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# Emily Dickinsons letters to Susan Huntington Dickinson were

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Emily Dickinsons letters to Susan Huntington Dickinson were [#permalink]  23 Sep 2004, 15:54
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Emily Dickinson’s letters to Susan Huntington Dickinson were written over a period beginning a few years before Susan’s marriage to Emily’s brother and ending shortly before Emily’s death in 1886, outnumbering her letters to anyone else.

(A) Dickinson were written over a period beginning a few years before Susan’s marriage to Emily’s brother and ending shortly before Emily’s death in 1886, outnumbering
(B) Dickinson were written over a period that begins a few years before Susan’s marriage to Emily’s brother and ended shortly before Emily’s death in 1886, outnumber
(C) Dickinson, written over a period beginning a few years before Susan’s marriage to Emily’s brother and that ends shortly before Emily’s death in 1886 and outnumbering
(D) Dickinson, which were written over a period beginning a few years before Susan’s marriage to Emily’s brother, ending shortly before Emily’s death in 1886, and outnumbering
(E) Dickinson, which were written over a period beginning a few years before Susan’s marriage to Emily’s brother and ending shortly before Emily’s death in 1886, outnumber
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Re: OG 12 SC #26 [#permalink]  10 Oct 2010, 18:40
Even I struggled to decide between a and e and finally ended up opting for e. OA pls

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Re: OG 12 SC #26 [#permalink]  10 Oct 2010, 22:08
Expert's post
E for me for the reason that the logical predication needs outnumber as the main verb, pushing the writing and ending to play the secondary part.
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Re: OG 12 SC #26 [#permalink]  10 Oct 2010, 22:44
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Nice catch on the "comma which" rule. Just referred to Ron's explanation in the MGMAT forum

Copy+paste of his summary

if you have "X of Y, which..."
then:
* if Y works as the antecedent of "which", then "which" should stand for Y.
* if Y doesn't work as the antecedent, but "X of Y" DOES work, then "which" can stand for "X of Y".
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Re: OG 12 SC #26 [#permalink]  11 Oct 2010, 07:32
daagh wrote:
E for me for the reason that the logical predication needs outnumber as the main verb, pushing the writing and ending to play the secondary part.

Why doesn't "outnumber" have to be parallel to "writing" and "ending"?

Thanks.
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Re: OG 12 SC #26 [#permalink]  11 Oct 2010, 07:34
Fremontian wrote:
Nice catch on the "comma which" rule. Just referred to Ron's explanation in the MGMAT forum

Copy+paste of his summary

if you have "X of Y, which..."
then:
* if Y works as the antecedent of "which", then "which" should stand for Y.
* if Y doesn't work as the antecedent, but "X of Y" DOES work, then "which" can stand for "X of Y".

Interesting...in this case then, "letters to Susan Huntington Dickinson" stand for "X of Y"?

Hmm, this would be a very hard catch for me on the exam...

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Re: OG 12 SC #26 [#permalink]  11 Oct 2010, 07:45
rules of SC are kind of limited, their applications are broad though.
practice makes perfect, guys?
every now and then I get disappointed :/
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Re: OG 12 SC #26 [#permalink]  11 Oct 2010, 07:49
Expert's post
martie11:Why is the concern about writing , which is not a part of
any of the choices.?
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Re: OG 12 SC #26 [#permalink]  11 Oct 2010, 08:39
daagh wrote:
martie11:Why is the concern about writing , which is not a part of
any of the choices.?

Hey daagh,

I'm referring to choices D and E, which begin with "Dickinson, which"...

Conicidentally, even in the line that I wrote above ", which" refers to "D and E"...where as in the correct answer (E), ", which" does not refer to Dickenson, but rather to "letters"...that's what's throwing me off.

I think the point for me is that within the first 10 seconds of reading the question I discounted D and E incorrectly due to the ", which" rule of thumb.

...I'm over analyzing...time to move on. Thanks.
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Re: OG 12 SC #26 [#permalink]  11 Oct 2010, 09:13
tiruraju wrote:
Even I struggled to decide between a and e and finally ended up opting for e. OA pls

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The reason the answer ie E because the which rule can be voilated in case of mission critical modifiers. In this case, letters to Susan Huntington Dickenson acts as a mission critical modifier because if you remove this phrase, the whole sentence will become meaningless.
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Re: OG 12 SC #26 [#permalink]  11 Oct 2010, 13:20
Fremontian wrote:
Nice catch on the "comma which" rule. Just referred to Ron's explanation in the MGMAT forum

Copy+paste of his summary

if you have "X of Y, which..."
then:
* if Y works as the antecedent of "which", then "which" should stand for Y.
* if Y doesn't work as the antecedent, but "X of Y" DOES work, then "which" can stand for "X of Y".

Fremontian, thanks for the link to MGMAT forum...for others, the MGMAT thread explains in great DETAIL the solution...excellent reply by Ron of MGMAT...

