1. Jon Deavers
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    Jon Deavers Member

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    Using the word "Brood" as a verb

    Discussion in 'Word Mechanics' started by Jon Deavers, Dec 16, 2012.

    Need some advice here. I have a character who is going to reflect on the arrogance of another character's words in a letter. I want to use the verb brood. The sentence sounds correct when I write it as:

    "She brooded over the arrogance in the magister's words."

    However, thesaurus.com gives me a definition of "agonize over" which is perfect for what I'm trying to say but now I'm not sure if the use of "over" in "brood over" is redundant or if that matters. I can write the sentence as:

    "She brooded the arrogance in the magister's words."

    and it eliminates the redundancy but looks funny.

    Any feedback is appreciated. Thanks!
     
  2. Trilby
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    Trilby Contributing Member Contributor

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    Why not 'agonized over' ?

    I don't see anything wrong with 'brooded over', over is not redundant in the example sentence.
     
  3. Jon Deavers
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    Jon Deavers Member

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    Thanks Trilby!

    The reason I want to make "brood" work is it implies a less intense physical reaction. It feels like a more internalized reaction than the physical reaction that "agonize" implies. Using agonize creates an image of hand-wringing and pacing the room whereas brood feels more like narrowed eyes and reddening of the cheeks (to my mind at least).

    I think you're right and I'm going with brooded over. It just seems to fit better. Thanks again!
     
  4. mammamaia
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    mammamaia nit-picker-in-chief Contributor

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    that's the most common way to use 'brood'...
     
  5. madhoca
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    madhoca Contributing Member Contributor

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    In British English, you make "brood" a phrasal verb: brood on/brood over + object, e.g. "She brooded over the problem". If you don't have the preposition, e.g. "She brooded the problem" it means she sat on/incubated it. Literally. Like a clutch of eggs. Maybe the American instinct for paring down has changed this, I don't know. I'm aware nothing these days is set in stone...
     
  6. mammamaia
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    mammamaia nit-picker-in-chief Contributor

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    no, it hasn't!... still has to be 'brood on' or 'over'...
     
  7. E. C. Scrubb
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    E. C. Scrubb Active Member

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    Correction/carification - if the story is about emo vampires or emo wizards, it's "Brood over 'everything.'" :D

    (Sorry, couldn't resist. I'll shut up and leave now) ;)
     

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