lesson 58 a blessing in disguise?
the tiny village of frinley is said to possess a 'cursed tree'. because the tree was mentioned in a newspaper, the number of visitors to frinley has now increased. the tree was planted near a church fifty years ago, but it is only in recent years that it has gained an evil reputation. it is said that if anyone touches the tree, he will have bad luck; if he picks a leaf, he will die. many villagers believe that the tree has already claimed a number of victims. the vicar has been asked to have the tree cut down, but so far he has refused. he has pointed out that the tree is a useful source of income as tourists have been coming from all parts of the country to see it. in spite of all that has been said, the tourists have been picking leaves and cutting their names on the tree-trunk. so far, not one of them has been struck down by sudden death!
句中的“it is only in recent years that it has gained an evil reputation”是一句典型的强调句型，其基本结构为：
it is / was + 被强调的成分 + that +被强调成分所在句子的剩余成分
he went to the park by car yesterday.
上句话中的主语he、宾语the park、方式状语by car、时间状语yesterday都可以用以上强调句型来强调，即：
it was he that went to the park by car yesterday.
it was the park that he went to by car yesterday.
it was by car that he went to the park yesterday.
it was yesterday that he went to the park by car.
it is said that the tiny village of frinley possesses a 'cursed tree'.
it is said that if anyone touches the tree, he will have bad luck...
句中的it指代就是后面that所引导的复合句“if anyone touches the tree, he will have bad luck”，这个复合句就是整个主句真正的主语。之所以采用形式主语it，是为了避免因为主语过长导致整个句子头重脚轻。
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