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Equivalent of "so far". Options
cheekyme 🎭
Posted: Saturday, August 1, 2020 6:11:59 AM

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What would be an equivalent of so far in this phrase:


A man in debt is so far a slave.

Ralph Waldo Emerson (1803-1882)
FROSTY X RIME
Posted: Saturday, August 1, 2020 8:39:18 AM

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It might be somewhat.
Romany
Posted: Saturday, August 1, 2020 1:08:49 PM
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Bear in mind that this is 200year old English. There is no real equivalent of "so far"in Contemporary English that matches in the sense it's used here.

But what he MEANT was: " "...is virtually a slave." "...is, to all intents and purposes, a slave." "...is indistinguishable from a slave." "...may as well be a slave." "...is nothing more than a slave." "...is the equivalent of a slave."

Does that help?
cheekyme 🎭
Posted: Saturday, August 1, 2020 2:26:59 PM

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Romany wrote:

Does that help?



Yes, indeed. I like the explanation, thank you, and I totally agree that life is a better place when it’s a debt-free journey. I wonder if the quote in question could be derived from Publilius Syrus, a Latin writer, who once said: “Debt is the slavery of the free.” Either way, I now understand the phrase fully.
Hope123
Posted: Saturday, August 1, 2020 3:33:56 PM

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Romany could well be correct.

However, when I read it in the thread where Monamagda posted the whole quote, it seemed to me to mean “up until now and not likely to change” is a slave, but I don't know when that meaning came in to usage.


https://forum.thefreedictionary.com/postst201760_A-man-in-debt-is-so-far-a-slave-.aspx?find=unread



Drag0nspeaker
Posted: Sunday, August 2, 2020 12:47:28 AM

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Hmmmmmm. . .
When I read the whole paragraph, it seemed to me like "to that extent".

A man in debt is, to that extent, a slave.
Sarrriesfan
Posted: Sunday, August 2, 2020 6:17:38 AM

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I wonder if understanding the historical context of Debtors’ Prisons might be useful.

In countries like Britain and the United States someone that was in debt could be placed in a prison and made to work until their debts if a court ordered it. Obviously this is supposed to only be for those in serious debt, but for them working and living in prison conditions would not be very far away from slavery.

Famously Charles Dickens father was imprisoned in a debtors prison in London, and was joined there by his wife and young children, as they had nowhere else to live.

A man in debt is almost like a slave, makes sense if you think of that context.
Jyrkkä Jätkä
Posted: Sunday, August 9, 2020 5:11:05 AM

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, until all the debt is payed...
Sarrriesfan
Posted: Sunday, August 9, 2020 4:53:12 PM

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Jyrkkä Jätkä wrote:
, until all the debt is payed...


Yes thanks JJ, I don’t know how payed was missing.
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