In Protest of/for/Grammar

If someone wants to start a topic entitled “The American War on Prepositions (and other abstract nouns, such as drugs and terror)” it could run and run and run.

(“Two nations divided by a common language” - and now a third one born on the internet of illiteracy and ignorance. Something about lawns, too.)

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Related to your already-off-topic War of Prepositions, I’ve always been annoyed by the British usage of the word “of” when telling the time. “What time is it, mate?” “It’s fifteen of three.” WTH, people? I can make out that fifteen refers to minutes, but “of” doesn’t tell me if that means fifteen minutes TO three, or fifteen minutes AFTER three.

“Of” makes this a directionless vector, meaningless in this context. As Churchill [never] said in reference to ending a sentence with a preposition, “[this is] offensive impertinence, up with which I will not put.”

The only plausible explanation I can invent is that it may be an extremely lazy contraction of the word “after”.

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Can you really protest for something though? You can protest to demand something, but if you’re marching in support of something, it feels like that’s a demonstration instead of a protest.

Wait…march in support of…I think that’s where the “of” came from!

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The ever-reliable Wikipedia gives the definition of protest as: " A protest (also called a demonstration , remonstration or remonstrance ) is a public expression of objection, disapproval or dissent towards an idea or action, typically a political one."

I feel like there must be some other word for a demonstration in support/approval of something. Rally perhaps? Or has the usage of protest changed recently?

Perhaps its an affectation that’s gotten popular.

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De praepositio non est disputandum.

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What about over?

You also see occasional usage of the form “people protest over the passge of unpopular bill”
Where over is used to mean due to. This also lacks the needed directionality provided by “against” or “for” or “in favor/opposition of” (which I would consider fine as it conveys the intent of the protest)

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I have never heard or seen this usage as a Briton. I’d say if it was used it was archaic. Been reading too much Georgian fiction have we? :wink:

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What British people have you been speaking to? I’ve never heard that usage.

Maybe it’s a regional thing?

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That is protest as a noun. It is also a verb.
To protest for/against/about/at/over etc.
or
A protest for/against/about/at/over

@Scientist - yes, over is another valid one. As, technically, is under, but only in a positional sense (‘they protested under the auspices of the Anti-protest League’, or ‘they protested under the bridge’)

But never of!

And protest is a different noun from a protestation. :wink: One might well have a protestation of (e.g. innocence) but protestation is never a verb, of course.

Television. As an American, I’m duty bound to get all my culture via someone else’s filter.

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The gentleman doth protest to much, methinks…

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Nothing depicting anything in the past 80-100 years, I’ll be bound. Been watching too many historical costume dramas, have we? :wink:

My grandmother said it, so a dated US southern thing perhaps?

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I protest too much and perhaps I protest to much amusement, but I do NOT

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Wait, couldn’t you have a sentence like, “She led a protest of women from the local community,” or, “It was a protest of men who were dissatisfied with their lot in life?”

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You were protesting (against) “to” quite a lot

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Yes. It was the women’s protest or the men’s protest. The of indicates the possessive. Not the object of the protest, which was the originally offending usage.

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Sari.

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You could of just ignored it.

(ducks)

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