+1

Thanks again.
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Emily Dickinsons letters to Susan Huntington Dickinson were [#permalink]  04 Nov 2010, 12:14
Emily Dickinson’s letters to Susan Huntington Dickinson were written over a period beginning a few years before Susan’s marriage to Emily’s brother and ending shortly before Emily’s death in 1886, outnumbering her letters to anyone else.
A. Dickinson were written over a period beginning a few years before Susan’s marriage to Emily’s brother and ending shortly before Emily’s death in 1886, outnumbering
B. Dickinson were written over a period that begins a few years before Susan’s marriage to Emily’s brother and ended shortly before Emily’s death in 1886, outnumber
C. Dickinson, written over a period beginning a few years before Susan’s marriage to Emily’s brother and that ends shortly before Emily’s death in 1886 and outnumbering
D. Dickinson, which were written over a period beginning a few years before Susan’s marriage to Emily’s brother, ending shortly before Emily’s death in 1886, and outnumbering
E. Dickinson, which were written over a period beginning a few years before Susan’s marriage to Emily’s brother and ending shortly before Emily’s death in 1886, outnumber
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Re: Emily Dickinson [#permalink]  04 Nov 2010, 13:58
B. "begins" and "ended" are not parallel
C. "beginning" and "That ends" are not parallel
D. Placing "and" before "outnumbering" makes it parallel to "beginning" and "ending". This is wrong.
E. "outnumber" is in present tense and refers to "letters", however "were" in the past tense.

This leaves us with "A".

What is OA?
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Re: Emily Dickinson [#permalink]  04 Nov 2010, 14:50
arunrajak wrote:
E

You are right: E is OA.

http://www.manhattangmat.com/forums/post24246.html
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Re: Emily Dickinson [#permalink]  04 Nov 2010, 23:19
Expert's post
Let us appreciate, that the gist of the passage is that Emily Dickinson’s letters to Susan outnumber Emily’s letters to any one else (even today-so we use the present tense verb - outnumber) and the writing of the letters over some period is just an incidental factor to the main action. If you remove the parenthetical and inessential content, then the main purpose will pop up. This will facilitate dropping all the choices containing – outnumbering i.e A ,C and D

Between B and E, B is awful with out a conjunction to connect the verb - outnumber -with the first part of the passage, turning the sentence into a run-on. E is the choice.
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Re: Emily Dickinson [#permalink]  05 Nov 2010, 07:41
daagh wrote:
Let us appreciate, that the gist of the passage is that Emily Dickinson’s letters to Susan outnumber Emily’s letters to any one else (even today-so we use the present tense verb - outnumber) and the writing of the letters over some period is just an incidental factor to the main action. If you remove the parenthetical and inessential content, then the main purpose will pop up. This will facilitate dropping all the choices containing – outnumbering i.e A ,C and D

Between B and E, B is awful with out a conjunction to connect the verb - outnumber -with the first part of the passage, turning the sentence into a run-on. E is the choice.

This is a nice trick for long sentences like this one.
I guess I was misled by lack of commas (which are always very helpful for dropping unnecessary parts of the clause). Thus, I though that "were" was the main verb of the clause, while "outnumbering" is the consequence.
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Re: emily [#permalink]  30 Mar 2011, 14:32
why is "outnumbering " wrong in A

kissthegmat wrote:
amolsk11 wrote:
Emily Dickinson’s letters to Susan Huntington Dickinson were written over a period beginning a few years
before Susan’s marriage to Emily’s brother and ending shortly before Emily’s death in 1886, outnumbering

her letters to anyone else.

A.Dickinson were written over a period beginning a few years before Susan’s marriage to Emily’s brother and
ending shortly before Emily’s death in 1886, outnumbering

B.Dickinson were written over a period that beginsa few years before Susan’s marriage to Emily’s brother
and ended shortly before Emily’s death in 1886, outnumber

C.Dickinson, written over a period beginning a few years before Susan’s marriage to Emily’s brother and that
ends shortly before Emily’s death in 1886and outnumbering

D.Dickinson, which were written over a period beginning a few years before Susan’s marriage to Emily’s
brother, ending shortly before Emily’s death in 1886, and outnumbering

E.Dickinson, which were written over a period beginning a few years before Susan’s marriage to Emily’s
brother and ending shortly before Emily’s death in 1886, outnumber

I solved it in different manner, I didn't bothered much about "Which". As "outnumbering" doesn't make sense we are left with only B and E option.

In Option B check out the highlighted portion above, the portion which makes this choice wrong. The highlighted portions needs to be in same tense. So we are left with only choice E.

Also, I think this questions is from OGs as this questions seems familiar!
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Re: emily [#permalink]  20 Jul 2011, 01:10
OA is E...for A, outnumbering can't be the result of "were written over a period...", so here it's a logic problem, rather than a grammatical problem...

But I dont understand why in E we can use "outnumber", which is a present tense...should we use past tense here because "were written" appears in this sentence? Thx!
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Re: emily [#permalink]  19 Aug 2011, 10:59
got the 'which' part. so both A and E are grammatically correct.
So the issue now remains that of meaning.
Choice A emphasizes on the period during which the letters were written.
Choice E emphasizes on the fact that the letters outnumber her letters to anyone else.

Usually if there is nothing wrong with the meaning in A, we stick to it assuming that it is the author's intended meaning.

Why do we switch to the meaning in E here?

Thanks!
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Re: Emily Dickinson's Letters [#permalink]  22 Aug 2011, 03:41
So both A and E are grammatically correct.
However, according to me meaning in A is correct.
also A seems more concise than E which adds a 'which' modifier unnecessarily. A clearly says ..were written.

Any specific views?
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Re: Emily Dickinson's Letters [#permalink]  22 Aug 2011, 05:09
Expert's post
The switch in the focus of the meaning in E is necessitated because, the important thing here is not that the letters were written over some period, but the fact that in terms of sheer quantity, they are unprecedented even as of today and perhaps for ever after these days of digital and electronic revolution, some kind of unbreakable world record. That is the reason that these letters are valued. This is also the reason for using a present tense verb outnumber rather than outnumbered

I agree A and E are grammatically correct but haven't we accepted that GMAT is beyond just grammar
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Re: Emily Dickinson's Letters   [#permalink] 22 Aug 2011, 05:09

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