I have previously written of the grand history of the Oregon state flag –see post for Dec 23, 2005– the only state flag with two different sides.
Now let us consider another glorious banner, that of the state of Virginia.
Yes, you are correct, the man holding the spear in his right hand is wearing a toga.
Yes, he cradles a sword awkwardly with his left arm.
Yes, this is the only state flag displaying a human nipple.
Yes, the man with the spear, the sword and the cold chest muscle is resting his heel on the throat of a man lying on the ground.
Yes, that is a crown placed in such a way as to suggest it was felled from the head of the supine-ed man.
No, that is not a correct usage of the adjective supine.
And yet, it is not wrong.
The phrase does describe the picture resembled on the flag, especially the position of the subdued foe.
Yes, you are correct, the last phrase also contains an incorrect usage.
The word resemble, although a verb, should not be used in the manner I have typed it. Something in the tense is wrong, though I can’t say exactly what.
Our brains, though, find it useful to accept the incorrect usage in order to keep from stopping its reading.
This acceptance comes grudgingly from an experienced, close reader.
However, an ever enlarging number of people report pleasure at finding words used differently than they were taught to use them, or are used to seeing them used, and the pleasure they derive from viewing such shenanigans acts as motivation to keep them reading & to seek out more to read.
So I do it.
It is important to know grammatical correctness in order to communicate to a civilized & literate society.
Since most of us do not spend much time in a civilized & literate society, yet wish to communicate with those around us, it behooves us to learn to write and speak in ways which draw to us an audience rather than in ways, however correct, that push the eyes of our brothers & sisters away.
Which is the small task I am about now, here:
I hope I have not explained myself overly much.
Thank you for your interest.