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At 01:48 PM 07/19/2001 -0400, Rickard Parker wrote:


>So Eliot could have used a different word, "Thames" perhaps, and he
>would have still called up a biblical context.  By using "Leman" he
>still retains that context but adds the possiblities of mutiple
>meanings on top of that.

    OK, I may be all wet also, and  I am definitely struggling....


>Had he written "I sat down and cried on the
>banks of the Leman" the change in wording might have led to a loss of
>the allusion to the Bible but the play on Leman would have still been
>in effect.

   But since he didn't do that, the play on Leman means that it's 
significance must be realized in its working with the allusion to the 
specific Biblical context  which is presumably going some way to reveal his 
(the speaker's) own "context" (his blasted condition). It (another meaning 
of Leman) would not mean the same thing IN THE POEM without that allusion, 
and where you note that Eliot might have used one without the other, I 
would say he wouldn't use one without the other, because what he wants from 
them requires both. By this I don't mean your example is wrong; it does 
clarify the two notions: other meanings and contexts. But ultimately they 
must be seen as they work together ... Not very well put, but maybe the 
sense of it isn't lost.

  Or say that the dictionary meanings of Leman (archaic and Lake) are 
incomplete (don't reach their signification in the poem) without the 
Biblical allusion.

  Heading out of town for a day,
  Ken A.