Date: Mon, 24 Nov 1997 16:47:19 -0500
From: Beverly Flanigan FLANIGAN[AT SYMBOL GOES HERE]OUVAXA.CATS.OHIOU.EDU
Subject: a nice place to live
New subject: Frequently of late I see variants of the above phrase
without "in" either preposed with "which" or stranded. Two such recent
local citations are: "Welcome to Athens County--a great place to live,
work, and visit!" (from a new webpage) and "we'll better be able
to...make OU a better place to live and study and also to live" (from
the student newspaper). I don't think the latter is a misprint; I
suspect "live and study" is a cluster meaning "live as a student" vs.
"live in general" (but I may be wrong).
A conversion test for the first citation would presumably be: "Let's
visit Athens"; "Let's live Athens"; "Let's work Athens." Granted, "a
great place to work" may be common, but is the "live minus in"
construction also widespread? I suspect it originated in the
prescription-based reluctance to end a sentence with a preposition,
esp. in writing. But when I surveyed my graduate students recently, I
was amazed at the general acceptance of the form, one student even
distinguishing between "in" (not required with 'live') and "within"
(connoting something like "within city limits"). Most, in fact, seemed
puzzled by my query. But then I saw an analogous statement on e-mail
(from students in the Business College): "We have created a few
questions that we would appreciate your quick response." And just now
I heard "[eco-minded lumbermen in Brazil look for] an empty space for
trees to fall." I know that pied-piping of preps with relative
pronouns is increasingly rare, but this lack of any preposition at all
mystifies me. Have others noticed this? (I will check Gilman's WDEU,