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Hello,

Can you please tell me if it is OK to say:

1) spectators sailed in hundreds a) is it OK to use this metaphore of sailing for people coming to theatre in a large number? b) is it OK to say in hundereds?

2) the audiences continued pouring (plural?)

3) critics and audience alike were very positive about the production? or critics and audience alike welcomed the production with delight or?

4) ending in small hours of the morning (meaning late in the morning-early morning, after midnight)

5) peculiar reading of Beckett's work (meaning extraordinary, unusual)

Thank you for your time and effort
Comments  
1) Not sure about this metaphor here...

2) The audience if one performance - audiences if for several different performances.

3) 2nd version sounds much more enthusiastic

4) ok

5) peculiar sounds negative when used in this way, a synonym of odd or weird, rather than extraordinary in a good sense.
For #4, I would say "ending in the small hours of the morning."
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For variety of opinion:

1) It sounds very odd to me. 'Sailing' has no connotation of 'multitude'; while 'going to the theatre' has no marine associations. Maybe: 'people came to see the play in their hundreds'.

2) the audiences continued pouring (plural?) => The audiences continued to pour in.

3) The second one sounds a little gushing.

4) Either 'ending in the small hours' or 'ending in the early hours of the morning'. ('Morning' is understood in 'small hours'.)

5) Any reading of Beckett's work will be by its nature 'peculiar'...But yes, 'unusual' is probably safer.

MrP
Thank you all very much. Mr Pedantic, why is it said in their hundreds?
...why is it said in their hundreds?...
Do you know, I have absolutely no idea.

'Their' derives from the Old Norse theirra, which was the 'genitive plural demonstrative and personal pronoun', according to our good friends at Merriam Webster.

Irresponsible speculation: perhaps it once had a sense of 'of them', i.e. 'hundreds of them'.

I wonder whether anyone else can help.

MrP
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AntoniaHello,

Can you please tell me if it is OK to say:

4) ending in small hours of the morning (meaning late in the morning-early morning, after midnight)

If you are talking American English here, the most common way to say this is "in the wee hours of the morning"

Wee is not a commonly used in American English, but I see it frequently with this expression.
Thank you Clh for your contribution to this thread.
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