Laying the predicate
Posted by David FG on January 27, 2005
In Reply to: Laying the predicate posted by Smokey Stover on January 27, 2005
: : Is 'predicate' used properly in the following sentence:
: : Hannibal allegedly was made to take an oath of eternal enmity toward the Romans by his father, who lost the First Punic war -- thus laying the predicate for the Second.
: : Thanks.
: I hope you can find someone informed on the use of this word, but it seems to be used here as a form of prediction, which, according to the OED, is an incorrect use. If the author had said the second Punic War as predicated on the first we would at least have a statement clear enough to argue about. SS
I agree, the author appears to be confusing 'predicate' with 'predict' - but even then, it would be an odd, not to say clumsy, sentence.