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Take journey upon someone Options
Atatürk
Posted: Monday, April 15, 2019 1:56:32 AM

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Death then tells Everyman that he must take a long journey upon him, and bring with him his “book of count” (his account book as per God’s “reckoning”, above) which contains his good and bad deeds.

What's the antecedent of "he" in the above?

Ite, maledicti, in ignem aeternum!
thar
Posted: Monday, April 15, 2019 2:15:00 AM

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Well, you have two nouns - Death and Everyman.


Which is logical?

Death bothers to tell Everyman what he himself is going on a journey with his own book of account.


Death orders Everyman to go on a journey with his book of account.

What must it mean? Your call.
sureshot
Posted: Monday, April 15, 2019 3:39:20 AM
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Atatürk wrote:
Death then tells Everyman that he must take a long journey upon him, and bring with him his “book of count” (his account book as per God’s “reckoning”, above) which contains his good and bad deeds.

What's the antecedent of "he" in the above?


_________________________________

The pronoun "he" refers to the preceding noun "Everyman". In this sentence, Death alludes to two levels of meaning of "journey". The first level has the literal sense of a man going on a trip. The second level is symbolic and indicates that Everyman's life is a journey, from birth to death, and every man makes the same trip.

For the curious minded the sentence is from the morality play 'Everyman" based on a religious theme. The play is an allegorical drama that teaches a lesson about how Christians should live and what they must do to save their souls. In this play "Everyman" is a typical human being who has neglected his spiritual life but repents for his sins in time to be saved. "Death" is a Messenger commanded by God to summon Everyman.
Drag0nspeaker
Posted: Monday, April 15, 2019 3:03:24 PM

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Another note. to add to sureshot's explanation, is that this was written at some time about 1500 - more than 500 years ago.
The grammar is not modern English grammar.

"he must take a long journey upon him" would nowadays just be written as "he must take a long journey" or (very formally) "he must take on (the duty/burden of) a long journey".

*************
As a general rule (not really a fixed rule, but a pattern which you would see if you were to check many sentences of this type) is this:

John told Mike that he must take a journey. - Probably means that Mike must take a journey.

John told Mike that he had to take a journey. - Probably means that John had to take a journey.

John told Mike that he had a duty to take a journey. - I've no idea. It would have to be understood from context.
In your case, Death is the person with authority (as God's messenger), so (as thar says) would be telling Everyman what Everyman's duty was.


Wyrd bið ful aræd - bull!
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