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Q&A

Why didn't 18-19th century Anglophone authors shorten their sentences, by starting more with Majuscules? Why lengthen them with comma + conjunction? [duplicate]

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Closed as duplicate by ArtOfCode‭ on Mar 12, 2022 at 04:10

This question has been addressed elsewhere. See: Why didn't 18-19th century Anglophone authors shorten their sentences, by starting more with Majuscules? Why lengthen them with commas, (semi)colons?

This question was closed; new answers can no longer be added. Users with the reopen privilege may vote to reopen this question if it has been improved or closed incorrectly.

Shorter sentences have been proven more readable. Thus why didn't the authors below sunder their lengthy sentences, prolongated by comma + conjunction? Why not divide them into shorter sentences starting with Majuscules? See my improvements below in bold. English ISN'T my mother tongue.

65 Long Sentences in Literature

Jane Austen, “Northanger Abbey.” 119 words.

Her plan for the morning thus settled, she sat quietly down to her book after breakfast, resolving to remain in the same place and the same employment till the clock struck one; and from habitude very little incommoded by the remarks and ejaculations of Mrs. Allen, whose vacancy of mind and incapacity for thinking were such, that as she never talked a great deal, so she could never be entirely silent ; and, . [T] t herefore, while she sat at her work, if she lost her needle or broke her thread, if she heard a carriage in the street, or saw a speck upon her gown, she must observe it aloud, whether there were anyone at leisure to answer her or not.

William Faulkner, “Absolom, Absolom.” 122 words.

From a little after two o’clock until almost sundown of the long still hot weary dead September afternoon they sat in what Miss Coldfield still called the office because her father had called it that–a dim hot airless room with the blinds all closed and fastened for forty-three summers because when she was a girl someone had believed that light and moving air carried heat and that dark was always cooler , and which . That office (as the sun shone fuller and fuller on that side of the house) became latticed with yellow slashes full of dust motes which Qunetin thought of as being flecks of the dead old dried paint itself blown inward from the scaling blinds as wind might have blown them.

Leo Tolstoy, “Anna Karenina.” 123 Words.

It is true that Alexei Alexandrovich vaguely sensed the levity and erroneousness of this notion of his faith, and he knew that when, without any thought that his forgiveness was the effect of a higher power, he had given himself to his spontaneous feeling, he had experienced greater happiness than when he thought every minute, as he did now, that Christ lived in his soul, and that by signing papers he was fulfilling His will , . [B] b ut it was necessary for him to think that way, it was so necessary for him in his humiliation to possess at least an invented loftiness from which he, despised by everyone, could despise others, that he clung to his imaginary salvation as if it were salvation indeed.

Henry James, “Italian Hours.” 221 words.

To dwell in a city which, much as you grumble at it, is after all very fairly a modern city ; . [W] w ith crowds and shops and theatres and cafes and balls and receptions and dinner-parties, and all the modern confusion of social pleasures and pains; to have at your door the good and evil of it all ; and . [Y] y et to be able in half an hour to gallop away and leave it a hundred miles, a hundred years, behind, and to look at the tufted broom glowing on a lonely tower-top in the still blue air, and the pale pink asphodels trembling none the less for the stillness, and the shaggy-legged shepherds leaning on their sticks in motionless brotherhood with the heaps of ruin, and the scrambling goats and staggering little kids treading out wild desert smells from the top of hollow-sounding mounds; and then to come back through one of the great gates and a couple of hours later find yourself in the “world,” dressed, introduced, entertained, inquiring, talking about Middlemarch to a young English lady or listening to Neapolitan songs from a gentleman in a very low-cut shirt–all this is to lead in a manner a double life and to gather from the hurrying hours more impressions than a mind of modest capacity quite knows how to dispose of.

Vladimir Nabokov, “The Gift.” 309 words.

He walked on toward the shop, but what he had just seen—whether because it had given him a kindred pleasure, or because it had taken him unawares and jolted him (as children in the hayloft fall into the resilient darkness)—released in him that pleasant something which for several days now had been at the murky bottom of his every thought, taking possession of him at the slightest provocation : . [M] m y collection of poems has been published ; and . [W] w hen as now, his mind tumbled like this, that is, when he recalled the fifty-odd poems that had just come out, he would skim in an instant the entire book, so that in an instantaneous mist of its madly accelerated music one could not make any readable sense of the flicking lines—the familiar words would rush past, swirling amid violent foam (whose seething was transformed into a mighty flowing motion if one fixed one’s eyes on it, as we used to do long ago, looking down at it from a vibrating mill bridge until the bridge turned into a ship’s stern: farewell!)—and this foam, and this flickering, and a separate verse that rushed past all alone, shouting in wild ecstasy from afar, probably calling him home, all of this, together with the creamy white of the cover, was merged in a blissful feeling of exceptional purity … What am I doing! he thought, abruptly coming to his senses and realizing that the first thing he had done upon entering the next shop was to dump the change he had received at the tobacconist’s onto the rubber islet in the middle of the glass counter, through which he glimpsed the submerged treasure of flasked perfumes, while the salesgirl’s gaze, condescending toward his odd behavior, followed with curiosity this absentminded hand paying for a purchase that had not yet been named.

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