although the use is ...


14

BE delivered of is the original idiom, and it goes back to a time when deliver meant "relieve (of a burden), disencumber". Note that the Lord's Prayer has the line deliver us from evil, which means relieve us of the burden of evil. So delivery is something which happens to the mother, not the child: she is relieved of the burden of carrying ("bearing") the ...


11

Of The word "of" has many, many senses, and often a single occurrence of the word evokes more than one sense at the same time. In this case, I think two senses occur simultaneously: (1) indicating an object removed, and (2) indicating passivity in regard to an action. (These are senses 14 and 50 in the OED.) Here are some other verbs used with &...


10

The historically accurate answer. The common 19th century way to ask "what's been happening?" or "what is new?" or "what is the latest news?" is one of the following: "What news?" (Read it again, no mistake or typo was made!) This informal idiom is often used when a person newly arrives, especially from town, a more distant place or time, or as a request ...


9

"What did he there?" is short from "What did he do there?" In modern English inversions must involve the subject and an auxiliary verb. He ate (was eating) fish there. What ate he there? (Middle English) He was eating fish there. What was he eating there? (Modern English) He ate fish there. What did he eat there? (Modern English)


7

Thrum is an old word, little used now: it designates the ends of the warp threads, either those left hanging from the loom when a weaver cuts away the fabric he has woven or the fringe of loose warp threads at the end of the woven piece. The poet employs this word figuratively to signify his recognition that all he has left to "cling to" is the useless and ...


7

A key thing not mentioned in the other answers is that thou, thy, thee, thine is the informal version of you, or at least many years ago it was. In the same way that in french we have tu and vous, which can both mean you in the singular, so in english there was thou and you. In french you have to be really careful when to use tu and vous, because to say tu ...


7

This is a novel from the 18th century. English usage has shifted somewhat since then. Vocabulary has changed; words have fallen out of use, or come into use, or shifted their meaning. Even the sort of grammar used has changed in places. So, you have to expect reading such a work that you will run into things that will baffle even the typical modern native ...


5

Declines and declineth are both third-person singular indicative. Declineth is archaic, or Early Modern English. Declineth is found in the King James bible: "My days are like a shadow that declineth, and I am withered like grass." (Psalm 102) That's in the indicative mood: just describing something, not treating it as a hypothesis or alternate ...


5

Although in everyday speech, we have little problem with saying that a woman delivered a baby, in (very) formal contexts, and (very) formal and traditional environments, things are different. Now, one doesn't get much more formal and traditional than British nobility, let alone British Royalty! I see two undesirable implications of using the Duchess ...


5

If you were quoting someone from Yorkshire, you could use the modern equivalent 'thee'. From personal experience it exists more as a stereotype than actually being common usage, but there are still people that do it. Use of the singular second-person pronoun thou (often written tha) and thee. This is a T form in the T-V distinction, and is largely ...


5

BE arriving is grammatical: the progressive construction. BE arrived was at one time grammatical. Through Early Modern English, most verbs of motion (come, go, arrive, depart, move, and so forth) used BE instead of HAVE for the perfect construction. Joy to the world! The Lord is come. But that use gradually disappeared during the 18th and 19th ...


5

"hath" is typical of the King James Version (KJV) of the Bible and that was translated some years after 1600. If hath is used today in songs or literature the author consciously wants to create an archaic effect. 1611, Bible (KJV), Luke 19:26: ... unto every one that hath shall be given, and from him that hath not, even that he hath shall be taken away ... ...


5

I would paraphrase this as: I wish that youth either skipped from age ten to age 23, or that they would sleep during all these years, because there is nothing good between the ages of 10 and 23 except teens sexual exploits, including teen pregnancy, doing mean things to older people, stealing, and fighting. Essentially, those years between the ages of 10 ...


5

"Methinks" (which is usually written as a single word) is an obsolete form, which is sometimes used for archaic or comic effect. It has its origin in another obsolete phrase "It me thinks" = "It thinks to me": obsolete, because "thinks" cannot be used in this impersonal sense in modern English. All the other forms you have quoted are invented forms, by ...


4

This line is followed by a very similar one, which might help: Swing a little more, little more o'er the merry-o Swing a little more, a little more next to me "Swing a little more" is the singer telling the girl to keep dancing. You can ignore the repetition of 'little more' as that's just poetry. The end of each line is the singer telling her ...


4

Most English speakers are familiar with these terms, but are not familiar with the exact distinctions; for instance, a native English speaker may very well, when trying to sound archaic, say something along the lines of "How art thee?", when it should be "How art thou?" Also, because this is archaic language, many people think that it's more formal, when in ...


3

The antecedent is gulf. And yes, you could think of "to whose extent as "to the extent of which". However, "extent" is the object of what comes after, namely No observations yet made have allowed us to assign any approximation [to the extent].


3

Briefly, no. I have been unable to locate the original of this translation, or its date; but† it is written in a fairly old-fashioned formal register in which the use of once to mean “when once”, “when for the first time” would be jarringly colloquial. Walk the earth (the roads, the fields, &c) is an old but not ...


3

Whereinsoever - Parts of Speech - Adverb Definition - In whatever place, point or respect. Example Sentence - Food must be mixed and incorporated with the digestive humor, power, and faculty of the stomach, whereinsoever it consists, or it will not nourish. Howbeit whereinsoever any is bold, I speak foolishly, I am bold also. For each is called to ...


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