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Archeologists have recently unearthed a 250-page bible

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Archeologists have recently unearthed a 250-page bible [#permalink] New post 23 Mar 2008, 08:08
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Archeologists have recently unearthed a 250-page bible commentary in Safed. The document is undated but contains clues to when it was written. The first 130 pages are written by one hand, while the rest is written in a distinctively different hand. Since a letter in the handwriting identified as that of the second writer reports on an earthquake that killed many people in Safed in 1759, the commentary was probably produced around that time.

Which of the following, if true, most strongly supports the hypothesis that the commentary was produced around 1759?

a) Other than this commentary, there are no known samples of the handwriting of the first writer.

b) According to the account by the second writer, the earthquake caused the collapse of over fifty structures.

c) A commentary like the one unearthed would usually take between three to nine months to write.

d) There was only one earthquake in Safed in the 18th century.

e) It is highly unusual for such a document to be written by more than one hand.




Please explain your answer.
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Re: CR: Earthquake [#permalink] New post 23 Mar 2008, 10:23
my vote for D.

Explanation: The 2nd author talks about an earthquake (but didn't mention time) CURRENT PEOPLE(including author of the argument) KNOW THAT EARTHQUAKE HAPPENED in 1759 AND IT KILLED MANY PEOPLE., Conclusion is based on the assumption that letter of second writer is talking about the very quake archaeologists know (1759). So now existing of only 1 earthquake in 18 th century is vital, otherwise conclusion collapses: archaeologists and second writer may have been talking about different quakes. Besides, if there was only 1 quake in 18 th century, it must be 1759's quake. Chance of living 100< age ( 2nd writer) is less than 0.5%, so reasonable to say the commentary was written around 1759's.

C- attempting but not correct. It would be true only if second writer mentioned the time quake happened.

This is only my opinion and may not be correct.
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Re: CR: Earthquake [#permalink] New post 23 Mar 2008, 17:41
Conclusion: the commentary was probably produced around the 1759 earthquake time.
The answer choice must identify or relate to the 1759 earthquake.


a) Other than this commentary, there are no known samples of the handwriting of the first writer. [Irrelevant to the argument – eliminate it]

b) According to the account by the second writer, the earthquake caused the collapse of over fifty structures. [Yes, second writer reported loss of life due to Earthquake. But, this doen’t prove or support the argument that the commentary was produced in 1759 – eliminate it]

c) A commentary like the one unearthed would usually take between three to nine months to write.[Time frame to complete such commentary is irrelevant – eliminate it]

d) There was only one earthquake in Safed in the 18th century. [Hold it]

e) It is highly unusual for such a document to be written by more than one hand. [Irrelevant]

ANSWER: D
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Re: CR: Earthquake [#permalink] New post 23 Mar 2008, 22:51
D is also my choice. here is the reasoning

Conclusion: The book was written around 1759
Premise: The book mentions an earthquake that killed many people in Safed in 1759.

The answer choices should bring the above two closer. Lets have a look at the options
A: Irrelevant
B:Also an irrelevant detail
C: The mention of time is again irrelevant and not very helpful in solvingif the book was written around 1759
D: If there was only one earthquake in Safed during 18th centuary, it would firm up the conclusion that book was written around that time, an option that can be considered.
E: Not very pertinent to the discussion here.
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Re: CR: Earthquake [#permalink] New post 23 Mar 2008, 23:36
I will go for D too.

Why?
All other four are irrelevant. Only D talks about the earthquake and its time.
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Re: CR: Earthquake [#permalink] New post 23 Mar 2008, 23:37
Expert's post
Let me give a crazy attempt: B :shock:

Archeologists have recently unearthed a 250-page bible commentary in Safed. The document is undated but contains clues to when it was written. The first 130 pages are written by one hand, while the rest is written in a distinctively different hand. Since a letter in the handwriting identified as that of the second writer reports on an earthquake that killed many people in Safed in 1759, the commentary was probably produced around that time.

Fist of all I would like to focus your attention on following things:

1. "...the second writer reports on an earthquake that killed many people in Safed in 1759." I have no doubt that the second writer reported the date - 1759.

2. "...the commentary was probably produced around that time." What does the author of the argument mean? Does he/she mean the same year? The second author could write the commentary 50 years after the earthquake.

Which of the following, if true, most strongly supports the hypothesis that the commentary was produced around 1759?

a) Other than this commentary, there are no known samples of the handwriting of the first writer. - it is very close. For example, if there were known samples of the handwriting of the first writer dated 1800, it would destroy the conclusion.

b) According to the account by the second writer, the earthquake caused the collapse of over fifty structures. - What could the second writer count? Could the second author count collapsed structures 50 years after the earthquake? The second author saw this collapsed structures that would be rebuilt in the next years. Does the reasoning make sense?

c) A commentary like the one unearthed would usually take between three to nine months to write. - The second author could write the commentary 50 years after the earthquake.

d) There was only one earthquake in Safed in the 18th century. - The second author pointed 1759.

e) It is highly unusual for such a document to be written by more than one hand. - no comments
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Re: CR: Earthquake [#permalink] New post 24 Mar 2008, 00:08
s4ur4bh wrote:
I will go for D too.

Why?
All other four are irrelevant. Only D talks about the earthquake and its time.


I think B wrong not b/c B is irrelevant, B does say about the evidence-the earthquake- that argument points out to go to a hypothis. But, B does not as strongly sport as D b/c B does not mention the time happening.
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Re: CR: Earthquake [#permalink] New post 24 Mar 2008, 02:56
the OA is D. I thought it was t tricky question
Re: CR: Earthquake   [#permalink] 24 Mar 2008, 02:56
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