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absolute phrases Manhattan SC

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Director
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absolute phrases Manhattan SC [#permalink] New post 04 Jun 2011, 01:25
Can someone knowledgeable explain to me what's wrong with this sentence:

Scientists have found high levels of iridium in certain geological formations around the world, which suggests the cataclysmic impact of a meteor millions of years ago.


They say that "which must reffer to the noun just before the which"

To me the sentence is perfectly OK.

Any suggestions?

Thanks.
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Re: absolute phrases Manhattan SC [#permalink] New post 04 Jun 2011, 05:09
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This sentence is certainly not correct per se. It does not so much matter that the relative pronoun ‘Which’ fails the touch rule. There are four nouns preceding 'which’, namely World, Formations, Iridium, high levels.

One of them must suggest the cataclysmic impact of a meteor millions of years ago

Either world or formations or iridium can not be the logical referent, since none of them as such can indicate a catastrophic effect. It must then be the plural ‘high levels’ that must be the intended antecedent and thus requires the plural ‘suggest’ rather than the singular ‘suggests’

P.S: May I know why this is classified under absolute phrases?
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Director
Director
avatar
Joined: 23 Apr 2010
Posts: 584
Followers: 2

Kudos [?]: 25 [0], given: 7

Re: absolute phrases Manhattan SC [#permalink] New post 23 Jun 2011, 05:10
OK, the problem with this sentence is that 'which' cannot modify a clause, which is the case in this sentence (well here again I'm using 'which' to modify a clause). That's what they say in the book (Manhattan SC).

As to your question, I don't actually remember anymore in which section of the book I came across this sentence. So I can't answer your question.
Re: absolute phrases Manhattan SC   [#permalink] 23 Jun 2011, 05:10
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