correlative conjunction : GMAT Verbal Section
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# correlative conjunction

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01 Jun 2013, 04:38
I am a bit confused to understand the below example for correlative conjunction.

The king wishes to express that he is neither a despot nor oblivious to the concerns of the people.
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01 Jun 2013, 06:15
btgsnt wrote:
I am a bit confused to understand the below example for correlative conjunction.

The king wishes to express that he is neither a despot nor oblivious to the concerns of the people.

The King wishes to express that he is not a despot.
The King wishes to express that he is not oblivious to the concerns of the people

Since both are negative, you can separate the common part and join the uncommon part using neither.. nor.

The king wishes to express that he is neither a despot nor oblivious to the concerns of the people.
edit --> But this is wrong, as we cannot join a noun [a despot] and an adjective [oblivious] using conjunctions.

To keep short and correct, we can say: The King is neither a despot nor an ignorant.

Wren-Martin:
Conjunctions merely join: They do no other work. Conjunctions which are used in pairs are called Correlative Conjunctions or merely Correlatives.

Ex:
Either-or -- Either take it or leave it.
Neither-nor -- It is neither useful nor ornamental.
Both-and -- We both love and honour him
Though-yet (rare in current English) -- Though he is suffering much pain, yet he does not complain.
Whether-or -- I do not care whether you go or stay.
Not only-But also -- Not only he is foolish, but also obstinate. edit --> WRONG in GMAT
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Last edited by ConnectTheDots on 01 Jun 2013, 07:10, edited 1 time in total.
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01 Jun 2013, 06:33
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btgsnt wrote:
I am a bit confused to understand the below example for correlative conjunction.

The king wishes to express that he is neither a despot nor oblivious to the concerns of the people.

There is confusion here about conjunctions.

The king wishes to express that he is neither a despot nor oblivious to the concerns of the people. <-- wrong

The key word are are neither (...) nor.
neither __________ nor ___________

The GMAT wants that the part inbetween the connectors to match.
He won't neither run nor jump.neither ____verb___ nor ____verb____
The parts contained between those constructs MUST match in terms of parallel structure also:
He is neither a basketball player nor pilot. WRONG
He is neither a basketball player nor a pilot. CORRECT
These are just examples, now back to your sentence:

The king wishes to express that he is neither a despot(noun) nor oblivious(adj) to the concerns of the people.

I hope that you see where the error is.

ConnectTheDots, some of your examples are not correct.
Not only-But also -- Not only he is foolish, but also obstinate. This is wrong for the above reasons
He is not only foolish, but also obstinate. This is correct
But most important, the original phrase is wrong.
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01 Jun 2013, 07:05
Thanks Zarrolou for correcting me.

I missed the original sentence. Conjunctions always join similar things (part of speech or type of word).

The below example is directly excerpted from Wren-Martin, so I did not cross check.

Not only-But also -- "Not only he is foolish, but also obstinate." : This was in the pdf version, I cross checked the book, their is a slight difference:"Not only is he foolish, but also obstinate."
Regardless, both of them are wrong in GMAT.
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Re: correlative conjunction   [#permalink] 01 Jun 2013, 07:05
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