April 6, 2007
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Noun Clauses as Direct Objects
– Quotations

     Quotations that function as direct objects raise a question. Consider the following sentence(s):

The people of the village cried, “O brothers, your words are good. We will move our lodges to the foot of the magic mountain. We can light our wigwam fires from its flames, and we shall not fear that we shall perish in the long, cold nights of winter.”
If we ask the question “cried what?,” in one sense the entire quotation is the answer. But the quotation itself includes several sentences. (In some cases, they contain several paragraphs.) Since a period ends a sentence, does this sentence end after “good,” or does it continue all the way to “winter”? To decide where to put brackets and vertical lines, we need a consistent answer to this question.
     The KISS Grammar view is that the sentence ends at the end of the first main clause within the quotation. In this case, that would be “good.” Thus, in KISS, this passage would be analyzed like this:
The people {of the village} cried, [DO “O [Inj] brothers [DirA], your words are good (PA)]. | We will move our lodges (DO) {to the foot} {of the magic mountain}. | We can light our wigwam fires (DO) {from its flames}, | and we shall not fear [DO that we shall perish {in the long, cold nights} {of winter}].” |