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Courtney
Can't understand what it means (an excerpt from a novel of 19th century) "May I be hanged myself," exclaimed Dominicus Pike, aloud, on reaching the top of a lonely hill, "if I'll believe old Higginbotham is unhanged till I see him with my own eyes and hear it from his own mouth. And, as he's a real shaver, I'll have the minister, or some other responsible man, for an endorser." "as he's real shaver" <- I don't get this right. What is shaver? I found some meanings like "one who swindles, a person who is hard or grasping in bargaining", but I still don't get this expression. Dominicus is a person who spreads a rumor that an old man('he' in the paragraph above) was murdered by someone, but that rumor is just a rumor and no one knows the fact. Why is Dominicus worried? Because "he(=a shaver)" is an important person and it might cost a lot in case the rumor is all lie? Is there anyone who could help me?
25 أغسطس 2020 04:22
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Answers · 1
This excerpt is from a short story titled "Mr. Higginbotham's Catastrophe" by Nathaniel Hawthorne, which he wrote and had published in a magazine some time before he included it in the first volume of his collection of short stories _Twice-Told Talels_, which was published in 1837. During Hawthorne's life one of the slang meanings of "shaver" was "swindler"; a swindler is a type of criminal who steals by pretending to be honest and tricking their victim. During the past 180 years natives speakers of English from the US have stopped using "shaver" to mean "swindler".
25 أغسطس 2020
Courtney
Language Skills
English, Italian, Korean
Learning Language
English, Italian